Archive for February 7th, 2018

February 7, 2018

Snow ,the white one has arrive and…!

Well and ….! the beat goes on in my belle France, snow is a tough subject to tackle. We had some snow lately as much as almost 6 inches or 15 cm.

Now let’s talk about an event that is made bigger than it should be. Snow in France in general and especially in the region of Paris , Île de France. I have been thru many snow storms in my life even monster ones in the NJ/NY area but here the snow and winter is milder yet the consequences are always histerical. This is what happened Tuesday to Wednesday night.

12 cm of snow felled in Paris proper and 11cm at Roissy CDG by Wednesday morning making the roads slippery as well as the railroad tracks. As of Wednesday morning at 7h30 ; the bus network has not started working because the snow on the ground, granted the numbers above in cm are about 4,7 inches : The tramways lines T1, T2, and T3a are stopped as well except between Charenton and Vincennes, the lines T7 and T8 are working ok. The lines T5 and T6 are stopped. The subway or métro is working normally even if there could be some difficulties like in line 8 and 13, and even if there are mostly underground ! The RER A, RER B and RER C, are having big problems and even stopped on some trajects in the central of the network; the RER D,circulation is stopped by the Stade de France to Paris. The traffic is normal on the RER D and RER E. The normal trains of the Transilien network are going out with big delays and sometimes 1 over 2. The lines H, K, N , and R are showing this impact. On the line L, traffic is stopped between Saint-Cloud and Versailles Rive Droite (lol ! my old line home) ,and on to Garches ,and Saint-Nom la Bretêche. On the line J, you have too one train over two between Paris and Ermont Eaubonne. The trains Paris to Les Mureaux have been cancelled. The trains Paris to Mantes-la-Jolie via Poissy are transfer to buses between Poissy and Mantes-la-Jolie. The trains Paris to Conflans-Sainte-Honorine are cancelled. There are no trains circulating on the line P between Paris and Coulommiers , and the traffic going East is very much slow down and delays between Paris, Meaux , and Château-Thierry. The train line U is cancelled as well.

Still as of this late morning there are 25 department between the Pays de la Loire and Lorraine in Orange alert (second highest level) ,these are the Aisne (02), Ardennes (08), Aube (10), Cher (18), Eure (27), Eure-et-Loir (28), Indre (36), Indre-et-Loire (37), Loir-et-Cher (41), Loiret (45), Maine-et-Loire (49), Marne (51), Mayenne (53), Oise (60), Orne (61), Sarthe (72), Paris , and the small beltway around it such as departments (Paris 75, Hauts de Seine-92, Seine Saint Denis-93 and Val de Marne-94), as well as further such as Seine-et-Marne (77), Yvelines (78), Yonne (89), Essonne (91) , and Val-d’Oise (95).

The TGV has reduce the speed considerably almost in half and the suburbians buses are in terminal ,nothing out. The region of Paris or Île de France has not seen this snow since December 2010 when almost 8000 automobilists were housed in the shopping center at Vélizy (Yvelines 78) to sleep the night. This caused 739 kms of traffic jams just after 19h30 (7:30pm) an absolut record not yet seen this time. I remember the Dec 2010 episode as my boys were in school at Versailles and the mayor’s office had ordered closed all roads into the citylol! My boys were in the bus stop by Europe near the castle; and I got on the car went around the roads around the castle not seen by police got in the city and got my boys out yeah!!!

An episode that is repeated and do not understand why nothing is ever done is the traffic jams and abandon vehicules in the N118 at the section of Vélizy-Villacoublay (Yvelines), direction Paris. There is no warning by the authorities, no salt trucks nothing and these people go by there and again got stuck on the snow waiting long hours to be clear ,and once again buses were sent to bring them to a nearby gymnasium . In the middle of the glacial cold some drivers decided to spent the night inside their cars with engines on to keep warm while the outside temperature was – 2 °C (about 28F). Even at 3h in the morning folks abandons their cars to get on foot the shopping center of the centre commercial Vélizy 2…2 km away!!! About 1,2 miles…

Yesterday Tuesday evening the gare Saint-Lazare around 19h30,hundreds were caught trapped in the tunnels of the metro line 13, which I have taken and it is an inferno, see photo.

The Eiffel tower is closed to visitors yesterday Tuesday as always in bad weather and strong winds they close it for prevention. The managing firm is asking visitors to check the webpage and social network to ascertain it will be open when they arrive on these days. My trip to Paris Thursday cancelled ! The SNCF has advised folks to delayed their trips if possible so I did, for me been here Paris can wait!!!

Already in the social networks here the folks are very upset about the lack of information on the travelers on the traffic conditions. The internet sites of the SNCF, Transilien, and RATP do not work! And the information flash on the train stations are not given in good time ; nothing new. Those visiting are lucky to come in good working orders of the public transport system but the poor folks that live here find them very bad but no other better solutions to go to work are available. I am lucky out of that mess in lovely Brittany!!!

The news flash in the Paris region where the traffic was stop all night to this morning already many folks taken refuge in the train stations of Montparnasse (my entry now to Paris) and Austerlitz, about 700 of them ; as well as about 230 at the airport at Orly According to the police report from Paris.

The situation can become critical as the night from Wednesday to Thursday the temperature will drop to less than 10 degrees Celsius or about 14F and icy condition on the roads and rails. The snow is probably to stay on the ground for several days with accumulations going in places as much as 15 cm or about 5,9 inches. And by Friday, we will have another snow storm coming from the northwest to areas of the north or now Hauts-de-France down to the Limousin ,and passing again by the Paris region of Ile-de-France.

Latest news coming on is that on the N118 by the crossroad of  Vélizy (Yvelines)  going to the south with more than 300 vehicules blocking the highway and 650 on the sides parked!! The snow felled 30 cm in the department Eure–et-Loire with very low temperatures, 8 cm at Tours (lol just left there ok), 12 cm in Paris, 11 cm in Blois, 13 at Roissy CDG and Orly airports, 14 cm in Orleans, and 15 cm in Chartres in early morning today.

On a historical note the cold front of February 1956 happening from February 1st to the 27th the minimum temperatures were of -15 °C (about 5F) during 15 days in the NorthEast. When the average for the country in this month is lower than 9 °C (about 48F) monthly for the period 1981-2010,placing February 1956 as the most colder since the early 20C ; so where is the climate change lol !!!

Of course we were not spare at least in the morning hours, then it cleared up nicely sunny.

Stay tune for the white one, is news here, big time, well at least in Brittany we had some in the morning but by now all is sunshine lol!!! Be careful on the roads …… and happy travels. Cheers!!

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