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EMERCOM warns of possible ice-pellet storms Tuesday, Wednesday

October 30, 2012, 7:24 UTC+3

EMERCOM forecasts a hike in the number of road accidents and changes in the schedules of commercial jet and/or helicopter flights

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MOSCOW, October 30 (Itar-Tass) – Moscow region’s territorial branch of the Ministry for Emergency Situations and Civil Defense /EMERCOM/ has issued a warning about the possibility of a snow-pellet storm – also known as ‘icy rain’ – in different parts of the region.

“Heavy rainfall and an icy rain, sleeting, the aggregation of snow and ice on the cables of power transmission lines, gust of wind of 17 to 22 meters per second, and icing on the pavements is expected in the Moscow region and the adjoining territories on the night from Tuesday to Wednesday and throughout Wednesday, as a cyclone from the Balkans will thrust into Russia’s Central Federal District,” EMERCOM said in its warning.

These features of weather may result in the ruptures of power transmission line cables and communication lines, as well as in the collapsing of poorly installed and large-format advertising billboards and/or screens.

In addition, EMERCOM forecasts a hike in the number of road accidents and changes in the schedules of commercial jet and/or helicopter flights.

An ice-pellet storm that poured down on Moscow City and a greater part of the Moscow region in the last days of December 2010 brought about amassed ruptures and collapses of power lines. The resultant electricity blackouts affected more than 400,000 people and brought to a standstill all the operations at Domodedovo, Russia’s largest airport.

In Moscow alone, 4,600 trees collapsed under the masses of sleet and the strength of wind, killing one person and inflicting injuries on another 27 people.

At much the same time, ice-pellet storms were registered in the Urals and Volga Federal Districts.

According to the forecasts provided by Russia’s Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environment Monitoring /Rosgidromet/, snow is likely to start falling in Moscow and the adjoining areas in the later part of the afternoon, while the first half of the day will mostly be cloudy and humid, with temperatures of about zero degrees Celsius.

Overnight to Wednesday will be slippery and with the air temperature likely to fall to minus 2.

Sleeting and rainfall will intensify Wednesday. The icing of roads will increase and the temperature range will widen from 5 to 7 degrees in the during the daytime to minus five overnight to Thursday.

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