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Snow shutdown unbelievable; letters.

THE almost complete stoppage of national life occasioned by the spattering of snow is scarcely believable.

When I was a child, our schools were kept open by every janitor, able-bodied teacher, and even the school dinner ladies being set to the task of digging out the playground with old-fashioned shovels.

The same "all hands to the deck" attitude applied to airports where the General Manager was often to be seen setting an example with his spade, alongside ground and cabin staff as well as pilots and navigators as they fought to keep runways clear.

Not only are we now far too reliant on often inadequate and unreliable mechanical means of snow removal, but the EU mandated adoption of the SI system of units has brought a touch of fatalism to how Britons regard low temperatures.

Zero degrees Celsius is now seen as a sign that civilisation as we know it must be temporarily suspended whereas 32 degrees Fahrenheit never had that effect!

JOHN DOUGLAS, Edinburgh

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SHUT DOWN: Traffic comes to a halt as snow falls
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Dec 12, 2010
Words:177
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