Ice Storms Lashing Parts Of Western Europe

Freezing ice storms have been lashing parts of western Europe, causing power outages, falling trees, and upsetting rail services.

Power outages are affecting over 237,000 homes in France as the storm swept through Normandy and North Paris.

Winds hit speeds of 91.5 miles per hour on the coast in Dieppe.

Later, the storm “Ebon” hit South Germany hardest in Rhineland-Palatinate and Northern Bavaria, causing widespread traffic jams and power outages. Emergency teams worked throughout the night in France and Germany.

In south-eastern France, a woman died when a tree fell, crushing her while getting her children ready for school.

Schools and universities have canceled classes in parts of France. North of Paris in Soissons, the storm damaged the organ and destroyed a rose window in the historic cathedral.

They are warning drivers of the treacherous conditions on some German roads due to snow and black ice. So far in Bavaria, three motorists have died in crashes.

Meanwhile, they are working to reinforce the flood defenses on Belgium’s coast. The cold snap throughout Europe has taken over 65 lives. Poland and most of south-eastern Europe – including Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, and western Turkey – are in the middle of heavy snow and freezing temperatures.

Thousands of travelers in the Balkans don’t have proper protection against the icy conditions, as many are still living in tents with little heat. Several migrants have died from cold and exhaustion in Bulgaria.

A previous report shows that at least 1,000 people were sheltering in unheated buildings on the island of Samos. The deaths pushed Greece to move much more quickly to transfer migrants to better facilities on the mainland.

Lufthansa was forced to cancel 125 flights at the Frankfurt/Main airport due to the wind and snow. Deutsche Bahn, a German rail operator, also set a 124 mph speed limit on high-speed ICE trains, causing some travel delays.