Extreme Temperatures

Snowflake Cold

Cold snap in North Korea worse than usual; minus 16 degrees Celsius recorded

An aerial view of the frozen Taedong River in Pyongyang on Wednesday
© Associated Press Television News An aerial view of the frozen Taedong River in Pyongyang on Wednesday
The date known on traditional calendars as the day of the "Big Cold" lived up to its reputation Wednesday in North Korea.

The country has been hit by a severe cold wave sending temperatures plummeting to minus 16 degrees Celsius (3 Fahrenheit) — or about minus 24 (minus 11 F) when the wind chill is calculated.

Wednesday was the coldest day of the year so far, though forecasters said the worst may be yet to come.

Some pedestrians in the capital Pyongyang walked backward to avoid facing into the biting wind, but the cold did not stop intrepid fishermen from squatting on the frozen Taedong River in the center of the city in the hope of catching a local delicacy — a fish called sokari in Korean, golden Mandarin fish in English.

They hack holes through 40 centimeters (16 inches) of ice to send thin lines into the water below.

Pyongyang's indoor ice skating rink has also been teeming with skaters, despite the freezing temperatures inside as well as out.

Snowflake Cold

About 80 settlements in south Ukraine remain without power following heavy snowfall

© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS
Seventy-two settlements in the Kherson Region, five in the Mykolaiv Region and one settlement in the Odessa Region currently remain without electricity

A total of 78 settlements in three regions in Ukraine's south remain without electricity, the press service of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine said on Thursday.

"On Wednesday specialists from utility companies completed works on restoring electricity to settlements that were left without power as a result of complicated weather conditions - gusts of wind, snowfall and icing," the press service said.

Seventy-two settlements in the Kherson Region, five in the Mykolaiv Region and one settlement in the Odessa Region currently remain without electricity. Repair works are underway.

Snowflake Cold

Extreme 'cold wave' weather chills 90 percent of China, as temperatures drop to -30C

Fishing boats frozen by sea ice in China
© RexFishing boats frozen by sea ice at the sea area in Qinhuangdao, a port city in north China's Hebei Province

An extreme 'cold wave' has hit most of north and east China, with low temperatures and frost expected to last for around a week

These amazing pictures show the astonishing effects of an extreme 'cold wave' that has hit 90 percent of China.

Parts of China suffered a bitterly cold chill this week as temperatures dropped to the lowest they've been in 30 years.

These pictures show residents in Harbin, the northernmost provincial capital in China, as they battled the elements in -30C.

One image shows a huge clump of ice frozen in mid air above a man's head as he threw water over himself.

Another man's eyebrows collected freezing icicles on them which had twisted into clumps 'growing' from his brow.

And a woman smiled through the cold as ice collected on her wooly hat and the ends of her hair while she wore a face mask in the bitter chill.

hot water freezing in air in China
© RexA man throws hot water into the air at Songhuajiang river in Harbin

Comment: See also: Very low temperatures and heavy snowfall in Mongolia; mass death of livestock

Snowflake Cold

Very low temperatures and heavy snowfall in Mongolia; mass death of livestock

Yurt in snow storm
Frost-cold-winter Mongolia is experiencing very low temperatures and heavy snowfall since early-November 2015, locally named dzud (or jute, mass deaths of livestock in winter). According to the National Emergency Management Authority, snow has covered 90 percent of the total territory with conditions getting more severe, ReliefWeb reports.

Based on the latest assessment report released from the Mongolian government in early-January 2016, 50 districts in 16 provinces are currently categorized as experiencing dzud, while 120 districts in 20 provinces are on the edge of entering dzud condition.

Some local level governments have already declared dzud in their respective districts as part of the early warning and preparedness measures.

The Information and Research Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and Environment has indicated that based on the weather forecast, continuous snowfall, snowstorms and temperatures are expected to persist on average of below -25 degrees Celsius (-13°F) during daytime and -38 degrees (-36°F) during night in the coming weeks. These will further affect more than 965,000 people, especially vulnerable herders living in the affected districts.

Snowflake Cold

Heavy snowfall wreaks havoc in Odessa, Ukraine

Snow in Odessa
Snow in Odessa
Heavy snowfall is wreaking havoc in Ukraine's port city of Odesa. At least two homeless people have died after a snowstorm hit the southern city. Three others are in the hospital after suffering from hypothermia and frostbite.

Local authorities are now deploying tents that provide heating for the homeless and those caught up in the snowstorms. The freezing weather saw heavy snowfall forcing the international airport to cancel over a dozen flights this week.

Snowflake Cold

Moscow has already received twice the average amount of snow for January

Snowfall in Moscow
© Sergei Porter / VedomostiSnowfall in Moscow
Russia's weather center issued an orange weather warning on Tuesday as heavy snowfall threatened to disrupt traffic in Moscow.

Warning of rising wind speeds as a weather front moved into central Russia from the south, the Hydrometeorological Center of Russia said 12-15 centimeters of snow was expected to fall on Tuesday, the TASS news agency reported.

The new alert follows a week of heavy snowfall in Moscow. Since the start of the month 77 centimeters of snow has fallen in the capital — more than twice the average for January, TASS said.

The storm follows an outlandishly warm start to the Russian winter, with temperatures in the capital dropping below zero only in late December.

More than 18,000 machines and 60,000 people have been deployed in the city to clear snow, according to TASS.

Snowflake Cold

Italy in the grip of ice and snow: Minus 18 degrees Celsius recorded in places

Snow in Italy
© ANSASnow in Italy
Civil protection authorities issued a fresh weather alert for southern regions on Monday as much of Italy remained in the grips of heavy ice and snow.

"In the next few hours a low-pressure area arriving from the Atlantic will hit Sardinia before extending across southern regions during the day tomorrow, with rain and snowfall at low altitude and stronger winds," the warning said. Rain and snow were forecast in Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily in particular.

The civil protection department also issued a yellow warning for localised hydrogeological and hydraulic risk in Sicily, Calabria, Molise, much of Puglia and parts of Abruzzo. Central and southern regions have born the brunt of the recent cold snap, with temperatures dipping to -18 degrees Celsius in some places. Schools remained closed on Monday in dozens of municipalities in the central Abruzzo region including the coastal city of Pescara due to heavy snowfall.


Heavy snowfall causes transport chaos in Japan; 250 people injured

heavy snow in Tokyo
© KYODOChildren walk to school amid heavy snowfall in Chofu, western Tokyo, on Monday morning
Heavy snow in eastern and northeastern Japan wreaked havoc with transportation systems and injured about 250 people Monday as central Tokyo was blanketed with 6 cm.

At least 40 people were sent to hospitals in Tokyo alone, and another 30 were reported injured in Saitama Prefecture, police and fire departments across the region said.

Over the 24 hours through 6 p.m. Tuesday, up to 100 cm of snow is forecast to fall in Hokkaido and the Hokuriku region, 70 cm in the Tohoku and Tokai areas, 50 cm in the Chugoku region, and 40 cm in the Kanto and Koshin regions, according to the Meteorological Agency.

The low-pressure system responsible for the snow was predicted to remain through Tuesday, especially along the Sea of Japan coast.

The land ministry urged people to prepare for heavy snow in the affected areas and refrain from going out unless necessary. Snow tires and chains for cars were also recommended.

Snowflake Cold

Blizzards wreak havoc in Romania and Bulgaria, ports closed

 Bucharest, Romania, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016.
© Associated PressA man clears snow during a blizzard outside the Gara de Nord, the main railway station in Bucharest, Romania, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016.
Heavy snowfall and strong winds closed Romania's Black Sea ports including the main port of Constanta, and shut dozens of roads while snowstorms and torrential rains cut electricity to hundreds of towns in Bulgaria, authorities said on Sunday.

Blizzards dumped up to half a metre of snow in 12 hours in Romania, disrupting trains and forcing authorities to shut down all schools in Bucharest and nearby counties.

There were no reports of victims but emergency services said they were prepared to intervene, with about 6,000 policemen, gendarmes and firefighters currently involved in various missions across the country, the interior ministry said.

Snowfalls are not expected to ease until Monday in Romania and forecasters predict temperatures will fall to below minus 18 degrees Celsius next week.

Snowflake Cold

Severe situation in northern Bulgaria because of snow, floods and strong winds

Flooding Bulgaria
Flooding Bulgaria
Strong winds in northern Bulgaria, causing blizzards and snow drifts, hampered traffic in northern Bulgaria on January 18, with many roads closed.

Heavy snowfall and rains in several parts of Bulgaria at the weekend led to declarations of states of emergency in some municipalities, as serious winter weather conditions also hit Bulgaria's neighbouring countries Turkey, Greece, Romania and Serbia.

The state of emergency that had been declared at the weekend in Bulgaria's Smolyan municipality was lifted on the morning of January 18 but partial emergencies remained in place in the municipalities of Rudozem, Devin and Dospat.

The head of Bulgaria's Road Infrastructure Agency, Lazar Lazarov, said on the morning of January 18 that roads in western Bulgaria were passable provided that vehicles were prepared for wintry conditions but traffic in north-eastern Bulgaria still had difficulties.