Europe Snowstorms: Over 100 People Dead & Flight Cancellations
Update made on 23/12/09 at 9:30am:
The snowstorms in Europe have caused the death toll to rise since Monday with over 100 people dead due to the cold weather conditions. The death toll in Poland is now up to 42 people. The Ukraine, Czech Republic, and Germany have been hit significantly in the last few days with death tolls rising under cold temperatures as low as -33C:
n Ukraine 27 people have frozen to death since the thermometer dropped last week. Authorities in Romania said 11 people had succumbed to the chill, and in the Czech Republic the toll was 12. In Germany, where temperatures have fallen to -33C in certain parts, at least seven people are known to have lost their lives in the freezing weather.
Transportation continues to be an issue although the Eurostar rail line has resumed services between France, Belgium, and England. There were recurring issues with train cancellations and delays, however, with limited services returning to operation. EasyJet and RyanAir have had major flight cancellations leaving people stranded in airports struggling to get home in the few remaining days before Christmas. Both Moscow and Milan are just two of the many cities struggling with traffic gridlock due to the snowstorms.
Original Story from 21/12/09:
A cold front continues to sweep across Europe with numerous snowstorms and subzero temperatures being reported in Belgium, Austria, France, Italy, and the UK among other places. Many travelers have been affected by the severe weather conditions that have lead some major airports to close and prevented many from getting to their destinations during the last weekend before Christmas.
As well as road closures and train difficulties, primarily with the Eurostar rail line, major airports across Europe are having to make numerous flight cancellations and close some of their main runways. The Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports in France have already cancelled up to 40% of their flights, while the UK's Manchester airport had to recently close its main runway for snow clearance purposes. The Brussels, Charleroi and Liege airports in Belgium have all been temporarily closed leaving passengers without the 3 largest airports in Belgium.
In terms of actual casualties due to the extreme cold weather, Poland seems to have been hit the worst. So far, there have been up to 42 deaths in the last 3 days in relation to the cold spell.
So far the cold snap has been deadliest in Poland, where 15 people froze to death between Saturday and Sunday as temperatures fell as low as minus 20 Celsius (minus four degrees Fahrenheit) overnight in some places.
Police appealed Sunday to Poles to alert police if they come across homeless or drunk people lying outdoors, attempting to lower the number of people who die each winter from the bitter cold.
There are now up to 80 people dead across Europe in relation to the cold front that has recently taken over. Other recent deaths in connection to the weather were in the Austrian province of Styria, where 2 people froze to death in -20 temperatures whilst trying to get home one evening. The weather has been causing casualties as well as transportation chaos as numerous accidents have recently occurred:
Another 13 people died in car accidents in Austria, Finland and Germany, where temperatures fell to -33C (-27F).
When a train recently hit a buffer in the Croatian city of Zagreb, 50 individuals were injured while a derailed passenger train in Paris left 36 people with injuries. These are just a few examples of the numerous incidents that are taking place across Europe as people battle with the sudden change in weather conditions.