The Met Office has forecasted a dramatic drop in temperatures across the UK starting this week. Cold air originating in Canada is set to spread southwards today, bringing sub-zero conditions to some parts of the country. Yellow warnings for Severe Weather have been issued in anticipation of increased wind and snow. Places inland are likely to see only rare snow showers. However, more frequent and disruptive snow showers are expected in northern/western Scotland, Northern Ireland and Irish Sea coastal areas. Eastern coasts will also be affected to a lesser extent around Friday and Saturday. Where snow settles, there is a chance temperatures may hit negative double digits at -8 to -10C. Overnight frosts, hail and snow showers are predicted, bringing 2-5 centimetres of snow at low ground and 10-30cm on ground beyond 200-300 metres. Some major publications are also reporting on the likelihood of 'thundersnow' events, when rain showers and stormy weather combine with snowfall to create blizzard-like conditions. Even a small amount of snowfall can cause disruption in the UK. Motorists are therefore advised to be cautious on the road during the cold snap. Fleet managers, too, are encouraged to be vigilant with vehicle maintenance. Some things to watch if you're managing the upkeep and leasing of vehicles this week include: Cooling System Frosty weather threatens damage to your vehicle's engine block when coolant freezes and expands. Refer to the vehicle owner's manual for recommended coolants designed for winter weather. Check for leaks and repair them if possible. If it's been a while, you should also ensure the cooling system has been flushed and the coolant refreshed. All of the above should prevent the system's critical failure. Fuel Tank In cold conditions, best practice is to keep your fuel tank above the halfway line. Letting your tank run low risks allowing water vapour to collect in the fuel line, which can freeze and prevent your vehicle from starting. A half-full tank prevents the collection of condensation and reduces the possibility of freezing. Windscreen Wipers It is all too easy for windscreen wipers to degrade before the vehicle owner realises, or it's too late. With rain, frost and snow likely to hit motorists this week, it's important to check that they are functional before planning any journeys by road. If possible, consider upgrading to heavy duty wipers which withstand ice and snow for only a small cost increase. Lights Ensuring all lights on your vehicles are operational is standard practice for most responsible motorists. However, with ice on the roads and increased braking times to be expected, it's best to ensure your brake lights and indicators are working. Check them manually as the warning lights on your dashboard may not be accurate. Battery A vehicle regularly exposed to freezing temperatures risks draining the charge from the battery and preventing it from starting. If you have the capacity to keep your vehicles in a garage, the extra warmth will help the batteries to hold their charge. If you're unsure whether you will be affected, check your local weather forecast. The Met Office has issued Severe Weather warnings for most of the UK.