A Stormy and Icy Tuesday in Bulgaria: Code Orange Warnings Across East

Written by on January 10, 2017 in Bulgaria, Latest - No comments

The eastern part of Bulgaria was under a Code Orange warning for dangerous weather, yet again, on Tuesday. Specifically, this was about strong winds, snowfall and extremely low temperatures in part of that region. The Code Orange warning was in place for Ruse, Varna, Burgas, Dobrich, Haskovo, Kurdzhali, Razgrad, Shoumen, Silistra, Sliven, Turgovishte and Yambol.

The rest of Bulgaria got a Code Yellow warning, due to snowfall and icy conditions, without the strong winds forecast in the east.

Temperatures throughout Bulgaria were expected to vary between -20 degrees Centigrade in Silistra on Tuesday morning, and +3 degrees, during the day, in Burgas. It is the first time in a week that any location in Bulgaria will be above the freezing point.

In Sliven, Yambol, Stara Zagora and Haskovo, temperatures are supposed to increase a little bit. Those regions will supposedly have lows at around -10 degrees. Apart from Silistra, Vidin and Ruse will be the coldest places in Bulgaria today, with lows at -19 degrees. In large parts of western and central Bulgaria, -15 degrees were expected in the morning and -12 to -4 degrees during the day.

On Monday, schools were still closed in the entire country, after the Education Ministry had decided to extend the Christmas vacation twice, due to the weather and the spreading flu. Only in a hand full of regions, classes were to commence today. In most of the country, including Sofia, no public schools will be open on Tuesday. At this stage, it is unclear whether tomorrow will be a school-free day as well, in Sofia and elsewhere. A decision by the ministry will be taken today.

On Monday, the inhabitants of Sofia did not feel quite as cold as before, since the wind was receding. At the same time, it wasn’t exactly warm. The most asked question in the capital must have been “Do you have a jumper cable?”, as hundreds of car engines failed to ignite. The most given answer might have been “Sorry, but I don’t.” And the most stupid follow-up question was probably “What do you need it for?”

The pigeons picking bread crumbs at the former mineral bath in Sofia were the only creatures which did not seem to mind the cold at all. Six students from Kongo, whose taxi driver was supposed to leave them at a hostel at “Ul. Sv. Sveti Kiril i Metodi”, were just dropped off on Boulevard Maria Luiza, since the ignorant driver might have been too lazy to look for that place. The African visitors were not happy about the cold at all, but glad they met people who took them to their destination, which was still several hundred meters away.

At a Lidl supermarket in the center, customers carried brownish, dirty snow slush into the store, on their shoes, but it was the same picture elsewhere too. Things got messy all over the place. But that was the least of the problems.

The Danube was partially frozen, train services in parts of the country were delayed or cancelled. The weather-related delays applied to flights as well. In some villages, there was still no electricity and road conditions in eastern and northern Bulgaria were still bad.

At this stage it looks like the extreme cold might end this coming weekend. That is what forecasts were suggesting today.

By Imanuel Marcus

In cooperation with The Sofia Globe.

Photo by I. Marcus

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