Rare snowstorm delays, diverts flights in Prague

  • Race officials dismantle the course after an alpine ski, men’s World Cup giant slalom was canceled due to weather conditions, in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Tacca)

  • Race officials dismantle the course after an alpine ski, men’s World Cup giant slalom was canceled due to weather conditions, in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Tacca)

GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany — A rare snowstorm accompanied by flashes of lightning in Prague has caused on roads and at the Czech capital’s international airport.

At least five flights to Prague’ Vaclav Havel Airport were diverted to the Czech Republic’s second-largest city, Brno, or to Vienna in neighboring Austria on Sunday. Other flights are being delayed.

Authorities say public transportation in Prague also has been affected. Service on some bus lines has been suspended.

Some parts of the country had received up to one foot of snow by Sunday morning and fallen trees closed several train tracks.

At least 33,000 households were without electricity around Sunday noon.

Meteorologists say the snow is expected to continue for the rest of the day.

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11:15 a.m.

Heavy snow in Germany has forced organizers to cancel the last World Cup skiing race before the world championships.

Organizers on Sunday called off a men’s giant slalom at Garmisch-Partenkirchen a day after they also had to cancel a downhill for the same reason.

Course workers started at 4 a.m. but failed to clear up to 30 centimeters (12 inches) of fresh snow from the Kandahar course because it kept snowing during the morning.

FIS race director Markus Waldner said efforts had to be stopped as “we started to damage the race line with the machines.”

Skiing’s governing body was looking to reschedule both races after the Feb. 5-17 world championships, which begin Tuesday in Are, Sweden.

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