Only twice before since records began has there been snow in October in all the nine provinces of Austria, on the 31 October 1941 as well as in the night of 23 and 24 October 2003.

Austrian weather expert Alexander Orlik from the central weather institute ZAMG said: "It is true the snow is very early this year and that is an indication that it will be a long hard winter, but not proof."

The early snow caught many drivers unaware who had not yet changed over to winter tyres - causing problems on the roads. The legal deadline to have winter tyres is 1 November in Austria.

In Carinthia parts of the region were left without electricity as the snow fell as a result of heavy snow meaning trees toppled onto the lines .