Image: Screencap from video posted by Rudaw English
As much as 5 meters, about 16 ½ feet of snow, has fallen in some areas of Turkey, leaving villages snowed in, endangering lives.
“In Turkey’s Kurdish southeast, heavy snow and cold temperatures have brought life to a standstill. Hundreds of villages are snowed in,” reported Rudaw.net on January 27. “‘All the roads are closed and the people are stuck,’” Hakkari (Colemerg) resident Silhedin Haznedar told Rudaw.net. “‘There is no place for us to go due to snow.’”
In in Hakkari, Turkey snow is topping 5 meters high in some places, reports the Sarajevo Times. The best efforts of crews on the ground have cleared some roads, allowing people in some areas to get necessities. Despite these efforts, however, Rudaw.net reports:
Roads to 1,414 villages have been closed in Hakkari, Bitlis, Mus, and Van.
In some areas like Semdinli, three meters of snow has fallen and villagers say this is the most snow they’ve seen in over three decades.
Hakkari is one of the regions hit hard by the snow. Roads connecting the city center to 355 outlying villages are blocked and the electricity is out in many places.
With more snow forecast to fall through the end of the month, it is unclear whether municipal workers will be able to keep roads currently cleared open, much less when existing closed roads to snowbound villages will be snow-free and open to regular traffic.