As the sun shines and we head into the first week of October 2015 it seems hard to imagine cold, freezing, and what could only be classed as arctic weather in the UK right now. However, if you believe recent reports in a number of newspapers right now there’s a strong suggestion that Britain is about to face its worst winter for over 50 years.
Whether this is true or not remains to be seen, but it wouldn’t do any harm to prepare for such an eventuality by having emergency measures in place.
Standby generators are one solution to consider, but are we really prepared for the onslaught of ice, fog and snow this year?
Many people regard the winter of 1962 -1963 as one of the worst on record so here we look at how people coped then and how they might react now.
Schools stayed open
Parents live in fear when it snows in the UK. They dread the thought of flurries during term time knowing there’s a genuine chance that schools will shut for the day. All that unforeseen childcare takes its toll on working households in 2015 so how did they cope with this situation back in the early 1960s?
The simple answer is schools didn’t or they rarely shut because most children walked or sledged their way to school.
Parents didn’t own as many cars back in the 1960s, the madness of the ‘school run’ was yet to be invented and caretakers at local schools worked hard to shovel snow and ice away.
Airports just coped
Remember the winter of 2010? Heavy snow brought Heathrow to a virtual standstill as airport officials struggled to cope with the conditions. Snow ploughs worked hard to clear the runways but only 10% of flights were allowed to leave, resulting in disgruntled passengers and flights remaining stranded.
Back in 1962 airports didn’t have to work to such tight schedules as they do today. Heathrow for example now works at 99% operating efficiency, and services can be disrupted at the merest sign of snow, so you could argue that airport travel has become worse instead of better over the years, especially when bad weather is involved.
Even the milkman delivered on time
Nothing stopped the milkman delivering your morning pint back in the big freeze of 1962 – 1963. In Earls Court, London, one happy chappy took to skis to ensure the milk run got through, can you imagine that happening today?
Times might have changed and whilst it’s unlikely your milk will arrive on skis this year, it’s still worth keeping a close eye on the weather so you can prepare for blackouts caused by gales, severe snowfalls, or unseasonal weather that could leave you stranded in an emergency.