9am Briefing: City salt stocks dwindle as roads freeze up

COUNCIL chiefs today said they had just enough stocks of salt to combat Edinburgh's icy roads, but needed fresh supplies soon.

Supplies of salt to grit the roads are running dangerously low across many parts of the country as the big freeze continues to cause problems.

A council spokesman said: "We have got some salt left to keep us going but we are in need of a delivery. We are still prioritising the main routes, as was the situation before. We do have enough supplies to keep us going until we get a delivery this week."

Man injured in sledge accident

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A MAN had to be airlifted to hospital after being injured in a sledging accident in the Pentland Hills yesterday.

The accident, in the hills behind the Flotterstone Inn, happened just after 2.30pm. Details of the incident were unclear, but ambulance staff said the man, believed to be in his 30s, had badly injured his back whilst sledging.

Attempts were made to reach him by ambulance, but after that failed he was brought down the hillside on a stretcher pulled by a skidoo and taken to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary in an RAF helicopter.

Pony freed after barn collapse

FIREFIGHTERS had to free a Shetland Pony after heavy snow caused its barn at Northfield Farm, Longridge, West Lothian, to collapse. Samson, a young Shetland Pony, was not hurt in the collapse, but who was agitated by the incident.

Farm owners were unable to free the trapped pony and called Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service, who used a power saw, more commonly used to free people trapped in cars, to cut the animal free,

Freeze set to continue

FREEZING conditions are expected to continue across the Lothians throughout the rest of the week.

Forecasters said the early hours of tomorrow morning was likely to be the coldest, with temperatures plummeting to -8 degrees.

Further snowfall is also predicted tomorrow despite the possibility of more sunshine today.

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The temperature may creep above freezing tomorrow afternoon and Wednesday, but could drop again towards the weekend.

Tourists trapped on Cramond Island

THREE French tourists were rescued from the Forth after becoming trapped on Cramond Island.

One of the party, a 25-year-old woman, was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary to be treated for hypothermia, but it is understood that was a precautionary measure.

She had fallen into the water and soaked through in freezing conditions.

After attempting to wade ashore the three, all in their 20s, returned to the island to summon help.

OAP sets hair on fire

A PENSIONER set her hair on fire after attempting to light a cigarette on the gas burner of her cooker.

The woman, who is in her 70s, was taken to St John's Hospital in Livingston with burns to her scalp.

The accident happened at a house in Woodend Walk, Armadale, West Lothian, at around 9pm last night.

Royal seal for Tattoo

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EDINBURGH'S Military Tattoo is to add "Royal" to its title after the Queen decided to recognise its six decades of service to culture and entertainment.

The title has been conferred as part of her New Year honours.

From 4 January, the military spectacle will be named The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. It is the first time that one of Edinburgh's International Festival events has been awarded such a distinction.