As Cold Snap Bites, Jerusalem Bracing for Snow

The current weather front is only predicted to weaken on Saturday.

The cold and rain and snow that have gripped various parts of the country will persist over the next two days, and tomorrow is expected to be the coldest day of the year, with a possible accumulation of snow in Jerusalem. Yesterday the capital saw sleet that did not settle on the ground. The current weather front is only predicted to weaken on Saturday.

It rained yesterday from the northern Golan Heights to the Negev mountains in the south. Snow fell on Mount Hermon and at high elevations in the Golan Heights and the Galilee, as well as in the central mountains. In some locations, the winds exceeded 100 kilometers per hour.

A tree swaying on the Jaffa coast - Alon Ron - February 29, 2012
Alon Ron

A 70-year-old man in Netanya was lightly injured yesterday when he was struck in the head by a glass door that was blown off its hinges. Elsewhere in the city, on Yehuda Halevi Street, a tree fell on a car but caused no bodily injuries.

In Tel Aviv on King George Street, traffic was disrupted when a large tree fell onto power lines and into the street. It also ripped a bench out of the ground. Traffic lights and traffic signs were blown down around the city. In south Tel Aviv's Levinsky Park, the city erected a new tent to provide shelter for the homeless.

Aviation traffic was also disrupted yesterday. A Dutch KLM jet scheduled to land at Ben-Gurion International Airport was required to land in Cyprus instead due to the extreme weather here. The Israel Airports Authority went on a state of alert for other possible disruptions in airplane traffic.

Safed saw 40 millimeters of rain and Jerusalem had a similar amount, according to the Meteo-Tech meteorology firm, while Netanya had 30 millimeters of rain. The Mediterranean was particularly rough, with waves of up to nine meters.

The level of Lake Kinneret rose 3 centimeters over the past two days. Air pollution levels in the south were higher than average.

Today will continue to be cold and wet, with strong winds and possible flooding. Tomorrow the mercury is forecast to dip to zero Celsius in Jerusalem, 32 degrees Fahrenheit.