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Snow to cost firms £230m

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The Forum of Private Business (FPB) says that abandoned commutes, dwindling retail sales and postponed journeys could cost the economy around £230m as the winter chill endures.

Meanwhile the Met Office warns of little respite in coming days as yet more snow is reported to be on its way. In some parts of Britain more than 30cm fell in the last 24 hours.

For businesses allowing employees to work from home, the FPB warned that employment law still applied and that bosses should create contingency plans factoring in things like health and safety.

"Employees make businesses grow and losing key staff because of the weather, even for just a day, is very damaging, particularly in the current economic climate," said FPB research manager, Tom Parry.

"It is important that employers put in place contingency plans for these occasions and that these plans comply with employment law.

"For example, home working might be seen as a solution – obviously not for manufacturers and retailers – but business owners should be aware that it is their responsibility to ensure that employees’ houses meet health and safety standards."

Related article:Bad weather, good news?

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