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Snowstorm strands drivers in England

Jan. 26, 2013 at 12:10 PM

LANCASHIRE, England, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- Severe snowstorms across northern England left motorists stranded and forced the suspension of a number of flights Saturday, officials said.

More than a foot of snow fell on the M6 highway between Wigan and Standish, causing drivers to abandon their vehicles on the roadway, The Daily Telegraph reported.

The Highways Agency closed a section of the M6 overnight and reopened it Saturday morning, but the highway remained backed up for most of the day.

Motorist Ryan Murray said he was stuck on the highway for seven hours as he made his way from Aberdeen to Lancashire.

"The snow got worse and then started to come in sideways. You could not see at all. The motorway became an absolute car park. What was making it worse was once all the articulated lorries stopped they struggled to get moving again," Murray said.

In North Yorkshire, a couple had to be rescued from a snow drift on the North York Moors by the fire department.

A spokesman for North Yorkshire fire service said: "Due to extreme weather conditions a husband and wife had driven into a snow drift and were unable to get out. The wife had undergone surgery a week before and they had tried to dig themselves out for over two hours."

All flights at Leeds Bradford International Airport were suspended due to the snow, the news report said.

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