Our freezing conditions have ground roads, trains and planes to a halt, and people have struggled to go about their daily lives.
And the harsh weather conditions have been mimicked in Germany this week too, with temperatures hitting well below freezing. There were some two thousand road accidents on icy and barren roads, with many being impassable due to ice and snow drifts, causing chaos across the country. An accident outside Munich caused a ten kilometre tailback, and frustrated motorists were stranded in their cars for hours on end, in the freezing conditions. More than two hundred and fifty flights were cancelled form Frankfurt airport alone, and two hundred passengers had to be evacuated form a train when a tree toppled onto the line. The train was stuck and the power failed, causing dropping temperatures and dangerous conditions for the passengers.
In other areas, a livestock van overturned and released over one hundred pigs onto the road, causing danger for other road users. Forty children were trapped in a school in the north when a snow drift blocked the exits, and were rescued some six hours later.
In southern Germany, the snow helped police catch a criminal, who made off on a bicycle. The tracks were left in the snow and the police followed him and made an arrest.
A mass snowball fight broke out near the capital, with five hundred people participating. It turned riotous and police made several arrests, as snowballs were thrown with rocks and firecrackers.
If you are planning on travelling to Germany be aware that there may be disruptions, and book Holiday Insurance before travelling.