Middle East snow

16th January, 2015

Despite a number of wintery showers in recent days, many of us here in the UK are continuing to enjoy what has been a relatively mild start to the New Year. Whilst we would usually expect to see temperatures at this time of year between 3 and 5 degrees centigrade, in many areas it remains several degrees higher than that and even reaching double figures in areas such as The Channel Islands.

But it is not just here in the UK where unseasonal conditions are having an impact. Last week there was snow in the Middle East as an unprecedented winter storm led to usually hot and sunny locations being transformed into white winter wonderlands. Large areas were covered including:

  • Turkey
  • Israel
  • Lebanon
  • Kosovo
  • Cyprus
  • Syria
  • Palestine

In Tabuk in north-western Saudi Arabia, Bedouin shepherds and their camels were forced to take shelter in their tents as snow fell and temperatures dropped below zero. This is the third consecutive year that the region has experienced some level of snowfall, but last week's storm was particularly intense.

Rare Winter Snow Storm

The harsh winter storm has been blamed on an unusually sharp dip in the jet stream which brought strong winds and snow to many areas. Whilst temperatures can fall close to zero during winter in many parts of the region, until recently people living there had gone decades without experiencing any snow. However, in the last few years a number of records have been broken:

  • In 2013 Egypt experienced its first snowfall for 100 years, with snow falling in the capital Cairo for the first time in 112 years.
  • In the same year, the city of Jerusalem was blanketed under four inches of snow - the most seen in the city for 60 years.
  • In 2014 Iran saw its heaviest snowfall for 50 years.

Unfortunately the Middle East is a little outside our service area, but with further snow showers expected across large parts of the country in the coming days we are expecting to be busy closer to home!

If you are yet to put a plan in place for dealing with snow and ice, feel free to give us a call and we will be happy to arrange a quotation that is tailored to suit your business or organisation.

Camels resting in the snow

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