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First big winter storm pours out on the Balkans

Date: 23.11.2008

The storm that brought snow to Sofia hit most of the rest of the Balkans with cold rain and slush instead.

In Romania, the National Meteorological Administration showed most of the country at freezing or near-freezing temperatures, with snow, rain and wind expected to last through Sunday.

Greece and most of the western Balkans have also been hit by the storm, which extends up to Russia. The cloud pattern is moving eastward, and by Monday, the sun should be out again.

The Turkish State Meteorological Service showed warm north-easterly winds covering most of the central area of country on the Asian side, with rain and lightning nearer the coast and on the border with Syria, with rain increasingly covering the country as the day progresses. Sometime before midnight of November 22 in 23 2008, the storm currently crossing Bulgaria will enter Turkey, bringing with it the cold front.

In Bulgaria, the first snowfall of 2007 came on October 20, a full month earlier than in 2008. The National Meteorological Institute forecast, in its October 29 2008 winter prognosis, this season to be of average coldness and precipitation.

Since this morning, the snow has spread east to most of the rest of the country. Sofia mayor Boiko Borissov gave a news conference on the weather this afternoon, November 22. He said, as reported by netinfo.bg, that by 6.30am, snow removal equipment had been out on the roads, working efficiently to clear the snow. The city owned 525 such machines, he said. There were also emergency crews on dangerous matter removal duty.

Elsewhere in the country, major highways are wet, with congestion reported around Vladaya on the Sofia-Pernik road, at Shipka Pass and around Vakarel on the Trakiya Highway.

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