THERE were chaotic scenes across Battle and Rye on Monday evening, with heavy snowfall and icy conditions causing gridlock on the region’s roads.
Abandoned cars, buses and lorries were a common sight across rural Rother as frustrated motorists chose to leave their vehicles at the roadside after spending hours stuck in traffic jams just trying to get home.
There were significant tailbacks and delays on the A2100, A21 and A259.
The problem was compounded by high winds, which caused massive snow drifts to form and blew down trees.
One large old oak tree came down at the top of Chapel Hill/Cottage Lane in Sedlescombe on Tuesday morning, blocking the road and bringing down telephone lines.
Police closed Battery Hill in Fairlight after a fallen tree rendered the stretch ‘impassable’.
There were reports of overturned cars in Udimore Road, Udimore, and in Caldbec Hill in Battle.
A lorry and a car collided on Hastings Road in Battle and a woman had to be cut free by firefighters after her car plunged into a ditch in East Guldeford.
The woman was taken to the Conquest Hospital in Hastings with minor injuries, but was later discharged.
Inspector James Scott, of the Rother Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “Over Monday 11 into Tuesday 12 March around 100 road related calls were received in relation to the Rother area. Some of these were enquiries about road condition, others were reporting fallen trees or abandoned cars but many were relating to collisions.
“The A2100, A21, King Offa Way, Bexhill, Battery Hill, Fairlight and A259, East Guldeford were the main roads affected by the weather conditions throughout Monday with reports of trees falling and collisions during rush hour.
“Luckily no one was seriously injured and police officers worked alongside partner agencies to get traffic moving as soon as possible.
“Officers that were unable to get to their normal place of work attended their nearest police station to help out in the community.
“Others extended their shifts to aid local residents in freeing vehicles and giving advice.
“Although we advise people not to drive at all in severe weather I would like to thank those members of the public who drove sensibly and urge everyone to remember to compensate and change your driving to suit the road conditions.”
A number of schools chose to shut at Monday lunchtime and almost every primary and secondary school had closed to pupils on Tuesday.
Rother District Council refuse collections were suspended.