Monday, 2 February 2009

London Snow: An observation

In a really rare event, even Central London has snow. As of 1am Sunday, Most roads are a mess. The south circular was a crawl and the Hammersmith Flyover on the A4 looked like it was going to be touch and go and lo and behold, when I went around it, the descent was empty of vehicles, which suggests everyone had got stuck on the up ramp!

The most annoying thing was one or two morons who seemed to think that vehicles could react (as in slow down, turn or generally avoid their last-minute changes of speed or direction) as per a normal day. Of such attitudes, bent metal is made.

Only one collision was seen - Gunnersbury between some MPV and a couple of bollards. Vehicle in a sorry state. Hope nobody hurt.

What was plain from empirical evidence was that BMWs with low profile cars are absolutely PANTS in the snow. Beemer after beemer struggled. Even my tail-light Merc did significantly better. In fact, most cars with low profile tyres with big engines controlled by small brains were fishtailing about or just in the gutter.

I did, however, get momentarily stuck at the top of the hill of Bromley Road as it meets the A21, but two surfer/grunge dudes gave the beast a shove and I was on my way (thanks guys!). I did know the drill, but a slight drift got my offside into deeper snow so the extra drag caused my car to rotate into it despite my best efforts. I am certain my old Saab 96 V4 would have had a whale of a time with its narrow, tall tyres, massive ground clearance, front wheel drive and flat underbelly. In, I think, 90/1 we had ALOT of snow and it behaved very well.

Come to think of it, that might have also been the last time that Central London got a deep coating of snow.

Alas my proper camera is off station with Mrs Thornhill, so I am unable to get out and take some good quality pictures. So many roads and spaces look absolutely charming, but one realises that it is important to get home and put the car to bed. Tomorrow will be a commuter hell in a City that does not normally experience such wealther. I bet those in the North are going to have a chuckle at the Southerner's expense.


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

BMW's traction control system doesn't help. The Germans cocked this one up badly. My next door neigbour has a big 5-series Beemer and he really struggles to revers up the slight inclined driveway when the weather's like this. Which is fairly frequently during winter in the Peak District.