Snow blankets most of the Netherlands, bringing transport chaos

All but northern parts of the Netherlands were blanketed by snow on Tuesday bringing chaos to the roads and public transport.


The ANWB motoring organisation said the total 1,003 kilometres of traffic jams recorded during the morning rush hour was the longest on record. Dutch Rail (NS) reduced services in order to stop the rail network grinding to a standstill, but there were major problems around Rotterdam and The Hague.
The traffic chaos is heaviest in the central urban belt from Amsterdam to Rotterdam and The Hague, the ABWB said. But there are also considerable problems on the roads in Zeeland and western parts of Noord-Brabant.
More snow
Between five and 10 centimetres of snow have fallen in southern parts of the country, with up to five cm in central areas. But according to one report, up to 19 cm may have fallen in The Hague, making it an exception to the rest of the country, website Weerplaza.nl said.
Isolated snow showers are expected to continue for most of the day, weather forecasters say.
The temperature is expected to remain below zero all day and plunge to as low as -8 Celcius overnight, as the big freeze continues towards the weekend.
Trains and planes
Train services have been hardest hit in Zuid-Holland, with cancellations hitting commuters in The Hague, Gouda and Rotterdam because of problems with the points, the NS said.
The NS said on Monday evening it would run reduced services because of the wintry weather. This means some 50% fewer trains are operating on some routes.
Schiphol airport says passengers should be prepared for delays and cancellations because of the snow, and is urging people to check with their airline for details.The problems are not only due to the weather conditions in the Netherlands but abroad, where services have also been scrapped.
Eindhoven and Rotterdam regional airports said flights were getting away with some delays.
Bus and tram services are running in most places but subject to delays and some cancellations.
The snow also led to 1,800 driving tests being cancelled.
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