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Heaviest Snow in Decades Batters U.K., Ireland and the Continent

Northern Spain also become paralyzed by snowfall, and a 65-year-old man died after slipping on a snow-covered pavement, the Spanish News agency Europa Press reported. Another older man was found dead in the Netherlands after falling through ice while skating, the BBC reported.

Ireland, which is virtually ignored by the British news media, was bracing for a direct hit on Thursday from Emma, the powerful storm system roaring up from the Bay of Biscay that is expected to deliver 60-mile-an-hour winds and fine, granular snow, leading to snow drifts and whiteout conditions across most or all of the island.

The country was in near lockdown on Wednesday as meteorologists forecast that up to 15 inches of fresh snow would fall in less than 24 hours between Thursday afternoon and 3 p.m. Friday.

The Irish government issued a “status red” weather warning for the east of the island, closing schools and public offices, shutting down public transport and advising businesses to close. All flights were canceled at the Dublin airport on Thursday afternoon, and the police told people not to leave their homes, except in emergencies, from 4 p.m. on Thursday, when the storm was expected to intensify.

Meteorologists say that the cold spell of weather could last for up to two weeks, and that even with temperatures expected to return to higher single digits in the daytime next week, temperatures will most likely remain close to freezing at night.

“It will be a very cold start to spring,” Ms. Moore warned.

Source: NYT > World

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