Winter hits across Germany with deadly force

Winter hits across Germany with deadly force
The winter weather claimed several lives across Germany at the start of the weekend, with road accidents in icy conditions.

Two people died and three more were seriously injured near Fulda in northern Hesse when a minivan slid across the road and into a truck coming in the opposite direction.

A woman died in Königslutter near Braunschweig when she crashed into a truck being used by the winter roads service, which was gritting at the time.

Strong winds of speeds up to 119 kilometres per hour battered the west and south regions of the country, resulting in many fallen trees and blocked roads and railways.

Frankfurt international airport was badly affected with 110 flights cancelled during Friday evening – because the winds were so strong, landings and take-offs could not be conducted safely.

The central train station in Duisburg was evacuated after parts of the roof were torn off in the wind, while in Hilden near Düsseldorf, the whole roof of a block of flats came off and landed on a nearby supermarket.

Many schools in Bavaria, which were scheduled to teach children on Saturday were closed in anticipation of heavy snowfall.

The weekend is expected to remain wintry, with meteorologists predicting heavy snowfall and temperatures around zero for Saturday in the south. The north should remain dry, with sunshine and temperatures up to five degrees.