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Heavy Winter Storms Hit Europe

United Kingdom —(Map)

Serious snow storms are causing big problems all through Europe. The storms, which people are calling the “Beast from the East”, have been very hard on the United Kingdom (UK)  . Schools, roads, airports, and businesses have been closed. Some people have died.

The UK was hit by a storm called the Beast from the East.
The UK was hit by a storm called the Beast from the East.
(Source: DJC Skellingthorpe, via Wikimedia Commons.)

The weather in Europe usually comes in from the west, over the Atlantic ocean. This keeps the weather warmer and calmer. But the big storm system is coming in from the east this time. It is coming from cold countries in northern Europe like Siberia. That is why people are calling it the “Beast from the East”.

Storms over Europe - a view from the sky
Storms over Europe – a view from the sky
(Source: NASA, via Wikimedia Commons.)

To make things worse, another storm, called Storm Emma, has come up from the south. Storm Emma is making big blizzards as it meets the Beast from the East. The Met, the office that predicts the weather in the UK, put out a “red alert”. A red alert is the most serious weather warning the Met has. People think Ireland will be hit very hard by the storms soon.

The storms are bringing ice, snow, strong winds, and very cold weather with them. In parts of the UK and Ireland, people have been told not to drive or even go out. Some people who drove got stuck on highways. The weather has also made it hard for people who are sick or hurt. It is hard for ambulances to travel on the roads. Some doctors and hospital workers had to walk to get to work. The UK is also worried that they might not have enough gas to keep making electricity and heating homes.

Some people who drove in the snow got stuck.
Some people who drove in the snow got stuck.
(Source: Ian Livesey, via Flickr)

The storms have had effects on the rest of Europe, too. Places like Poland, Romania, and Sweden have been very cold. Ice and snow have hit parts of Spain and France hard. In places where it is usually warm in winter, people are seeing unusual sights, like snow on palm trees. In Italy, some towns have had their first snow in six years.


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