Deadly Winter Storm Claims at Least 13 Lives Across Europe

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Checking the snowpack in Kitzbuhel on the weekend. Credit: Mountainwatch

Deadly winter weather blasted Europe for yet another day Tuesday, trapping hundreds of people in Alpine regions, whipping up high winds that caused flight delays and cancellations and raising the risks of more deadly avalanches in the mountains, reports Kirsten Grieshaber for AP NewsAt least 13 people have been killed in weather-related accidents in Europe over the last week, most of them from avalanches.

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High avalanche risk across Europe.

In Norway, attempts to find the bodies of four skiers were again put on hold due to poor visibility and heavy snowfall. A 29-year Swedish woman and three Finns, aged 29, 32 and 36, were presumed dead after a 300-meter (990-foot) wide avalanche hit a valley near the northern city of Tromsoe last week.

Romanian police on Tuesday found the frozen body of a 67-year-old man in a carpark in the southern city of Slatina after his wife reported he hadn’t returned from work the previous day. Temperatures in Romania plunged to a low of -11.2F in one area.

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While there’s been some good skiing in the resorts, but this much snow brings its own challenges to day-to-day living. Obertauern in the south-east of Salzburg. Credit: Mountainwatch

In Austria, hundreds of residents were stuck in their homes due to blocked roads and some regions experienced power outages after snow-laden trees took down power lines. Schools in some Austrian regions remained closed for a second day and homeowners were advised to remove snow from their roofs after several buildings collapsed.

On Monday night, 11 German hikers had to be rescued by mountaineers from a cabin near Salzburg, after having been snowed in without electricity and little food since Friday. Other people have also been killed by avalanches in Switzerland, Austria, and Germany, and authorities warned that continuing snowfall is increasing the already high risk of more avalanches.

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A snow plow clears the road of snow in Hofsgrund, southern Germany, on Tuesday. Credit: PATRICK SEEGER / DPA VIA AP

In Greece, schools in Athens and many surrounding areas remained closed after snowfall blanketed the capital and temperatures in some parts of the Mediterranean nation plunged well below freezing. Some rural mountain roads were closed.

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