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Turkey embattled with unprecedented snowfall

Turkey embattled with unprecedented snowfall

From Istanbul to Turkey’s eastern provinces, harsh winter conditions gripped the country on Wednesday. Snowfall, blizzards and strong winds led to traffic accidents and closure of roads while toppling trees and tearing apart roofs of buildings.

The Turkish State Meteorogical Service (TSMS) issued “yellow” and “orange” alerts, which require utmost caution, over bad weather in 69 cities. Authorities announced that in-person education, which was resumed on Monday for rural schools after months of closure due to coronavirus pandemic, was switched back online in 24 provinces due to snowfall.

Weather forecasts show mostly cloudy weather for some regions while most places, from the Marmara region to southeastern Anatolia, will be affected by precipitation at least until Thursday.

Densely populated Istanbul was among the cities hit hardest by the snowfall, which started last Saturday and sporadically continued into Wednesday. Traffic jams were worst on Wednesday on a stretch of the TransEuropean Motorway (TEM) straddling through the city. Motorists were stranded for hours in their vehicles while crews worked to clear the road with snowplows.