Snow, strong winds cause problems across Greece

Greeks have been warned to make only absolutely necessary journeys on Tuesday as gale force winds and snow have made conditions difficult in many parts of the country.

The weather has led to power cuts on a number of islands, parts of the mainland an in some neighborhoods of Athens. The lack of electricity as well as the dangerous conditions have prompted authorities to shut down dozens of schools.

A number of roads in the capital, including those that run through the mountains of Pendeli and Parnitha have been closed to traffic. Some roads in the Peloponnese, central Greece and the north of the country have also been closed.

The winds, which reach up to 10 Beaufort in some parts, mean that there will be little ferry travel in Greece. The ports of Piraeus, Lavrio and Rafina are closed.

Trolley bus drivers in Athens have called off their planned work stoppages for Tuesday.

The City of Athens said that it would be offering blankets and hot drinks to homeless people via its Reception and Solidarity Center.

Meanwhile, the Nea Odos consortium that manages the section of national road at Malakasa, north of Athens, where thousands of motorists were stuck on Monday night even though the snowfall was quite light has defended itself against accusations from Transport Minister Dimitris Reppas that it did not do its job properly.

Nea Odos spokesperson Fotini Lambrou told Skai TV that 50 gritting machines spread some 50 tons of salt on the road and that the tailbacks were caused because drivers were reducing their speed or stopping to fit snow chains.

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