Schools closed and transport suspended as snow hits northern France

Large parts of northern France, including Paris, woke up to a covering of snow on Wednesday, with schools closed and roads blocked.

Schools closed and transport suspended as snow hits northern France
Photo: AFP

Snow fell overnight across northern France, from the Belgian border to Brittany, via the greater Paris Île-de-France region, which saw between 1cm and 4cm of snow.


Authorities in the départements of Yvelines, Essonne and Val d'Oise suspended all classes and moved to distance learning, although schools will provide a minimum service for pupils who cannot stay home.

School transport has been suspended in the greater Paris départements of Yvelines, Essonne, Val d'Oise and Seine-et-Marne.

In Paris, police advised people to avoid taking the roads as much as possible and the N118 is closed to all traffic, while vehicles heavier than 7.5t are banned from major routes across the Île-de-France region.

Bus and train transport in the region is disrupted, but Metro and tram services were reported as running normally.


Roads are also closed in Brittany, which has seen falls of 10cm in some areas.


Around 200 lorries are blocked on the N12 between Brest and Rennes. Another 50 lorries are blocked on the N164 near Carhaix and drivers are advised to travel only if their journey is vital.

In total 36 départements are on orange alert for snow, ice and very cold temperatures, they are; Finistère, Morbihan, Côtes-d'Armor, Ille-et-Vilaine, Mayenne, Sarthe, Loir-et-Cher, Loiret, Yonne, Côte-d'Or, Doubs, Territoire de Belfort, Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin, Vosges, Haute-Soâne, Aube, Seine-et-Marne, Orne, Calvados, Manche, Essonne, Yvelines, Paris, Val-d'Oise, Eure, Haut-Marne, Ain, Seine-Saint-Denis, Val-de-Marne, Hauts-de-Seine, Somme, Pas-de-Calais, Nord and Aisne. The alert is in place until 6am on Thursday.

Temperatures are forecast to remain very cold across northern France until the weekend.


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Denmark records deepest snow level for 13 years

Blizzards in Denmark this week have resulted in the greatest depth of snow measured in the country for 13 years.

Denmark records deepest snow level for 13 years

A half-metre of snow, measured at Hald near East Jutland town Randers, is the deepest to have occurred in Denmark since January 2011, national meteorological agency DMI said.

The measurement was taken by the weather agency at 8am on Thursday.

Around 20-30 centimetres of snow was on the ground across most of northern and eastern Jutland by Thursday, as blizzards peaked resulting in significant disruptions to traffic and transport.

A much greater volume of snow fell in 2011, however, when over 100 centimetres fell on Baltic Sea island Bornholm during a post-Christmas blizzard, which saw as much as 135 centimetres on Bornholm at the end of December 2010.

READ ALSO: Denmark’s January storms could be fourth extreme weather event in three months

With snowfall at its heaviest for over a decade, Wednesday saw a new rainfall record. The 59 millimetres which fell at Svendborg on the island of Funen was the most for a January day in Denmark since 1886. Some 9 weather stations across Funen and Bornholm measured over 50cm of rain.

DMI said that the severe weather now looks to have peaked.

“We do not expect any more weather records to be set in the next 24 hours. But we are looking at some very cold upcoming days,” DMI meteorologist and press spokesperson Herdis Damberg told news wire Ritzau.