Cold grips parts of Europe; 4 die in Bulgaria


SOFIA, Bulgaria
(AP) — A cold spell and snowstorms are sweeping across parts of central and eastern Europe, disrupting power supplies, travel and schools. Four people have died in Bulgaria over the past few days, and Wednesday was the coldest day of the year in Moscow. In Britain, where the problem has been heavy rain, the government’s emergency committee met Wednesday to find ways to help people living in villages that have been flooded since the Christmas period. Bulgaria’s heavy snow and strong winds have left dozens of villages in the eastern half of the Balkan country without electricity and water. A 76-year-old man died after getting stuck in a snowdrift in the village of Povet, near the Bulgarian-Turkish border. Three other men have died in weather-related incidents in eastern villages in the last two days. Many roads are closed to traffic while rescue teams try to bring food supplies to remote areas. Hundreds of schools remain closed, and the main Black Sea port of Varna was shut because of high winds. Snow fell in the central Adriatic coast in Croatia, which is highly unusual because the region has a Mediterranean climate. The ice and snow in the seaside town of Sibenik prompted authorities to close down schools there. Heavy snow is also falling in neighboring Montenegro, causing road traffic problems. More
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