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Temperatures drop, schools close as snowstorm Filippos hits Greece

Snowy conditions and unseasonably low temperatures prevailed in much of Greece on Wednesday, as the arrival of storm Filippos brought snow even at low altitudes as well as rainstorms further south.

Schools in western and central Macedonia have closed due to the snowfall where temperatures dropped below zero. Snowfall continued in the mountainous regions of the mainland and in the lowlands of Epirus, Macedonia and Thrace. Gradually, the snowfall will extend to areas of Thessaly and central Greece with low altitude, as well as in the mountains of Crete. Snow will also fall in the Sporades, Evia and the islands of the northern Aegean overnight.

In Mount Pilio and the nearby city of Volos, drivers are advised to use snow chains and many schools remained closed.

In Attica, police have forbidden trucks from using Greece’s main Athens-Lamia highway from the Kalyftakis junction onwards due to snowfall and all cars are required to use snow chains. Vehicles are also banned from travelling beyond the cable car terminal in Mount Parnitha due to the snow, while all trucks over 3.5 tonnes and all vehicles not equipped with snow chains have been forbidden to use the old Elefsina-Thiva national road.

The ban does not apply to emergency vehicles, road assistance vehicles and trucks carrying salt, while it will be lifted when conditions improve.

According to the National Observatory of Athens weather service, the cold snap is caused by the arrival of cold air masses from northern Europe.

The rains and snowfall are forecast to gradually subside from Wednesday afternoon, while storms are expected to continue for the islands of the Aegean and Crete, while weather conditions are expected to worsen on Thursday.