Police Scotland resorted to twitter this morning to reassure residents in Edinburgh and the Lothians after hundreds of people reported being woken by two loud thunder claps around 4.30am.

Many believed that the noise had been caused by an explosion however it was actually a phenomenon known as “thundersnow” which is created when thunder and lightning combine with a heavy snowstorm.

After receiving a number of calls, Police Scotland’s control room tweeted: “We have received a number of calls regarding people concerned about explosions heard.

“Please do not be alarmed, we are currently experiencing thunder and lightning.”

The snow caused disruption across many areas, including temporarily closing the Queensferry Crossing which was closed for several hours in both directions before reopening about 08:30.