Depth: 10 km
Distances: 3017 km S of Acapulco de Juárez, Mexico / pop: 673,000 / local time: 13:31:33.6 2021-02-18
Depth: 10 km
Distances: 534 km WSW of Apia, Samoa / pop: 40,400 / local time: 05:30:51.8 2021-02-19
Depth: 2 km
Distances: 44 km SSE of Zagreb, Croatia / pop: 698,000 / local time: 13:08:40.6 2021-02-18
Depth: 10 km
Distances: 409 km NNE of Nouméa, New Caledonia / pop: 93,000 / local time: 17:37:31.2 2021-02-18
Snow blanketed parts of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Israel on Wednesday, covering areas it has not reached in years, disrupting traffic and postponing vaccination campaigns against COVID-19 and even exams at some universities.
It snowed for the first time in years in Marjayoun in southern Lebanon, and in Bayda in northeast Libya.
Gale force winds knocked out electricity in vast parts of Lebanon, forcing many Lebanese, already used to power cuts, to rely on generators for longer hours. Rescuers pulled four motorists out of their snow-covered cars, the National News Agency said.
The first snow this winter in the Syrian capital, Damascus, did not prevent the Premier League soccer tournament from going ahead, as Army Sports Club and Al-Karamah faced off despite the snow that covered the pitch, the Syrian Al-Watan daily reported .
In the mountains of Syria’s Sweida province, snow was as high as 15 cm (6 inches), according to the official state news agency SANA. Roads in some provinces were blocked. In the central province of Hama, bulldozers shoveled snow to open roads while vehicles skidded on ice, causing traffic disruption.
The University of Damascus called off mid-term exams scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday in all its branches around Syria because of the extreme weather conditions. The country’s ports remained open. Later, local authorities in the provinces of Sweida, Quneitra, Daraa and Tartous suspend school on Thursday due to the storm and heavy snowfall.
In the opposition-held northwestern Syria, civil defense teams have been building dirt mounds since Tuesday around camps for the displaced to prevent rain from flooding the crowded areas. Nearly 3 million displaced people live in northwestern Syria, mostly in tents and temporary shelters. Heavy rainfall last month damaged over 190 displacement sites, destroying and damaging over 10,000 tents.
In neighboring Lebanon, Storm Joyce hit late Tuesday with gale force winds registering between 85 km/h (52 miles/h) and 100 km/h (62 miles/h). The storm is expected to get stronger Thursday.
Breaking a warm spell, the storm brought heavy rainfall, a sharp drop in temperatures and the heaviest snow fall in Lebanon this year. Snow is expected to cover areas of altitudes as low as 400 meters, according to the meteorological department. Nearly a dozen roads in eastern and northern Lebanon were closed to traffic because of the snow. A beachside club and restaurant were submerged in water as waves nearly 4 meters (13 feet) high slammed onto the shore.
The Israeli Meteorological Service forecast heavy thunderstorms and cold temperatures across much of the country, with snowfall at higher altitudes expected later on Wednesday, including in Jerusalem. On Wednesday night, Israeli police closed the main road between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem due to snow.
Heavy snowfall covered the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights near the border with Syria.
In Jordan, the COVID-19 vaccination drive was suspended due to severe weather conditions. Schools and universities also put off classes. Jordan’s Prime Minister Bishr al-Khasawneh announced that Thursday will be an official holiday for both the public and private sector due to the snow storm.
Osama al-Tarifi, director of the operating room of the Arabia Weather site, said snow has reached 20 cm (8 inches) in the mountains of Ajloun in northern Jordan, where snowfall has been non-stop since Tuesday night. Heavy snow is expected in the capital, Amman, on Wednesday.
Wind exceeded 100 km/hour (62 miles/h) in some areas in Jordan.
In Libya, snow blanketed the country’s northeast mountains as snowfall continued since Tuesday, covering forests and roads in some areas in the North African country.
Residents of the Jabal al-Akhdar area in the far northeast part of Libya took their children out for fun, some making snowmen and others starting snowball fights.
“I was surprised, actually, by the number of families who came here to take pictures to remember the snow,” said Ali al-Shairi, an amateur photographer from the eastern city of Bayda, which is known for recurrent snow in Libya but has not seen any for a couple of years.
In neighboring Egypt, heavy rain and windy weather prevailed on Wednesday and was expected to last into Thursday, the country’s meteorological agency said. Authorities in South Sinai province, which includes touristic hubs, canceled touristic activities, including safaris and cruises to weather the storm.
Courtesy of startribune.com
The snow storm “Medea,” which left Athens covered in snow Tuesday, passed through the city on Wednesday and is making its way toward Crete.
The winter storm has left over 40,000 homes in Attica, especially in Athens’ suburbs, without electricity for a second day.
After heavy snowfall and strong winds downed trees across the region, Attica’s power grids faced widespread damage.
Unable to fight the frigid temperatures by turning on their heaters, many people across the region, mainly in the northern suburbs of Athens, have faced a chilly blackout lasting for days.
Greece’s power grid operator, the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (HEDNO), announced that the regions of Dionysos, Anoixi, Ekali, and Agios Stefanos have been particularly affected.
Nikos Hardalias, Deputy Minister for Civil Protection, stated that the blackouts across Attica are expected to last until Wednesday evening as crews work tirelessly to restore power during the day.
Hardalias noted that HEDNO has led a massive effort to fix damaged power grids and restore electricity as quickly as possible, but faces extraordinary difficulties, since the storm impacted all of Greece:
“I want to make it clear that there has been an enormous effort made by HEDNO’s crews,” he stated.
“This is the first time that we have had a weather phenomenon impact all of Greece, as the snow storm did not just affect Attica.”
Anastasios Manos, CEO of HEDNO, highlighted that such a severe snow storm has not been seen in Attica for many years: “HEDNO found itself facing an unprecedented situation, one that has not recurred for decades.”
HEDNO has sent out over 600 teams of 1,500 workers to restore power to Greeks who have been left in the darkness.
In the northern suburbs of Athens alone, there are 400 crew members working on a 24-hour-basis to fix the area’s power grids.
Due to the severity of the situation, Greece’s military has also provided aid in removing downed trees that are blocking major roads and fixing damaged power grids.
Courtesy of greekreporter.com
A snow storm engulfed Lebanon on Wednesday along with heavy winds and torrential rainfalls, the National News Agency reported.
Temperatures on the coast reached 7 degrees Celsius compared to previous years when the average temperature did not drop below 11 degrees.
Abdel Rahman al-Zawawi, head of the weather department at Rafic Hariri International Airport, was quoted by Elnashra news website as saying that this is the coldest storm to hit Lebanon this year.
He also indicated that Thursday will be the coldest day of the year so far in Lebanon, with snow expected to fall at altitudes of less than 600 meters in some areas.
Also, the report said snow fell for the first time in years in some villages in Marjeyoun, southern Lebanon.
Civil Defense teams intervened in several areas of the country including Faqra and Kfardebian in Mount Lebanon to remove the snow and allow smooth transportation of citizens in the area.
Courtesy of xinhuanet.com
Nearly three-quarters of the U.S. is snow-covered, and there’s still more than a month to go before spring. Data from the National Weather Service shows only three states are without snow: Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.
Several states that don’t usually see much snow are nearly covered. Southern states, like Texas and Oklahoma, have been especially hit hard this winter, with record-breaking cold, snow, ice and widespread power outages.
Photo Couresty Of wpxi.com
Courtesy of wpxi.com