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No coaches or lorries in Northern France


PaulT

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I heard something about this, but I'm a bit confused as it seems a blanket advisory.

The bison fute and other sites show bad weather across parts of the north, but the Pas de Calais area looks clear. Each of the towns near to where we are travelling later in the week are showing clear of snow and traffic running smoothly.

Can anyone up in that area add anything to help? We're to travel via Eurotunnel and are staying at Le Wast. I'm planning emailing the hotel to see how things are around them, but I'm interested in the differing site info.

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This was what I reported of the situation on another forum as of Sunday evening, more snow is expected this afternoon:

I did an 80 mile roud trip in La Somme and the Pas de Calais last night and it was very difficult going, there is about 12" of snow drifting much deeper in places, the real problem is that it is over the kerbs where they exist and on all roads one cannot make out the road from the fields either side, during blizzards there is snowblindness also to deal with.

The RN's are generally in better condition as the snow is compacted and in some case less thick if a chasse neige has preceded it, the problem is that as soon as one or two cars venture out they creep along in procession at a snails pace and far to close to each other and very quickly an incident occurs and the road is blocked.

Eventually I had to stick to RD's and where I was unable to get up a couple of hills use chemin rurals, I had to dig myself out and use metale deployée snow ramps 3 times.

On the return journey at 7pm which took two hours I only saw 2 vehicles and they were 4*4's. When I got home I could see that the snow was drifted on my parking so took a little run up to be able to at least get up the kerb, the car beached itself on the trottoir and the snow level was higher than the bottom of the doors.

For the first time I would agree, dont venture out unless necessary, the parking of the factroy opposite is virtually empty today, the only vehicles there being the ones abandoned over the weekend.



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An update.

I live on a route departmentale next to the main town and opposite the factory which employs around 2000 from the immediate area thus the road is the first to be gritted and snowploughed.

This morning very few vehicles came in, most people if they didnt throw a sicky arrived by foot, I was out clearing my frontage late lunch time, can anyone confirm that we are responsible for accidents on the trottoir in front of our properties?

Anyway there was a steady but very slow procession of vehicles, mainly 4*4's, I hadnt realised just how many smaller family vehicles are so equipped, and the smaller front wheel drive vehicles, not a BMW in sight!

They all seem to have eschewed the car parks as presumably they are too slippery and have parked on the roadside thus making an already narrow road dangerously narrow, I was also amazed by how close the majority of the vehicles were following each other clearly with no idea of stopping distances, I witnessed a couple of minor bumps that with typical exaggeration became major incidents blocking the road with drivers of the other vehicles joining in the arguments instead of helping to clear a passage. 

In my snow deplacing efforts I have managed to bury a couple of cars that are pretty much blocking the whole footpath outside my house, they may have managed to drive in early this morning but will have problems leaving [6]

They have announced an arret prefectoral banning all poids lourds from the roads and the routiers are just having to bear it out in their cabs at the side of the road, some of them have been there since Saturday, I did however see one semi-remorque make a delivery to the factory perhaps from close by.

I have heard no mention of the autoroutes A1 and A26 since they were closed.

Go carefull out there, if you venture off of the RN's take a sleeping bag, food and water and make sure you fuel tank has sufficient to keep the engine running for heat for an extended period if you become stuck.

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Chancer, thanks very much for your posts; it doesn't make good reading, but it is good to hear what's going on around you. I regularly check forecasts, Bison Fute etc, but on the ground info is so useful.  [:)]

The forecasts for SE UK seem a lot better as the week goes on, even in Kent, which does tend to have bad snow at times. We've booked a hotel near Eurotunnel, so we can go over the day before, and as it's Holiday Inn, we can cancel up to 4pm on the day of stay. I've emailed the hotel in Pas de Calais to see what's happening there. We don't have far to go once out of the tunnel, just about 20 minutes using the A16, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

I'll be packing all the useful items in case of being stranded, plus Gemonimo's suggestion of a candle to stay warm by if necessary, instead of switching the engine on. I've already put some nightlights and matches in the emergency box!

Not having been able to see my son over the weekend, due to bad weather/oil tanker overturned on M25, I don't fancy also missing out on a very relaxed Christmas with good food! We're also hoping to call in on son on the way back after Christmas.  [:)]

If you've any more weather news of the area, I'd be glad to hear it.

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Well I am not getting out and about so can only tell you what I see outside my building but I am on a well used route departmentale.

We only had a few flakes of snow yesterday, I think the P-D-C may have had more, on the road outside the snow got flattened and gradually melted to slush so was passable for all vehicles that tried including a few poids lourds so I think the arret prefectoral must have been lifted, it hasnt re-frozen overnight no doubt due to the salt that was spread before the snow fell.

I would imagine that the motorways must now be open so transiting this area should cause you little problem.

The only thing I can add is to try and avoid busy periods rush hour etc as around here at least they drive like complete clowns having no idea of stopping distances, that you need more speed going up hills and less coming down, any junctions with even shallow descents approaching them look like breakers yards, a minor tap between two cars quickly becomes a major international incident, people just dont think to pull out of the way of the remaining traffic and the parking around the tabacs and boulangeries is even more suicidal than normal.

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Chancer, thankyou very much for that update. [:)]

I've heard from the hotel that all main roads are clear and conditions are good, and that the part we were particularly worried about from main road to hotel is also clear. Obviously things can change, but they stressed that access was good and it was drizzling!

We're heading off to a hotel near Ashford tomorrow so we're near the Tunnel, going via Hastings to see our son, who couldn't make it  here at the weekend.

I heard that Eurotunnel was running 2 hours late, so phoned up and changed our booking to 10.00 on Thursday morning, instead of late afternoon. Since then I've heard it's up to 3 hours late! Oh glory!! [:(]

It will be an interesting trip in another respect; it will be our first trip in the new car, which we picked up last week. It's a Prius, so there's quite a lot to learn. I'm definitely leaving it to OH, especially this trip!

Sending you very best wishes for Christmas,  stay warm! [:D]

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Draytonboy, when I spoke to Eurotunnel earlier this afternoon they said the delay from UK was 2 hours and from France it was 60 minutes; 1 train per hour was running at that time. It later went to a 3-hour delay, according to R4!

Good luck with the roads on both sides of the Channel. The forecasts I've just looked at say winds and fog for the Pas de Calais tomorrow, so temps above freezing. More snow and fog, with temps below freezing in the south of UK, around Folkestone, Ashford areas.

Good luck on the roads and with the Tunnel.  [:)]

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Our removal man has all our worldly possessions.

He intended to leave his premises with them today - somewhere between Bayonne and Mimizan - and drive up to cross the channel at around midnight.

Can someone reassure me that this is passable and possible and that I just might see my stuff delivered in Cambridge tomorrow?
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What snow, there is no snow, it is clear of snow; you are all talking borrocks. In fact it is the first day of Spring as the bulbs are poking their hards through and the birds have got that look already. And if ever any bird ever gets that look in her eye over me i shall strip my fathers off and get ready for action.
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[quote user="Cathy"]Anyone who knows the conditions in Northern France, please keep posting here.  I have a daughter who set off at lunchtime today from Northern Germany via Belgium and Paris.

[/quote]

 

Cathy

hope she is now safely with you.  Conditions in our part of Germany have been at best very bad with the same bans of trucks as in Northern france.

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Thanks a lot for that cheering news, jetlag!  [:D] I suspected that Eurotunnel were underplaying the queues, as that link to twitter suggsted much longer waits over the last few hours.

I'm off to finish packing, then off to vist son no.1 on the south coast, who couldn't get here on Sunday, then on to the hotel near the tunnel, ready for an early start to France tomorrow.

Good luck for furniture, daughter and travels - and hope everyone has a warm, happy time at Christmas!  [:)]

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Things seem to be puzzling generally.

West Country supposed to be terrible, yet two lots of friends have travelled from and to Cornwall from London and Surrey without any problems, in fact quicker than usual as not so much traffic.

HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE - hope you all get to your destinations.

WendyG

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Ooops!!!!! Just had another call from other half, all called and set to go on train, then withdrawn and delayed, sorry! He says they are due to board in 2 mins, so hopefully this time all will be good. Good luck to all you travellers out there!
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[quote user="andyh4"]

[quote user="Cathy"]Anyone who knows the conditions in Northern France, please keep posting here.  I have a daughter who set off at lunchtime today from Northern Germany via Belgium and Paris.  [/quote]

Cathy

hope she is now safely with you.  Conditions in our part of Germany have been at best very bad with the same bans of trucks as in Northern france.[/quote]

No she hasn't but I gather the family with whom she is travelling took a break in Koln (Cologne).  I am hoping that she will arrive sometime today.  Once she arrives, I'll report on the conditions.

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