Athens, Feb 15 (efe-epa).- Greece on Monday found itself in the grips of a cold-weather front that has brought hurricane-force winds, freezing temperatures and the heaviest snowfall in recent decades.
The country’s Civil Protection department said parts of central and northern Greece registered the heaviest snowfall in 20 years and that the adverse weather had cut off access to several main roads in the affected regions. Temperatures dropped to -10C (14F) in places.
There were unusual scenes in Athens as residents of the capital awoke to a blanket of snow while in Sporades islands, located in the Aegean Sea, authorities reported wind gusts of up to 120km/h. The islands have been without power since Sunday.
The Greek government has ordered snow plows to clear access points to medical centers as the adverse weather conditions coincided with the initial rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca. Firefighters will be on hand to bring people to vaccination points if necessary.
The cold front has also brought snow to the nearby Turkish city of Istanbul, where temperatures are set to drop close to freezing overnight. EFE-EPA