Deaths by freezing as well as floods, and heavy snowfalls, painted a bleak weather picture in northern Europe on New Year's Day.
Deaths by freezing as well as floods, and heavy snowfalls, painted a bleak weather picture in northern Europe on New Year's Day. In Moscow, the freeze was described as ferocious, while in Paris, freezing fog added to the problems caused by snow. Parts of Finland had their coldest day for a century, Iceland reported its heaviest snowfall for twenty-six years, and public transport ground to a halt in parts of Britain and the continent. Three BBC reporters give this account of the widespread damage and disruption in the U.K.
SYNOPSIS: In isolated communities in West Germany, appeals were made to those with fuel to give refuge to neighbours without heating, and if necessary to house them with livestock to take advantage of the heat given off by animals. All means of communication, including rail services, were hampered or completely halted. In West Berlin, road and rail links to West Germany were cut.
In the worst-hit areas, cars were banned from the roads, while people already stranded were rescued. In one state, the Red Cross helped about a thousand people from cars and trains. While weathermen said conditions would get worse, the northern area suffered temperatures of minus twenty-five degrees Centigrade (minus thirteen Fahrenheit). Thousands of soldiers with army vehicles ranging from Leopard main battle tanks to personnel carriers, moved in to aid motorists and restore services.