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Berlin faces record cold start to December
Photo: DPA

Berlin faces record cold start to December

Published: 01 Dec 2010 07:56 GMT+01:00
Updated: 01 Dec 2010 11:36 GMT+01:00

Berlin is set for the coldest start to December on record, the German Weather Service (DWD) said Wednesday, as freezing temperatures and snow continued to cause transport chaos across the country.

DWD meteorologist Gerd Saalfrank said the temperature could drop as low as -13 degrees Celsius overnight with wind chill taking the effective temperature down to -22 degrees. The surrounding state of Brandenburg would be even colder.

The daunting news came as flight cancellations continued at Germany’s busiest airport Wednesday morning with Frankfurt stopping at least 39 flights because of snow and ice.

Click here for photos of the winter weather chaos.

Saalfrank said the previous record for the lowest temperature in Berlin on December 1 was -10.8 degrees in 1931.

“We have a good chance of beating that,” he said. “We’re expecting temperatures overnight in Berlin to be as low as -12 or -13 degrees. In Brandenburg you can add another two degrees below that.”

It would snow through the night, dumping five centimetres on Berlin and 10 centimetres in Brandenburg, he added.

Weather service Meteomedia’s storm centre warned of heavy snowfall for the northern states of Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania for Wednesday night. Parts of those states could expect 15 centimetres of snow, the centre said.

Frankfurt airport’s western runway was only partly usable because of strong winds of up to 15 knots. Pilots were free to decide whether or not to fly. Airport spokeswoman Waltraud Riehemann said at least 39 flights had been cancelled and many more delayed.

Air traffic was taking off and landing normally in Berlin, said a spokeswoman for Berliner Flughäfen, which manages Tegel and Schönefeld airports.

“There have been no reports to me that flights will be cancelled today because of bad weather,” she said.

On Tuesday, some 300 flights had been cancelled at Frankfurt because of snow and ice on the runways, leaving thousands of travellers stranded. About 400 camp beds were set up for people with nowhere else to stay, though most were taken to hotels.

Click here for The Local's weather forecast.

DPA/dw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

09:48 December 1, 2010 by Clapoti
"some 300 flights had been cancelled because of snow and ice on the runways"

Well just remove the snow and ice and there you go... what do you think they do at airports in Canada, Russia, Finland, ... ???
10:22 December 1, 2010 by PawD
If this was happening in New Delhi then I wouldn't have been surprised... but I am really surprised this is happening in the most economically prosperous country of Europe... c'mon it snows every winter... why can't the authorities be more prepared?
10:23 December 1, 2010 by Clapoti
Yeah I really don't understand that either.
11:11 December 1, 2010 by dbert4
As usual, this story is a poor excuse for the German version. The whole story is that Lufthansa is blaming FRAPORT AG for the flight cancelations which happened less because of runway ice than because of airplane ice. The cancelations reflect on the inability of FRAPORT to de-ice planes in the quantity which the irlines need and their contract requires. Lufthansa has accused FRAPORT of insufficent manning.
12:20 December 1, 2010 by catjones
London flights canceled? No problem, take the chunnel. Oh, wait, it's winter. Trains get stuck. What to do, what to do.
15:22 December 1, 2010 by jameswren
oh what a shock! Berlin not prepared for winter, just like last year! Every street is a death trap with pavements covered in 10 inches of thick ice, thank god we moved to Austria where stuff actually gets done. Berlin, I know people say you are poor, but this isn't very sexy either. Still, I don't have to sit on that god awful ubahn and look at those miserable idiots wearing black on my way to the crappy end of Freidrichstrasse....!!!
19:32 December 1, 2010 by JohnnesKönig
It's official! Global warming has been fixed! Can we unfix it till next spring?
22:15 December 1, 2010 by DinhoPilot
Breaking News. Scientists discover the earth is not actually warming up but cooling down. Researchers are now puzzled with what is called "Global cooling"...
08:54 December 2, 2010 by So36
@jameswren. I don't know what you're ranting about, they're shoving the streets as I type with Prussian efficiency. Now you just have deal with an entire nation of Austrians. Viel Spass.
09:54 December 2, 2010 by Clapoti
Ok, after the airplanes... somebody has to explain to me why the S-Bahn cannot run properly when there is not even 5 cm of fresh snow... it's a train... on tracks...
13:31 December 2, 2010 by canadianinberlin
@Clapoti, come now, English trams are the best example, it's the wrong type of leaves.. er, snow!
12:11 December 3, 2010 by mehta_p
The Day After Tommorrow...!!!

unexpectedly too early snow fall
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