Vienna - Record snowfall in parts of southern Austria disrupted traffic and rail services Friday and prompted authorities to declare the highest-level avalanche alert.

In the Gailtal valley, in the southern province of Carinthia, about 102 centimetres of snow fell in just 48 hours, marking an 80-year record, according to the Austrian national weather centre ZAMG.

The Lesachtal valley meanwhile saw between 160 and 200 centimetres of fresh snow, according to unofficial data.

The severe winter weather prompted road closures around Carinthia and neighbouring eastern Tyrol, including access to a couple of ski resorts.

Meanwhile, Austrian Rail announced that traffic between Villach and the northern Italian town of Udine had been suspended, while elsewhere, local rail services could remain closed until Sunday.

Austrian Rail added it had called on the military to help keep other stretches open.

Earlier, it was reported that around 3,000 homes were without electricity after overhead lines collapsed following two days of continuous snowfall.

In eastern Tyrol, fire fighters were working at clearing roofs after a 35-metre-wide mass of snow slid off a building, crushing six cars, and as roofs threatened to collapse under the weight. Nobody was injured.

Authorities in the Lesachtal valley also advised residents to clear their roofs, while an avalanche in the valley caused some material damage, but nobody was hurt.

Schools remained closed for the second day in the Carinthian towns of Spittal and Hermagor.