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Heaviest snowfall in 18 years sees 999 calls soar

PUBLISHED: 16:52 11 February 2009 | UPDATED: 09:37 12 August 2010

EMERGENCY phone calls to police about snowball fights flooded in last week as council services struggled to get back to normal.

EMERGENCY phone calls to police about snowball fights flooded in last week as council services struggled to get back to normal.

There were 144 999 calls to Bromley police about snowballs between February 1 and 5 after the heaviest snowfall the South East has seen for 18 years.

This comes on top of the 384 emergency calls the police received about traffic incidents relating to snow, including cars getting stuck in it.

One man even went into Bromley police station telling officers his wife had slipped in the snow and said: "what are you lot going to do about the pavements?"

In nearby Greenwich there were a mere eight calls about snowball fights, mainly from Abbey Wood and Plumstead, while Bexley police had 82 calls.

As the snow that ground the capital to a halt last week started melting away, services still struggled to get back to normal.

Schools only returned to usual service last Thursday despite the buses services running as normal last Tuesday.

Bromley council advised schools to reopen last Wednesday but 16 still remained closed on that day while in Bexley only two were shut.

With refuse collection teams being used to help grit the icy streets, normal collections only started to get back to normal on Monday in Bexley.

Two weeks worth of recycling is being collected this week and council bosses expect workers to have caught up with the backlog by the end of the week.

But a spokesperson for Bromley council said refuse collections will not get back to normal until the end of this week.

A handful of Bromley parks were closed and reopened on Wednesday due to health and safety reasons.

However, Bexley council said that all recreation grounds remained open throughout the wintry conditions.

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