Black ice on the A194 (M) has caused two minor accidents on Wearside between the A182, Washington Highway, and the B1288, Havannah Interchange.
More top news
A decision will be announced on the fate of three GP surgeries in Hartlepool later.
The UK only managed to rank 20th on the World Economic Forum's (WEF) index of nations - a slide from 9th position in 2006.
"Last season is fading from view in the rear-view mirror with bright skies ahead for the rest of the season."