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6 February, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Moscow authorities struggle to clear record snowfall

AFP
Moscow authorities struggle to clear record snowfall
A bulldozer shovels snow off Red Square as snow falls in Moscow on Sunday. AFP photo

MOSCOW: Moscow authorities battled to clear streets and told children they could skip school, and scores of flights were delayed as the city was blanketed by its heaviest snowfall in 100 years, reports AFP.

The city hall said that 44 centimetres (17 inches) of snow had fallen between Saturday and Monday morning, or 20 percent more than the average for the whole month.

Up to 20 centimetres more was expected to fall on Monday with temperatures falling to minus 12 degrees centigrade (10 degrees Fahrenheit), officials warned.

“This is the first time in 100 years there’s been such a quantity of snow,” said deputy mayor Pyotr Biryukov, quoted by Interfax news agency. Russia’s RIA Novosti news agency dubbed the conditions a “snowy apocalypse.”

“In the first five days of February the monthly average (snowfall) was reached,” Nadezhda Tochenova, the deputy head of Russia’s Hydrometcentre weather research centre told AFP. “That’s an anomaly of course.”

A depth of snow of 55 centimetres was measured at one city weather station, Tochenova said, while denying reports that the snowfall was an all-time record. Early Monday morning, the city announced that children need not come to school—although they would stay open. “Due to the bad weather, we have announced that attending lessons in Moscow schools is optional,” city hall’s website said.

Usually schools in Russia close only when temperatures fall extremely low.

The emergency services also urged drivers to use public transport unless there was “extreme need” due to the risk of snowdrifts and black ice.

Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin said on Sunday that the sheer weight of snow had toppled 2,000 trees, and the city authorities said more than 100 of those fell on cars.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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