In Madrid, powder fans are served, Saturday January 9, 2021. -
GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP
All dressed in white.
The snowstorm that hit Spain on Friday wreaked havoc on the country, leaving hundreds of motorists stranded, Madrid airport closed and a country paralyzed, as the worst is yet to come with 20 additional centimeters expected this Saturday.
This snowfall, the worst for 50 years in Spain, and which did not weaken overnight between Friday and Saturday, placed five regions in the center of the country on red alert on Saturday morning.
First, the Madrid region where public buses have been suspended, as well as garbage collection and where Barajas international airport, closed since Friday evening, will remain closed for "security reasons" all day long. Saturday.
On Friday, around thirty flights have already been canceled and almost as many have to land elsewhere.
Unseen falls since 1971
“Today has been difficult, but tomorrow will be even more so.
Madrid City Hall is going to work hard but we need you to stay at home tomorrow, ”tweeted Madrid Mayor José Luis Martinez-Almeida in a video posted shortly before midnight.
Hoy ha sido un día complicado pero mañana va a ser más difícil aún.
Desde el Ayuntamiento vamos a trabajar a destajo pero necesitamos que mañana os quedéis en casa.
- José Luis Martínez-Almeida (@AlmeidaPP_) January 8, 2021
The snow disrupted traffic on nearly 400 roads, according to the transport authority.
The Madrid region security and emergency agency said it had “worked all night to help” stranded motorists and “released 1,000 vehicles”, asking others to “remain patient”.
The town, which hadn't been covered in such a snowpack since 1971, could see skiers all the way to its famous Puerta del Sol square, or even a man pulled by five dogs on a sled.
Besides Madrid, Aragon, the region of Valencia and that of Castile-La Mancha and Catalonia were the areas most affected by this storm.
According to the weather forecasting agency AEMET, 20 centimeters of snow are still expected to fall on Saturday in Madrid and on the central plateau of the country and up to 50 centimeters could cover the highest areas in this part of the country.
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Pyrenees: Snow fell in abundance for the partial opening of the small resorts