Russia’s Crimean Bridge closed for first-ever time due to heavy snow and state of emergency declared
For the first time since its completion in 2018, Europe’s longest bridge has been closed due to a heavy snowfall. The Black Sea region is currently going through an uncharacteristic cold spell.
On Thursday night, Crimea saw a snowstorm cover the peninsula, prompting warnings from local authorities to refrain from travel. The bridge itself was shut due to “lack of visibility, heavy snowfall, and strong side winds.”
Construction of the Crimean Bridge started in 2016 and was completed two years later. The multibillion-dollar infrastructure project connects Taman in Krasnodar Region, on the Russian mainland, to Kerch in Crimea. As well as cars, the structure allows for trains to cross. At 19km, it is the longest bridge in Europe.
As of Friday afternoon, around 280 vehicles were stuck on the crossing, with many more in a traffic jam on either side of the Kerch Strait, which separates Crimea from the neighbouring Krasnodar Region. Although it was initially shut in both directions, the traffic police have opened travel towards mainland Russia but won’t allow cars to pass over to the Black Sea peninsula.
According to Taman, the local highway management agency, traffic will be restored after the evacuation of vehicles damaged by the snowfall.
Southern Russia has seen uncharacteristically chilly temperatures in recent weeks. While Moscow is known for its cold winters, Crimea and other parts of the region are normally above zero in February. On Thursday, Kerch saw 27mm of snowfall overnight, almost reaching the month’s norm of 31mm in just one day. However, temperatures are expected to be positive next week.
On Friday afternoon, the peninsula’s authorities decided to declare a state of emergency in four areas.
Courtesy of rt.com
“Unprecedented” situation; no storm like it in decades in Greece
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
Nearly 75% of country snow-covered after massive winter storm in the USA
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
‘Snow apocalypse’ blankets frozen Moscow
Heavy snowfalls have buried Moscow in massive snow piles, disrupting transport, delaying flights and making it tough to get around for pedestrians braving strong winds and temperatures of minus 15 Celsius (5 Fahrenheit).
The snowfall started late on Thursday and was expected to end on Sunday. Russia’s emergency service advised people to stay away from trees, warning of winds gusts of 18 metres per second (40 mph). “It’s a real snowstorm, a snow Armageddon, a snow apocalypse. This is not a practice alert, but a combat alert,” Evgeny Tishkovets from the weather service Fobos was quoted by RIA news agency as saying before the snowfall began.
By early Saturday, snow depth in the city reached 56 centimetres (22 inches), Fobos said. This was close to exceeding a record high of 60 cm for accumulated snow on a Feb. 13, it said.
On Friday Moscow saw record snowfall for a Feb. 12, breaking the previous record set for the date in 1973, Russian news agencies reported citing the national meteorological service.
There have been multiple flight delays at the airports in Moscow, a city of more than 12 million people. Unusually for a weekend, traffic was jammed in many places.
Around 60,000 people were working to clear the streets, the Moscow mayor’s office said.
Courtesy of reuters.com
Madrid Paralysed’ by Heavy Snow Storms as Roads shut and Madrid Airport forced to Suspend Operations
Madrid Paralysed’ by Heavy Snow Storms as Roads shut and Madrid Airport forced to Suspend Operations.
The very heavy snow fall that was forecast by AEMET, the Spanish meteorological service, has tonight struck Spain’s capital Madrid.
Storm Filomena has kept all of Spain, except Melilla, on alert for intense cold, wind, rain and snow. The storm is affecting some 406 roads throughout Spain, 42 of them on the main network, according to an update by the General Directorate of Traffic. In addition, the secondary road network, 41, is on the black level, that means it is impassable and more than 200 roads are on the red level, with heavy vehicles now obligated to wear snow chains.
So far, up to 7:00 pm, there have been three flight diversions, one in Malaga, another in Córdoba and another in Tenerife North, and nine cancellations at Ceuta heliport.
In the capital, the M-30 ring road between the north junction and the Manoteras junction and the M-40 is cut into a small section. In this second route, snow chains are mandatory in the 60 kilometres of its journey.
The Community emergency service recommends not using private vehicles and reminds everyone of the obligation to use chains on their cars after ten at night. Also on the main network, the passage of traffic is completely interrupted in three kilometres in both directions of the CM-40 and another of the CM-42 as it passes through Toledo.
Courtesy of euroweeklynews.com
Record heavy snowfall in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan in Jan. 2020 equals record in 1964 #RecordSnow #blizzard #NurSultan #Kazakhstan
Source: @ sardarov.nurtas
Heavy snowfall and blizzard in the city of Nur-Sultan this January equaled the weather record in 1964, chief of the department of short-term forecasts of the Kazgidromet Alua Sakhanova said.
Courtesy of akipress.com