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Cold weather and icy conditions to continue until the weekend
A zone of dry arctic air will determine the weather over the next few days with cold nights and little chance of a thaw in the Ardennes before Sunday, reports RTBF.
Belgium’s weather centre (Royal Meteorological Institution) advises motorists to exercise extreme caution on roads.
There were clear blue skies over most parts of the country on Thursday, with temperatures dropping sharply between -4°C and -16°C. Sunshine continued over the southern part of the country with central and northern regions experiencing temperatures around 1°C and 6°C, while higher altitudes stayed below freezing.
Friday will see similar same wintery conditions with an area of low pressure over the centre and south of Belgium. Other regions should have comparatively clearer weather. Temperatures will struggle to rise above 0°C in areas between Namur and Limburg.
It’ll be a cold start to the day on Saturday with some occasional icy fog and chilly temperatures with cold winds coming off the sea. It should get warmer, though, as some sunshine is expected to break through clouds in the afternoon.
Sunday is finally when there will be some change to the current arctic weather pattern. Lower pressure accompanied by milder air will arrive from France around midday. Some occasional snow and icy showers will later give way to rain in all parts of the country with milder temperatures between 3°C and 5°C.
Next week is starting to look warmer with temperatures between 8°C and 11°C accompanied by windier and wetter conditions.
Downhill ski slope open in the Ardennes
The cold snap has led to the first opening in the season of downhill ski slopes in Belgium. Ovifat ski station in Liège province is currently welcoming visitors and expects to remain open until Sunday evening.
Snow canons were in action, spreading some 30cm of powdery snow around the blue slope. The toboggan run is also accessible, although it’s covered with less snow.
Firemen rescue swan from frozen pond in Brussels
A Brussels fire crew was called out to Rue des Pecheries in Watermael-Boitsfort on Thursday morning to free a swan stuck in ice in a pond. Divers from the fire service carried out the rescue of the waterfowl before transporting it to the Ligue Royale Belge pour la Protection des Oiseaux.
Photos: Royal Meteorological Institute; Brussels Fire Service