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France

Heavy snowfall halts French air and road traffic

Reuters/John Schults

All traffic to Paris's main airport stopped Wednesday due to heavy showfall. Most buses have stopped running in the Paris region and the Eiffel Tower is closed to the public.All heavy goods traffic is also prohibited on the roads, according to police.

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Charles de Gaulle has stopped all incoming and outgoing planes, while flights from Orly are delayed for at least 90 minutes.

Some of the heaviest snow for years descended on the French capital Wednesday afternoon, causing traffic chaos as the temperature plummeted.

"Only some bus lines in the north-west, the south, and the south-west continue to function partially," out of the 350 lines normally running, according to the public bus service RATP.

Sytadin

Access to Versailles, outside Paris, is very difficult due to snow-covered traffic jams, while three parks around Paris - La Courneuve, Bagnolet and Neuilly-sur-Marne - have been closed for security reasons.

The traffic warning system has called on all car drivers to exercise "extreme caution" if they must drive on the snow and icy conditions.

Some 27 regions of France have been placed on orange alert due to snow and ice.

Meteorologists report that the snowstorm has touched the centre of the country, with many areas dipping below zero.

But the south-west of the country is a striking exception. It is reported to be sunny and up to 20°C.

In Bart in the eastern Doubs region, 100 people were evacuated on Tuesday after their area was deemed "at risk". In Bavan, two retirement homes were evacuated for the same reason.

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