News

Clearing the snow is good for you

Posted on: November 27, 2014

Until last week the American city of Buffalo, in New York state, was known to many around the world as the home of Bruce Nolan - the down on his luck TV reporter portrayed by Jim Carrey in the 2003 film ‘Bruce Almighty’. That was until Mother Nature thrust it into the global spotlight by burying large areas of the city under as much as 8ft of snow, with flurries enhanced by a phenomenon known as the ‘lake effect’.

Lake effect snow is commonly the result of cold winds moving across large expanses of warm open water, such as lakes. As it does the water vapour freezes and is deposited on shores downwind in the form of snow. In the case of Buffalo, record low temperatures in the lower atmosphere on Tuesday combined with warmer than average water in Lake Erie to create a highly unstable atmosphere in which thundersnow flourished and levels of snowfall increased significantly.

Snow Clearance

As residents of Buffalo attempted to deal with the deluge of snow on their homes and businesses it was reported by the BBC that two people sadly died from heart attacks whi

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Changing nature of weather forecasting

Posted on: November 21, 2014

You may have heard recently that the Met Office will next year take possession of a new £97million supercomputer that will significantly improve weather forecasting and climate modelling. This addition will be the tenth high performance computer the Met Office has had since 1959 and the data it generates will further advance weather forecasting - a process that has fascinated humans for millennia.

  • In 650BC the Babylonians used cloud patterns and astrology to predict the weather.
  • Written works by Aristotle in 340BC included early accounts of water evaporation, weather phenomena and earthquakes.
  • Around 300BC both Chinese and Indian astronomers developed their own methods of weather forecasting known as pattern recognition.


Many of these ancient forecasting methods relied on observed patterns of events - for example, it might be noted that fair weather traditionally follows a particular red sunset. These observations accumulated over many years and resulted in the creation of sayings, proverbs and folklores that would provide people with an indica

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Winter conditions on their way

Posted on: November 13, 2014

Two weeks into November and we have already witnessed our first frosts of the autumn, with overnight temperatures falling as low as -4 degrees Celsius in some areas of the country last week. With autumnal weather beginning to take hold, the Met Office has recently re-launched its ‘Get Ready for Winter’ initiative to encourage home and business owners to check that they are adequately prepared for any cold or wintery weather that could come our way.

“Building on the success of the ‘Get Ready for Winter’ initiative in previous years, government departments and our partners in the voluntary sector will again be providing advice that will help individuals, families and communities prepare and stay safe this winter. From tips on preparing your property and vehicle for adverse weather conditions, to the latest weather forecasts and warnings, the initiative will once more provide a one-stop shop for all winter weather-related information.” - Oliver Letwin, Minister for Government Policy

Being Prepared

There are a number of relatively

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Charity begins with hospices

Posted on: November 6, 2014

A few months ago, when the Ice Watch cleaner retired, the staff agreed to do the cleaning themselves and to donate the cost they saved to their three chosen charities; St Elizabeth Hospice, East Anglian Children's Hospices in Ipswich and Cambridge and Richard House Children's Hospice in Beckton London.

This week the first of three cheques for £500 was presented to Brian Taylor, the lead fundraiser for St Elizabeth Hospice. Matthew Neill, one of Ice Watch's sales executives, did the honours on behalf of the Company.

Commenting on the occasion, Paul Bowling the Chairman of Ice Watch said: “We all appreciate the wonderful work the hospices do for our communities. We are proud to provide our winter gritting services to them free of charge and to make donations whenever we can. These places depend on public support without which they would cease to exist and we are committed to helping them whenever we can.”

Staff at Ice Watch also run an internal Tuck Shop and profits from that are distributed to the hospices. Last year Laura Bowling, the Chairman's daughter, even ran

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