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Author: BBC News - www.bbc.co.uk/news
Published on 16 December 2010 06:30 AM

Northern Ireland is braced for another spell of severe wintry weather, with heavy snow forecast to fall right across the country on Friday.

The Met Office has issued a weather warning which will be in force from noon on Thursday until 1800 on Friday.

More heavy snow showers are expected over the weekend.

Northern Ireland has seen some of the most severe December weather for many years with more than 700 schools forced to close because of snow.

BBC NI weather presenter Barra Best said Wednesday night's cold front will be followed by bitter Arctic winds which will cause temperatures to fall.

Although the thermometer will read 2 or 3C, the wind chill factor means it will feel more like -9 or -10C in places.

Temperatures will fall to below freezing over Friday night, but added wind chill during the early hours of Saturday will cause it to feel like -15C.

Regional Development Minister, Conor Murphy, has advised motorists to plan their journeys and check the latest travel advice.

Around 300 Road Service staff with 120 gritters and 11 snowblowers will be working to ensure main roads are salted.

Mr Murphy said that around 3,500 salt bins and 39,000 grit piles were stocked for use by members of the public to help prevent the formation of snow and ice on pavements and untreated roads.

The minister also gave advice to those wishing to help clear footpaths of snow or ice and said: "There is no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice on the pavement outside your home or business.

"I know this has been a concern and I want to reassure people that provided they clear snow and ice carefully they are unlikely to be held liable - this has been confirmed by the Attorney General."

For further advice on clearing snow and ice visit:
opens link in new window www.nidirect.gov.uk/iceandsnow

For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575