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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Use our tracker to check whether your local services are meeting strict waiting-time targets for cancer, routine operations and A&E.

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Severe accident: M5 Worcestershire southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire southbound severe accident, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J6 for A449.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 southbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J6, A449 (Worcester), because of an accident. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, at J7 for A44 Worcester.

M5 Worcestershire - M5 lane blocked on exit slip road northbound at J7, A44 (Worcester), because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire southbound severe disruption, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J6 for A449.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 southbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J6, A449 (Worcester), because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J4A for M42.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 northbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J4a M42, because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Video: What's the weekend weather got in store?

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

It should be dry and cold tonight before rain moves in tomorrow.

There's a yellow weather warning for snow and ice from 00:05 on Sunday morning.

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Inquest concludes murderer took his own life in jail

A murderer who beat his wife to death during a row over tickets to an Elvis tribute act took his own life in jail, an inquest in Worcester has concluded.

Paul Abbott, 57, battered wife Jacqueline with a hammer in 2015 and was given a life sentence in 2016.

Paul Abbott
West Midlands Police

He was found dead at HMP Long Lartin in Worcestershire, exactly a year after killing his wife.

Investigation into death of rough sleeper

Worcester City Council is launching an investigation into the death of a 74-year-old rough sleeper who died on the streets two years ago.

Cardon Banfield was found dead in his tent near the New Road cricket ground and a friend of his claimed he'd applied for housing benefit before he died.

New Road in Worcester
Google

The council says it's bringing in an independent expert to establish whether or not he "slipped through" the safeguarding net.

Joe Taufete'e

USA hooker Joe Taufete’e and South African centre Wynand Olivier sign new deals with Premiership side Worcester.

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Thousands without power after fire at substation

About 6,000 homes are without power after a fire at an electrical substation in Bromsgrove.

Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service said it was called out at 12:52 and one man had to be taken to hospital.

Western Power Distribution says it's had to cut off power to a number of unaffected properties for safety reasons, and it doesn't yet know when it will be able to restore it.

Let the Games begin - athletes ready for Winter Olympics

Let the games begin... The Winter Olympics are now under way after the opening ceremony took place this morning.

The Olympic Torch is lit at Winter Olympics 2018

Seven athletes from the West Midlands will take part in the South Korea games over the next fortnight.

Here's who to keep an eye out for:

  • Charlotte Gilmartin from Redditch - Short track speed skating
  • Farrell Treacy from Henley in Arden - Short track speed skating
  • Izzy Atkin, American but has family from Birmingham - freestyle skiing
  • Rowan Cheshire from Stoke-on-Trent - Freestyle skiing
  • Joel Fearon Coventry - Bobsleigh
  • Ben Simons, Shropshire - Bobsleigh
  • Amanda Lightfootfrom, Coventry - Biathlon
View more on twitter

BreakingMoD censured over death of Royal Navy technician

The Ministry of Defence has been criticised after a Royal Navy technician from Kidderminster was killed during lift maintenance work.

Leading Engineering Technician Neal Edmonds, who was 42, was crushed between a moving lift and the lift shaft in June 2014 while on board HMS Bulwark.

HMS Bulwark
BBC

A Health and Safety Executive investigation found the MoD failed to ensure there was a safe system of work to control the risks associated with lift maintenance.

The MoD can't face prosecution in the same way as private or commercial organisations and a Crown Censure is the maximum sanction a government body can receive.

One released as police investigate child sex exploitation

A 19-year-old arrested by police in Worcester investigating child grooming and drugs trafficking, has been released while enquiries continue.

Five men in their 20s are still being questioned by officers after 10 properties in the Bath Road area were raided early yesterday morning.

All five are being held on suspicion of multiple offences relating to child sexual exploitation.

Travis Head

Worcestershire sign Australia batsman Travis Head as their "main overseas player" for the 2018 county season.

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Bodenham Lake Nature Reserve

The deaths follow reports of illegal animal trapping in the area around the Herefordshire reserve.

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Banker loses appeal against double murder conviction

A former British banker has lost an appeal against his conviction for the murders of two Indonesian women in Hong Kong.

Rurik Jutting
Getty Images

Rurik Jutting, a former pupil at Abberley Hall in Worcestershire, was given a mandatory life sentence in 2016 after their mutilated bodies were found in his apartment.

The former Cambridge University graduate had sought to appeal against his conviction, with his representatives claiming the trial judge had misled the jury on points relating to his defence of diminished responsibility.

Appeal Court judges in Hong Kong said there was "no merit" in the grounds of appeal and dismissed the application.

Snow and ice warning

It's snowing in parts of the West Midlands.

A reminder that a yellow warning for snow and ice came into force shortly after midnight covering most of the region.

The outlook for the weekend doesn't look good with heavy rain forecast tomorrow and a colder day on Sunday again with the chance of snow.

Weather graphic
Met Office

Severe disruption: M42 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M42 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between M5 J4A and J1 for A38.

M42 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M42 northbound between M5 J4a and J1, A38 (Bromsgrove), because of debris on the road. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Apology after bypass homes error

BBC Hereford and Worcester

Herefordshire Council says an "administration error" meant people whose homes could be demolished to make way for a new city bypass weren't given any notice that they were on the proposed routes.

County Hall Hereford
google

The residents of Kings Acre Road only received letters late last week and many only realised when they saw the possible routes online.

The council has apologised for the mistake which they say was down to "human error".

In a statement they say it "wasn't acceptable" for residents to find out through the press or social media.

Winter Olympics: Athletes to take part in opening ceremony

Seven athletes from the West Midlands will parade in the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in South Korea.

Over 17 days, more than 3,000 of the world's best athletes will compete in 102 medal events in 15 sports.

Charlotte Gilmartin
Getty Images

Charlotte Gilmartin from Redditch in Worcestershire will become the first from our region to compete, when she races in the short-track speed skating tomorrow.

You can follow all the action across BBC TV, radio and digital channels, as well as the BBC Sport website, where live streams and on-demand clips can be viewed on desktop, tablet and mobile.

The moment it's going to hit me is when you step out on the ice. Korea is the home of short track, so to be there... it feels electric."

Charlotte GilmartinOlympic short track skater

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be breezy and cloudy today with some sunshine but also wintry showers with top temperatures of 7C (45F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire southbound severe disruption, at J4 for A38 Bromsgrove.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed and slow traffic on M5 southbound at J4, A38 (Bromsgrove), because of a broken down vehicle.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire southbound severe disruption, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J6 for A449.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed and slow traffic on M5 southbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J6, A449 (Worcester), because of emergency repairs.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe accident: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe accident, between J6 for A449 and J5 for A38 Droitwich.

M5 Worcestershire - Queuing traffic on M5 northbound between J6, A449 (Worcester) and J5, A38 (Droitwich), because of all traffic being temporarily held and an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Another cold and wet day forecast for tomorrow

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

We are forecast more rain tomorrow and it's going to remain chilly, with temperatures only just rising above freezing.

Friday is forecast to be cold and wet in the West Midlands
Loosehead prop Callum Black

Worcester re-sign prop Callum Black from Ulster for 2018-19, while Scotland fly-half Duncan Weir is poised to join on loan.

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Severe disruption: M42 Worcestershire southbound

BBC News Travel

M42 Worcestershire southbound severe disruption, at J2 for A441 Alvechurch.

M42 Worcestershire - M42 lane closed on exit slip road and slow traffic southbound at J2, A441 (Alvechurch), because of a broken down vehicle.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Brexit forecasts bad news for West Midlands growth

Parts of the UK that backed a Leave vote would face the heaviest hit as a result of Brexit, according to estimates by government officials.

The forecasts, seen by MPs, model the 15-year impact of the UK staying in the single market, doing a trade deal with the EU or leaving without a deal.

Factory workers
PA

They suggest that in England, the North East and West Midlands would see the biggest slowdown in growth.

The government said the document did not represent its policy.

Council backs tax rise of nearly 5%

Council tax is set to rise by 4.94% in Worcestershire after budget plans were approved by the county council's cabinet

The authority said 60% of the extra money collected would be ring-fenced and spent on adult social care.

Worcestershire County Council
Google

At the same meeting, councillors approved plans to hand over responsibility for the joint museums service to Worcester City Council.

Cyclists wear masks against pollution in London

Enter your postcode to see what the air quality is like where you are living in Britain.

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BreakingArrests part of child sex exploitation investigation

Police say the arrests made in Worcester earlier today were made in response to reports of child sex exploitation and drugs trafficking.

They raided seven homes and three businesses in the south east of the city and six men from Worcester, one 19 years old and the rest in their 20s are being held in custody while enquiries are carried out.

Police jackets
BBC

They were arrested on suspicion of a range of offences, including rape, arranging child sex exploitation and supplying drugs.

Snow and ice warning extended

The yellow warning for snow and ice has now been extended across most of the West Midlands, starting 04:00 tomorrow.

Weather warning map
Met Office

The Met Office said roads and railways are likely to be affected by falling temperatures following a spell of rain and hill snow.

Five arrested in series of raids

Five people have been arrested in Worcester this morning after a series of police raids on 10 properties in the city.

West Mercia Police said the raids were "pre-planned warrants" and weren't linked to terrorism.

West Mercia Police car
BBC