Heavy snowfalls and strong winds brought a new round of road closures and cuts to power and water supplies in parts of Bulgaria on January 11.
The north-eastern part of Bulgaria was again hard-hit, with 45cm of snow in Dobrich and all roads closed to traffic, it was reported on the late morning of Wednesday.
Villages in the Dobrich and General Toshevo municipalities in the Dobrudzha region were left without electricity and water. A broken power line caused power cuts in 21 villages in the General Toshevo municipality. Six villages in Dobrich municipality had no water supply.
In the Bourgas region, there were 17 calls to universal emergency number 112 overnight. Firefighting teams, traffic and municipal teams evacuated more than 54 people who had been stuck in snowdrifts.
Energy distributor EVN said that 42 settlements in the region had partial or complete power cuts. Most of the incidents were in the municipalities of Sozopol, Primorsko, Kameno, Sredets, Pomorie and Bourgas.
Reports on January 11 said that in spite of repeated appeals from Bulgaria’s authorities, many people had undertaken road journeys yesterday, leading to traffic problems and requests for evacuation.
Early on the morning of January 11, a military tracked vehicle was used to transport a woman in labour from the snow-laden village of Bresovo to Bourgas Hospital.
The Bourgas – Malko Turnovo, Bourgas – Tsarevo, and Bourgas – Sredets – Elhovo roads were open, but with restrictions on the movement of heavy lorries of more than 12 tons.
In the Dolni Chiflik municipality, five villages had no electricity and water, municipal mayor Krassimira Anastasova told Bulgarian National Radio.
Bulgaria awoke on January 11 to temperatures ranging from minus 18 degrees Celsius to one degree.
There were snowfalls in Varna, Veliko Turnovo, Vidin, Vratsa, Dobrich, Lovech, Montana, Pernik, Razgrad, Rousse, Silistra, Turgovishte, Shoumen, and in the regions of Karlovo and Kurnare (Plovdiv region), Kotel and Tvarditsa (Sliven region), Vakarel, Vitniya-Botevgrad, Buchin Pass and the Samokov road (Sofia region), Shipka Pass, the Pass of the Republic, and in Radnevo and Gulubovo (Stara Zagora region).
There were restrictions on the movement of all vehicles in the Bourgas region, while the Trakiya Motorway was closed to all vehicles between Zimnitsa and Bourgas, because of strong winds and low temperatures.
On Hemus Motorway, vehicles of more than 12 tons were barred from driving in the Yablanitsa direction in the Sofia region because of snow.
The Maritsa, Black Sea and Lyulin motorways were open to all vehicles.