Roads in Golan, Northern Galilee Opened to Traffic

Most of the roads on the Golan Heights and in the northern Galilee have been opened to traffic Sunday after Public Works Department workers cleared the roads of the heavy snows which piled up during Saturday's storm.

Police officials said Sunday that the only road still closed was the road from Nahal Sa'ar intersection to Majdal Shams and Mount Hermon in the northern Golan Heights.

Snow began falling again Sunday on the Golan Heights, and the roads on the northern part of the plateau were expected to be closed again later in the day.

All of the roads in Jerusalem have been cleared of snow, as well as the roads leading to and from the capital. Public transport resumed full operation in the city in the morning hours, and transportation to and from the capital is also fully operational.

Snow continued to fall overnight Saturday in parts of the country, resulting in the shutting of schools Sunday in Jerusalem, the Gush Etzion settlement bloc south of the capital, Safed, the northern Golan Heights and in settlements in the northern West Bank.

Snow was expected to continue falling in the capital until afternoon. Some nine centimeters of snow were measured in Zion Square, compared with 30 centimeters during the only snowfall last year.

Director-General of the Education Ministry Ronit Tirosh criticized the decision by Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski, made already on Saturday night, to shut the schools. Tirosh said it would have been preferable to await instructions from the Education Ministry's situation room and make its decision Sunday morning.

Snow began falling in the early hours of Saturday morning on Mount Hermon and throughout the Golan Heights, as well as on the Galilee mountains, and spread to Jerusalem by the afternoon.

Mount Hermon was closed to visitors Saturday. Many cars were stuck in the snowstorm in the Golan and the police asked people to keep away from the area. The Hermon ski facilities closed to the public after 25 centimeters of snow fell on the mountain in the space of a few hours.

The water level in Lake Kinneret has gone up by seven centimeters since Thursday. The water level is now 77 centimeters short of the lake's maximum capacity.

Ministry of Education hotline: 12 12 222 666