Ferries tied up, schools closed due to weather

Heavy snowfall and strong winds continued on Tuesday morning, causing disruptions to ferry and train services, and closing down schools in many parts of the country, including in Attica.

The Athens-Thessaloniki train service has been suspended since Monday afternoon, when a rockfall due to rain at the Asopos station forced authorities to close the track. They could not on Tuesday morning estimate how long it would take to clear.

Ships remained tied up at the ports of Piraeus, Lavrio and Rafina because of gale-force winds on Tuesday, while the Panorama ferry, caught in winds with 65 passengers on board on its way back to Piraeus from Marmari in Evia on Monday evening had to find shelter in a cove near Marmari and finally made its way to Piraeus shortly after 3 a.m. on Tuesday.

In Attica, snowfall in the northern suburbs closed schools in Palaia and Nea Pendeli, as well as in Melissia, while traffic police warned that snow chains were needed on Parnitha Avenue and ice caused disruption in parts of the northern suburbs. Light snowfall was also reported in downtown Athens in the early hours.

Heavy snowfall in western and northern Greece, which caused delays in large sections of the road network as motorists were forced to pull over in order to attach snow chains, also left 37 rural hamlets in Grevena, northern Greece, in a state of emergency.

Roads were also affected in the Peloponnese, with closures between Tripoli and Pyrgos through Ancient Olympia, and from Patra to Kalavryta through Halandritsa.

The cold weather -- with more snow and strong winds -- is expected to persist throughout the country until Wednesday, when temperatures are forecast too begin rising again to reach seasonal level by the end of the week.


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