World weather news

World weather news, March 2018

Fresh heavy snowfalls lashing Europe have caused transport delays, with the deep freeze expected to continue. The blizzard forced the cancellation of all flights at Dublin airport on Thursday and the temporary closure of Geneva airport in Switzerland. Large parts of the Continent continue to shiver in the grip of a Siberian weather system that has brought the coldest temperatures for several years. The cold snap has been given various nicknames in different countries. In Britain it is "the Beast from the East" - with Storm Emma close behind - while the Dutch are calling it the "Siberian bear" and Swedes the "snow cannon". The airport in the Swiss city of Geneva was forced to shut down on Thursday morning but was later reopened after the runway was cleared using snow ploughs. Icy blizzards across Europe have also seen trains cancelled and roads come to a standstill. About 2,000 drivers were stranded on a motorway near the French city of Montpellier, with some complaining of being stuck for as long 24 as hours.

World weather news, February 2018

At least five people have been killed as a strong storm system caused flooding, hail and high winds in central and southern US states over the weekend. Three people died in Kentucky as tornadoes ripped through the state. Emergencies were declared in several states as heavy rainfall continued to cause widespread flooding on Sunday. The governor of Indiana issued disaster declarations for 11 counties due to flooding. Tornadoes were also recorded in Tennessee, with sustained winds recorded of up to 125mph (200km/h). No deaths were reported there, but a teenage girl was injured by falling debris at a basketball game on Saturday night after a reported lightning strike. The Ohio River was measured at 18 m deep - its highest level for 21 years.
Homeless people in parts of Brussels will be detained overnight if they refuse shelter to protect them from sub-zero temperatures this week. The mayor of Etterbeek, a Brussels neighbourhood that is home to many European Union offices, said he had asked police to take all homeless people to shelters even if they were unwilling. The mayor of Brussels City, one of 19 councils that make up the greater Brussels region, said he had given similar orders to police and asked them to prioritise children sleeping outside. Officials in Lithuania say this winter's record low temperatures claimed the lives of at least three people over the weekend in Vilnius. Seven people have received treatment for substantial frostbite to their hands and feet in the past few days. The impact of the cold weather has been felt across the continent, although not as severely as in the Baltic states. Schools have been disrupted across Italy and Romans woke to the rare sight of the capital city covered in snow on Monday. It was the heaviest snowfall in Rome in six years and the largest for the end of February in decades. The city, which is not well equipped to deal with snow emergencies, asked other areas to send in snowploughs to help clear roads. Only one runway was operating at Rome's main airport, Fiumicino. Its second airport, Ciampino, was closed overnight allowing workers to clear a runway so it could reopen on Monday morning. On Sunday night, temperatures in Moscow dropped to nearly -20C, the coldest night of the Russian winter so far. Roman Vilfand, the chief of the Russian meteorological office, said Muscovites should brace themselves for frosty weather in early March and could only "count on the warmth of the soul", not higher temperatures outside. In Germany, meteorologists reported a record cold for this winter of -27C on Zugspitze, the country's highest peak. In the UK, the bookmaker Coral slashed the odds on March being recorded as the country's coldest ever month. In Romania, where temperatures plunged to -8C on Monday, the mayor of Bucharest, Gabriela Firea, announced schools would be closed in the capital for at least two days. Schools were also closed elsewhere in Romania. In Croatia, about 1,000 soldiers joined efforts to clear the snow in the worst-affected areas where more than 1.5 metres of snowfall has been reported. Schools have been closed in the north-west and heavy vehicles have been banned from all roads leading toward the coast.

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Last updated 1 March 2018.

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