NEWS

Seven regions shut down in wake of snowstorm

Seven regions shut down in wake of snowstorm

Authorities have warned the public to limit their movements on Tuesday to essential reasons only, as a holiday has been declared in seven regions in the wake of heavy snowfall that began on Monday and threw the Greek capital and other parts of the country into chaos.

According to the emergency measures announced on Monday night by Civil Protection Minister Christos Stylianides, public services have been suspended, with the exception of municipal and regional government, armed forces and security forces, public health and other services whose operation is necessary for the management of the weather emergency.

Nurseries, kindergartens and schools are also closed, without the option of online classes because the administrative staff necessary to run them is absent.

Private businesses have also been ordered to shut down, except for supermarkets and food stores (which will operate from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), gas stations, pharmacies and other health-related businesses, as well as businesses whose operation helps address the effects of bad weather.

The regions affected are Attica, Evia, Viotia, Crete and the islands of the Cyclades, Dodecanese and Sporades.

The snowfall in Attica started on Monday morning and is expected to continue in many parts of the capital and its environs for part of Tuesday, according to the National Meteorological Service. 

“Clouds formed at a great altitude and consequently a lot of snow fell in a short period of time. At the same time, the fact that that had been preceded by very low temperatures meant the snow did not melt when it fell to the ground, so that very rapid snow cover accumulated,” said Kostas Lagouvardos, research director of the National Observatory and scientific director of meteo.gr. 

Heavy snowfall is also expected to continue in the islands of the Sporades, Evia, the eastern parts of Thessaly (mainly Magnesia), central Greece and the Peloponnese, the Cyclades, Crete and the islands of the eastern Aegean. Its intensity will weaken after noon on Tuesday.

Meteorologists expect the weather to start easing from noon on Tuesaday in most parts, but not on the islands and Crete, where snow and heavy rain will continue.

However, the temperatures are forecast to remain low on Tuesday and Wednesday, with frost developing as the snow begins to melt.

In Attica, the National Meteorological Service (EMY) forecast temperatures on Tuesday from 0-3 Celsius.