LOCAL bus travellers and residents expecting urgent mail were angry on Tuesday when services were abandoned because of the snow.
Several school buses and those on numerous urban and rural routes were postponed during the morning - especially at the rush hour - and many pupils had a day off school.
It had snowed heavily on Monday night and in the early hours of Tuesday morning, but it was a surprise to see many services grinding to a halt.
Angry staff at Rushmere Shopping Centre told the Portadown Times that many had to walk to work from Portadown and Lurgan with the main bus services “unnecessarily” out of commission.
One said, “It also meant that more cars were on the road, and drivers were coping admirably. We can’t understand how a relatively light covering of snow cause such disruption.”
As for the mail, again rural services were largely wiped out in the area. It was reported to the Portadown Times that a blanket ban was invoked, although some postal staff actually delivered in Portadown and Lurgan, with the snow thawed by lunchtime with the heavy rain. One rural dweller said, “It was much worse in the winter of 2010 and services weren’t affected like this.”
An Ulsterbus spokesman said, “It was pretty rough around the rush hour, but we managed to get most buses out by nine o’ clock and services were normal for the rest of the day. Some school routes suffered.”
And Felicity MacFarlane from the Royal Mail said, “Many parts of Northern Ireland were affected by the snow, although postmen and women did their utmost to deliver where it was safe to do so.” “We apologise to customers where deliveries were affected. Deliveries were back to normal by Wednesday and all mail was delivered.”