SNOW ploughs and gritters are standing ready to clear Scotland's roads today as snow and fierce winds sweep in from the west.

Councils across Scotland had people working throughout the night in preparation for the big freeze, which is expected to hit this afternoon.

Farmers in some areas are on standby to help sweep snow, while the AA predicts 50% more breakdowns than normal today.

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Aberdeenshire is forecast 1in to 4in of snow in the 24 hours from noon, with winds set to reach 50mph. The Highlands and west Aberdeenshire will get 4in to 6in, while the Cairngorms may see 8in.

The east coast and the southern border are also expected to see snow. Northern and western areas may be spared heavy snow.