Another round of snowfall hits Turkey

Another round of snowfall hits Turkey

Another round of snowfall hits Turkey

DHA Photo

Turkey has been hit by a fresh wave of wintery weather that has caused accidents, disrupted transportation, and closed schools in a number of cities.

Snowfall began in Istanbul late on Feb. 9, and increased its impact on Feb. 10, especially on the city’s Asian side. The Istanbul Municipality’s salt trucks have been stationed at the main arterial roads, but the Istanbul Governor’s Office has announced that schools would not be closed on neither Feb. 10 nor Feb. 11.

A number of Turkish Airlines (THY) flights from Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport were canceled on Feb. 10 due to the weather conditions, officials said, adding that all measures have been taken at the airport and chemical solutions were used against ice accretion.

The Istanbul Fast Ferries Company (IDO) and Bursa’s BUDO have also announced that they have canceled trips both to and from Istanbul.

Elsewhere, various provinces in Anatolia were also hit by heavy snow moving from west to east, with hundreds of roads leading to remote villages blocked across Turkey. Schools were closed on Feb. 10 in the eastern provinces of Bitlis, Ağrı, Uşak, Bingöl, Muş, Ardahan and Erzurum, which experience hot summers but cold and snowy winters.

The State Meteorological Service has announced that the snowfall is expected to start decreasing on Feb. 12, though the cold weather will continue until the end of the week.

The road between the Aegean provinces of İzmir and Manisa was closed for a couple of hours on Feb. 10 after trucks overturned due to ice, which also affected vehicles traveling between İzmir and Istanbul.

A passenger bus spanning the country from Ağrı to Bodrum rolled over due to icy road conditions in Afyon province, reportedly injuring 40 people. Another bus, travelling from Manisa to Istanbul, crashed in Balıkesir after its driver lost control of the vehicle due to strong winds. Four of the 27 passengers were heavily injured and were taken to the nearby Balıkesir State Hospital.

Accidents also occurred on the main roads around Bolu Mountain in the northwest due to the accumulated snow on the ground.

Transportation was shut down on roads connecting the eastern provinces of Ağrı and Iğdır and traffic was sluggish on the Erzurum-Ağrı road due to heavy snow. Roads leading to 188 villages in Sivas, 145 villages in Erzincan and 65 villages in Tunceli, as well as 29 countryside districts in Manisa, became inaccessible, according to the Roads and Transportation Directorate.

Ferry rides were disrupted due to the storm on the Çanakkale Strait as the Gelibolu-Lapseki and Gelibolu-Çardak lines, as well as ferries to Gökçeada and Bozcaada islands, were canceled on Feb. 10. The Çanakkale-Eceabat and Çanakkale-Kilitbahir lines remained open.