January 2020 was the warmest month of winter of the past years in Romania, also the first red code alert in 2020 has been issued and temperatures are expected to drop sharply at the weekend.
After spring temperatures of more than 20 degrees C in the south of Romania and a month of January with temperatures much above the normal one for this period of the year, with historic highs reported in several days, winter has finally come. On Wednesday night Romania was affected by snowstorms and snowfalls, meteorologists issuing bad weather alerts for the entire country. 9 counties were under a code red alert for snowfalls and storms, the first and most serious of 2020.
Hydrologists have also issued or extended alerts for high floods on several rivers. On Thursday morning several roads were closed as well as the highway linking the capital Bucharest to the Black Sea Coast, where the gusts of wind blew away the panels of the roadside parapets that landed on the highway. Maneuvers in all seaports have been suspended due to the snowstorm. Also classes have been suspended in several schools from counties in southern and eastern Romania, where the strong winds exceeded 100 km per hour, blocking the roads.
The west of the country was also affected by snowfalls. A truck heading for Budapest was overturned by the strong winds in Arad county and in Timis county several uprooted trees fell on a truck. The high winds also blew off house roofs in the city of Timisoara. Bucharest was also faced with strong winds, many trees falling down on cars and roads, which required the intervention of firefighters.
Trams were blocked due to the thick layer of snow. Also ten of trains running in the south and southeast of the country were cancelled on Thursday morning due to unfavorable weather conditions. Air traffic unfolded according to winter conditions on the airports located in the areas affected by snowstorms. Several flights have been delayed. Also power outages have occurred in hundreds of localities across Romania.
Meteorologists have announced that the lowest temperature of this year, minus 32 degrees C, was reported on Wednesday night in the northern region of Maramures. Also weather forecasts announce freezing weather after the snowfalls and continued high winds and snowstorms in the mountains. (translation by L. Simion)