By tomorrow morning, Jerusalemites could be waking up to see snow on the ground, with 5 to 10 centimeters of it throughout the day, says The Israel Meteorological Service
After days of anticipation, the season’s first snowfall finally began in Jerusalem late Monday, as authorities readied for action in case of dangerous road conditions or power outages.
Though temperatures in the daytime were still too warm for snow to accumulate, the Israel Meteorological Service (IMS) said that as temperatures dropped to minus 1 degree centigrade overnight, snow would probably begin to stick by the time Jerusalemites awoke in the morning. The service said that if low temperatures and precipitation continued, snow could blanket the capital to a depth of 5 to 10 centimeters.
The National Traffic Police announced Monday night that due to poor road conditions, it had decided to briefly close Route 443 in both directions between Jerusalem and Modi’in. It was reopened about an hour later, recalling police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld’s earlier announcement that highways to and from the capital would be promptly closed to traffic if there was a safety threat caused by the weather.
“Police have made preparations for the possibility of a heavy snowfall in Jerusalem, and various steps have been coordinated with the Jerusalem Municipality and rescue services – including dozens of 4×4 vehicles that can be quickly dispatched – if Route 1 or Route 443 are closed,” he said. “Extra emergency vehicles are also on standby, including Magen David Adom ambulances, to rescue drivers should they be stuck on roads in and around Jerusalem.”
Meanwhile, the Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) has preemptively reinforced power supplies and deployed extra employees to the capital in anticipation of heightened power needs and possible electrical breakdowns.