ATHENS – The cold front "Leandros" hit Greece with snow from Thessaloniki to Attica and power outages reported in the eastern part of Thessaloniki on Saturday, while areas as far south as Crete are expecting an onslaught of strong winds and heavy rain that will last through Tuesday.
In higher elevations of Attica, central Greece, and the Peloponnese several roads call for snow chains on vehicles, while in Attica police has preventatively banned cars from sections of Tatoiou Street, on the way to Katsimidi, and heavy trucks from sections of the Athens-Lamia highway.
On Mt. Hymettus, Anapafseos Street in Papagou leading to the mountain and the ring road of Alimos-Katehaki near Kessariani have also been shut to traffic. In Penteli-Nea Makris ring road, traffic is banned from the 414 Military Hospital and further up. Restrictions are also in place on sections of Dionyssou, Thisseos and Fylis Avenues.
Similar traffic restrictions and other measures were reviewed ahead of the adverse weather in a wide-ranging meeting held on Friday under Citizen Protection Minister Michalis Chrysohoidis at the Civil Protection headquarters.
In northern Greece, Macedonia received heavy snowfall, with high-elevation towns getting nearly half a meter of snow. Thin snowfall was seen in Ioannina, while snow chains are required for sections of Egnatia Odos, which traverses Macedonia, and on regional roads, including the road from Grevena to the Vassilitsa Ski Center.
Trikala and Karditsa have also experienced heavy snowfall but the roads are being cleared.
In Thessaloniki, snow did not create traffic problems although it began in the early morning hours and continued, while machines have managed to clear roads around the city. In Chalkidiki peninsula, snow chains are required on the old Thessaloniki-Ierissos national road and elsewhere, as is true of the road network around Pella, Edessa and Kilkis.
Heavy snowfall started in the early morning hours in central Greece, from Evritania prefecture to northern Evia and Fokida. Larissa and Lamia also saw snow. In some villages of Evritania snow is over 10cm deep, while sections of the roads leading to and from Karpenissi and Antirrio will require snow chains.
Lamia, Nafpaktos and Agrinio mainly have problems in the rural road network.
In the Peloponnese, snow chains necessary on sections of the Tripoli-Sparta national road and on regional roads. The same is true of Corinthia
Crete is expecting heavy rain and thunderstorms as of Saturday night, snow on mountain areas and almost gale-force winds (5 to 7 on the Beaufort scale). Although the phenomena will abate, they will pick up again on Monday with heavy rain and thunderstorms locally and snow on higher elevations, through Tuesday.