Medea continues to hit Greece with snow in Athens and forces a stop to vaccination

The cold and snow storm Medea continues to rage over much of Greece on Tuesday and in addition to claiming the first two deaths, it has forced the cancellation of the covid vaccination scheduled for today in the region of Greece. Capital penthouse.

A 56-year-old shepherd died on the island of Crete after being trapped by snow as he tried to approach his flock of sheep.

Passers-by in the snow in Athens after the passage of Medea

PANTELIS SAITAS / EFE

Snow prevented a quick rescue and when firefighters and an ambulance arrived at his location he was already dead.

Another 80-year-old man died at his home in a remote village on the island of Evia, where some towns have been without electricity and running water for three days. There were also power outages in about fifteen municipalities in the capital region.

The use of chains is mandatory in virtually all suburbs of the capital and even in some city centers.

A man walks past the Roman Agora during heavy snowfall over Athens, February 16, 2021. - Greece's meteorological agency said the

A man walks past a Roman agora during heavy snowfall in Athens, Greece

LOUISA GOULIAMAKI / AFP

Civil Protection has asked all Atica workers from the morning, if possible, to avoid leaving their homes before ten o’clock in the morning.

In Athens, virtually all road traffic collapsed and firefighters kept responding to calls from motorists, whose vehicles were trapped in the snow for not wearing chains. The use of chains is mandatory in virtually all suburbs of the capital and even in some city centers.

Vaccination suspended

An initial notice that the vaccination campaign would be delayed until 10:30 a.m. (0830 GMT) had to be updated and was eventually suspended throughout the day on Tuesday, which the conservative government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis wanted avoid at all costs.

Snow covers a beach following a heavy snowfall in Artemida, Greece, February 16, 2021. Photo taken with a drone.  REUTERS/Vassilis Triandafyllou

Snow covers the beach of Artemida, Greece

Vassilis Triandafyllou / REUTERS

In anticipation of the storm, the Civil Protection had organized a special device which provided for the reinforcement of the activity of snowplows around the health centers and, if necessary, even the transfer of the sick to the vaccination points.

However, this special operation had only been planned for rural areas and was not to be necessary for the capital.

After an emergency meeting with the Civil Protection directorate and meteorological services, Mitsotakis asked citizens to be patient and assured that all vaccines will be rescheduled “as soon as possible”.

A Greek presidential guard from Evzoni stands near the monument of the Unknown Soldier in central Athens during a rare heavy snowfall in the city on February 16, 2021. – Greece's meteorological agency said the

An official guard of the Greek Presidency, Evzoni, guards the official building next to the Monument to the Unknown Soldier in central Athens

LOUISA GOULIAMAKI / AFP

traffic collapse

Heavy snowfall in Athens forced the circulation of trains, trams, metros and buses to be suspended and many flights had to be cancelled.

The problems also persist in maritime traffic, due to the violent winds which blow in particular in the Aegean Sea with gusts which exceed one hundred kilometers per hour. For this reason, all connections from the three ports surrounding the Greek capital have been suspended. In the center of Athens, the weight of the snow caused the fall of many small or dry trees.

Medea is Greece’s worst snowstorm in more than a decade, not only because of the amount that has fallen, but also because of freezing temperatures that reached 22 degrees below zero in some mountainous northern regions.

People take photos as snow falls in front of the Greek parliament in Athens, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. A cold front hit Greece, dropping temperatures from 20 degrees Celsius (about 70 degrees Fahrenheit) on Friday to well below zero on Tuesday, and heavy snowfall in central Athens.  (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

Citizens take photos during snowfall in front of the Greek Parliament in Athens

AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis

While in the north and center of the country the phenomena are weakening, Medea will continue today to punish the Aegean Sea, and the snowfall will reach the islands of the Cyclades, as well as certain mountainous areas of the island of Crete.

In the north of the country, frosts will persist, but snowfall will not, and meteorologists predict that the situation will start to improve from Wednesday.

In this aerial photograph, the ancient Acropolis is covered in snow during a rare heavy snowfall in the city of Athens on February 16, 2021. - Greece's meteorological agency said the

Aerial image of the ancient Acropolis of Athens covered in snow, a weather situation that had not happened for 20 years

Photo by Antonis NIKOLOPOULOS / Eurokinissi / AFP

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