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Heavy snowfall cuts off towns, causes black-outs across much of Slovakia

Extreme weather, in particular high winds and heavy snowfall, is causing blackouts and problems with power supplies in both Košice and Prešov Regions today, Thursday, February 7, the TASR newswire reports. By around noon, more than 80,000 households and businesses were affected - in particular the localities of Spišská Nová Ves, Prešov, Bardejov, Košice and Rožňava.

Extreme weather, in particular high winds and heavy snowfall, is causing blackouts and problems with power supplies in both Košice and Prešov Regions today, Thursday, February 7, the TASR newswire reports. By around noon, more than 80,000 households and businesses were affected - in particular the localities of Spišská Nová Ves, Prešov, Bardejov, Košice and Rožňava.

The municipality of Zlatá Idka in the Košice-environs district is entirely cut off by heavy snowfall and fallen trees. Its mayor, Stanislav Rusnák, told TASR that the roads from the neighbouring municipalities of Hýľov and Rudník were both blocked. Trees fell on two cars driving on the road and one woman was injured and had to be hospitalised. More cars then got stuck on the road, Rusnák added. Firemen tried to clear the road, but state forestry company (Štátne Lesy) employees had to be summoned too. The mayor added that Zlatá Idka had been without electricity since 3:00 in the morning.

The city of Prešov announced a state of emergency and asked people not to drive, but use public transport instead. Prešov had already asked the army for help in clearing masses of snow, the SITA newswire wrote. Routes used by public transport are being cleared as a priority. Snow is expected to keep falling until at least 18:00.

Parts of central Slovakia, especially the northern region of Orava and areas around Banská Bystrica are also suffering from heavy snow. In Orava and around Žilina, more than 11,000 addresses were left without electricity on Wednesday, February 6, but the situation was reported to have improved by Thursday. In the Revúca district fallen trees blocked several roads on Thursday. The situation was reported to be worst between Muráň and Červená Skala, TASR wrote.

Sources: TASR, SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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