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We've had the snow, now comes a flood! Met Office warns of heavy rains.

THE North East once more battled with snow last night although heavy rain is predicted to move in this weekend.

The region was set for up to 10cm of snow during the evening, forecasters at the Met Office said.

Fire teams were called out after two cars became stuck in a snow drift in Tow Law, County Durham.

A fire engine was used to get the vehicles out while four passengers were helped by an emergency service crew.

The area had been seriously affected by snow drifts, a spokesperson for the fire service said. "We advise members of the public to take appropriate precautions when driving in winter conditions and only make essential journeys," he added.

In North Walbottle, Tyne & Wear, it emerged people on one street had joined together to hire a digger to move snow.

"No one was doing anything about it so about 12 of us clubbed together to rent a JCB for the afternoon and clear the snow," said Marion Palmer, who lives on Garner Close.

The group paid a total of PS120 for the private hire of the digger, she said.

Other communities in the area had expressed an interest in following suit. All schools in the region were open on Friday apart from Broom Cottages Primary in Ferryhill, County Durham, which was closed because of heating problems.

The Met Office's forecasters have put a yellow rain warning out for tomorrow following an ice warning today.

There are worries about possible flooding on some of the region's roads.

"Rain is a very effective way of melting snow, especially with temperature going up as it will be on Sunday," the Met Office's Dan Williams said.

"We could then see quite a rapid thaw." The medium-term outlook is unsettled, he added.

For the latest travel updates and breaking news, visit: www.chroniclelive.co.uk

CAPTION(S):

TAKING COVER Many people sheltered under umbrellas as the snow fell

FLURRY Shoppers in Newcastle city centre walk through another snow flurry yesterday afternoon
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jan 26, 2013
Words:333
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