Winter Storms, Cold Snap Disrupt Travel in Europe, Danube Frozen, 3 Killed in Kosovo

By Paul Riegler on 11 February 2012
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Severe winter weather caused significant disruptions in air and train travel in Europe while causing death and injury in many countries.

Temperatures fell to -32° C (-25.6° F) in the Bieszczady Mountain region of Poland. Police reported that eight people died in house fires.

Portions of the Danube, which flows for 2,872 km (1,785 miles) through nine countries including Germany, Austria, Slovakia, and Hungary, are closed to traffic for 700 km (440 miles) in Romania due to ice and freezing conditions.

Fiumicino airport in Rome experienced numerous flight cancellations after the second snowstorm this week hit the region. The Coliseum was also closed and Reuters reported that several buildings in Italy were evacuated due to fears that the weight of the snow might cause structural damage.  Rome’s last major snowstorm was 26 years ago.

Elsewhere in Italy, 10 people were injured in Trieste, as winds reached 130 km/h (80 mph).

In Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, the heaviest snow in 63 years was reported, most roads and rail service were shut down, and hundreds of villages were left isolated.  An avalanche in Restelica, a village in Kosovo, killed three people and left nine others missing.

The unrelenting cold weather, with temperatures well below freezing, has resulted in weather-related deaths in France, Hungary, Italy, and Poland. Officials in the Ukraine reported that over 131 people had died last weekend.

(Photo: Jonathan Spira)

Accura News

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