DOZENS of primary schools in rural areas of Tyrone have been forced to close amid the wintry weather.
Mid-Ulster was one of the hardest hit regions - with schools staying closed as temperatures dropped to as low as minus 8C.
Primary schools in Dungannon, Galbally, Pomeroy and Cookstown were closed including Ballytrea PS (Stewartstown), Derrylatinee PS (Dungannon), Orritor PS (Cookstown), St John's PS (Eglish), Churchtown PS (Cookstown), Crievagh PS (Cookstown), St Joseph's PS (Galbally), St Mary's PS (Pomeroy).
Some council services were also affected by the impassable roads. Bin collections were suspended on rural roads that had not been gritted.
An SELB spokesman said: "The recent spell of bad weather has inevitably brought disruption to school bus services throughout the Board's area. Board bus routes operate primarily in rural areas where the roads have not been treated with salt, which has left many minor roads in a treacherous condition.
"Whilst all drivers have been instructed to operate routes as normally as possible, the safety of pupils is paramount and the ultimate decision on road safety is left to the drivers discretion on a day to day basis and the Board cannot guarantee that all routes will be fully serviced. It is therefore vital that parents make sure their children know what to do if the bus is late or does not arrive."
Read the rest of the story in this week's issue of the TYRONE TIMES