Snowfall reaches Barcelona
Authorities restrict lorry traffic in the whole country and foresee “very adverse” episode
Heavy snow is expected to fall in the whole of Catalonia this Tuesday from 6pm, including the coast. As the country braces for this “exceptional, large episode” of snow –according to the authorities– some flakes could already be spotted at around 1pm local time in Barcelona, at 0 meters above sea level. The Catalan capital is not the only atypical place where snow was falling in the afternoon.
Catalan Traffic Service takes unprecedented measures
With temperatures of no higher than 3ºC in the country, the weather conditions will worsen in the evening. For the first time ever, the Catalan Traffic Service announced that the circulation of lorries weighing more than 7 tons will be restricted on the entire traffic network from 4pm, while the Civil Protection service warned that this snow episode will be “very adverse.” The same authority foresees “a lot” of problems in main roads accessing Barcelona. According to the director general of the Civil Protection service, Joan Delort, the consequences of the snowfall are to be “very severe.” As a preemptive measure, there will be no school transport on Wednesday and a large number of schools will be closed.
That is why in a press conference at 1pm he asked citizens to contribute to make this unique situation smoother, although atypical circumstances are guaranteed as every day 500,000 vehicles come and go from the Catalan capital. “Imagine that everyone has to put on snow chains, one car is blocking the road, the other one slips… this ends up generating a number of problems,” said Delort. He also warned that there are “no magic solutions” and snow plows cannot work if there are cars blocking the road.
Earlier on Tuesday the snow had already fallen in several counties in Catalonia. This disrupted traffic on several roads, with some school transport routes being suspended. The University of Vic, in the Osona county, cancelled its lectures on Tuesday, while 21 schools closed leaving 3,390 children without lessons.
Situation of 'high' and 'very high danger' according to weather service
The Catalan public weather service has classified the situation as a ‘moderate’ to ‘high’ risk of danger due to the snow expected on Tuesday evening in 37 of the 42 counties in Catalonia. The warning has been extended to all the counties for the early hours and morning of Wednesday, with the situation in seven counties classified as ‘very high danger.’ Most regions, including the entire Barcelona area, are classified as ‘high’ danger, according to the weather service. For Wednesday afternoon and evening, temperatures are expected to rise quickly, with the snow alert only remaining in the central and northern parts of the country.