WORCESTERSHIRE is bracing itself for heavy snowfall and blizzard conditions on Friday as the cold snap looks set to worsen.

The Met Office has issued an amber warning for the West Midlands.

A depth of 10-15cm of snow is widely expected, with 25cm or more falling over hills and on higher ground between 4am and 6pm.

Blizzard conditions are also likely as winds strengthen from the southwest, creating the potential for some severe disruption on the county’s roads.

Eddy Carroll, the Met Office’s chief forecaster, said: “The snow is expected to be heaviest through Friday morning, slowly weakening and clearing east during the second half of the day. Clearly there is the potential for significant disruption to people’s plans.”

The weather is predicted to improve over the weekend but further outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow are expected to push in from the west at times. The snow that has fallen will be slow to melt and ice will continue to be a risk, especially at night.

An amber warning means people need to be prepared for the weather and take steps to protect themselves from the impacts of the severe weather.

Worcestershire County Council’s gritters were due out in force again on all primary and secondary routes from 4pm today.

Some sections of road identified as more hazardous were set to receive an additional treatment from 4.30am, with freezing fog, light snow or sleet a possibility during the night.

With temperatures reaching lows of -5C overnight, West Mercia Police received reports of several accidents on the roads due to the icy conditions.

The AA has told motorists to take measures to prepare for the continuing cold weather and coming snow, including carrying out basic checks, carrying plenty of warm clothing, blankets, de-icer and a scraper as well as food, a hot flask and a fully-charged mobile.