Snowstorms paralyze traffic between Poland and the Baltic countries



Blizzards paralyzed road traffic on the 55-kilometer stretch of the main road between Poland and the Baltic states while high winds and snow battered highways in Lithuania.

Snowstorms between the town of Marijampole in southern Lithuania and the Polish border have also caused countless accidents and forced trucks into ditches.

The pileups blocked access to snowplows, which also paralyzed traffic. Poland also closed its border to incoming trucks on Friday morning but reopened it a few hours later, but on the Lithuanian side traffic was still not moving as of 13:00 GMT on Friday afternoon.

While the E67 motorway is the main artery between Central Europe and the Baltic States connecting Prague, Warsaw, Kaunis, Riga, Tallinn and Helsinki, the section between Marijampole and the Polish border is mostly single-track. According to Lithuanian regulations, truck owners themselves are responsible for handling accidents, delaying the removal of stuck vehicles.

Meanwhile, western parts of Lithuania also suffered from strong winds. A few buses slid off the roads as the Postal Services warned of delays. The main port of Klaipeda has been closed since Wednesday evening and in the most popular resort town of Palanga, gale force gusts have uprooted trees and destroyed restaurant terraces.

A river also burst its banks and the wooden pier was damaged.

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