Europe: arctic kills

Manfred Theis (manfredtheis@hotmail.com)
Fri, 27 Nov 1998 14:28:23 PST


--------- Forwarded Message ---------

DATE: Tue, 24 Nov 1998 09:16:50
From: Blazing Star <sananda@hotmail.com>
To: AHS-L@AMERICAN.EDU

Cold kills 71 across Europe

BUCHAREST (AP) - An early-season Arctic cold wave
and accompanying blizzards were reported Monday to
have killed at least 71 people across Europe.

Fountains in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
were completely frozen and in Mouthe, eastern
France, temperatures fell to -21 degrees C.

About 100 homeless people staged a sit-in at the
headquarters of the state-run medical assistance
service in Paris to demand better protection in
winter.

Three deaths were blamed on the cold in Italy.
Authorities reported the death of a 91-year-old
Italian man who was found in his unheated home in
Calabria, southern Italy. The cold was also blamed
when a husband and wife were killed by
carbon-monoxide poisoning - apparently from a
defective heater.

Weather played a role in at least 24 deaths in
Romania and Bulgaria the last three days. In
Poland, 36 people died, most of them homeless or
those who passed out in the cold after drinking
alcohol, police said.

In France, the death toll from the cold snap rose
Monday to eight people, several of them homeless
men.

Temperatures in central and eastern Poland over
the weekend dipped to -20 degrees. The lowest
reported temperature was -26 early Sunday in
Ostroleka, in northeastern Poland.

The cold wave hit Nov. 16, making it one of the
coldest Novembers in Poland in recent years.
Weather forecasters predict higher temperatures in
the next few days, though it was uncertain whether
they would climb above freezing.

In Romania, at least 21 people died from the cold
and in weather-related accidents on snow-covered
roads since Friday. Temperatures plunged to -26
early Monday.

About 200 people spent more than 48 hours stranded
in their cars after winds whipped snowdrifts
across main highways in southern Romania. Army
vehicles rescued most drivers but six people froze
to death over the weekend after being trapped in
cars.

Dozens of trains were cancelled and 200
communities were without electricity, the
Libertatea newspaper reported Monday. Some 15
major roads were blocked by snowdrifts as high as
1.5 metres. Police urged drivers not to travel in
snowy areas.

In Bucharest, dozens of cars smashed into other
vehicles and skidded in the icy conditions. The
Emergency Hospital in Bucharest said it treated 80
people for fractures and frostbite over the
weekend.

In Bulgaria, three people died in the northwestern
region Montana, 24 Chassa newspaper reported. Some
highways were blocked and some areas were without
power, phones and running water.

The Black Sea ports Burgas in Bulgaria and
Constanta in Romania were closed Monday due to
storms, state radio reported.

=A9 The Canadian Press, 1998

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