Power cuts and warnings to motorists as heavy snowfall hits southern Bulgaria

Bulgaria’s Road Infrastructure Agency on March 7 urged motorists not to travel to the regions of Smolyan, Kurdzhali and Pernik because of overnight snowstorms, with heavy snowfall expected to continue in southern and western Bulgaria until the middle of the coming week.

If travel was essential, motorists should use only the primary road network, the agency said.

The heavy snowfall disrupted power supply to dozens of villages in the Smolyan region. Emergency teams from EVN Bulgaria, the electricity distributor in the southern part of the country, were working to repair the power supply network.

In Roudozem municipality, 23km from regional centre Smolyan, a state of emergency was declared. Local media said that every village in the municipality of Roudozem, which borders on Smolyan, Madan and Zlatograd municipalities and on the south with Greece, had no electricity. Snowfall in the town of Roudozem was 40cm, and more than 60cm in villages at higher altitudes in the municipality.

Earlier, on March 6, a “code red” dangerous weather warning was issued for Smolyan, Kurdzhali and Haskovo because of strong wind, blizzards and snow drifts.

Soon after the declaration of the state of emergency in Roudozem, an emergency was declared in the entire Smolyan region.

Bulgarian Academy of Science weather forecasters said that snow was expected every day up to and including March 11, to be followed the next two days by rain. National average daily maximum temperatures would range from zero to eight degrees Celsius, forecasters said.

In capital city Sofia, heavy snow fell on March 7, and was expected to continue on March 8.

(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)



The Sofia Globe staff

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