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Friday, 31 January, 2003, 13:25 GMT
Pregnant commuter's nightmare journey
London map
As the UK continues to recover from Thursday's severe snowstorms, BBC News Online talked to one London commuter whose journey home - a matter of miles - took nine hours.

Yocklan Herbert, 37, works in the City and is eight months pregnant.


I left work in the City at about 5pm and, although it had started snowing a bit, I thought I would get home absolutely fine - no problem.

When I got to the station they announced the Northern line train may be stopping at Archway and the left hand didn't seem to know what the right was doing.

I got to Archway and there was no information as to what we should do or what would be happening.

I decided to try and get a bus. I saw one go by and thought they must be running and then waited about an hour and a half and no more came by.

Yocklan Herbert
Yocklan Herbert was left stranded

I started thinking 'I am not going to risk my life and the life of my child' and so I went back to the station where there were three other pregnant women.

The station staff told us we would have a black cab in 18 minutes, which turned into an hour, and eventually we all gave up on it.

By this time it was about 10pm and one of the ladies' husbands turned up and we managed to jump in his car.

We crawled all the way home - with everyone needing the toilet - and didn't get in until 2am.

It was a complete nightmare.

The reaction to snow in this country is crazy because, abroad, you take it in your stride and everyone prepares.

In Norway, for instance, it snows all the time and you just get on with it.

Here, nobody knew what was happening.

Everyone paid lip service but no-one was prepared to take a decision or do anything tangible.

It was chaos.


Talking PointTALKING POINT
A snow plough passes an abandoned car near Fylingdales, North Yorkshire Snow storm
Your experiences of the extreme conditions

Heavy snow swept across Britain today, with northern England badly affected
Shivering in the snow

See also:

29 Jan 03 | UK
30 Jan 03 | England
31 Jan 03 | England
31 Jan 03 | Scotland
31 Jan 03 | England
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