According to The German Weather Service, heavy snowfall was noticed across the country, with some places expecting as much as 30 centimetres over the next 24 hours, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
Frankfurt airport is currently impacted the most, as it has announced significant delays and flight cancellations. As Euronews reports, 570 of the 1,047 scheduled arrivals and departures were cancelled. In addition, more than 300 of the 1,000 flights scheduled for Thursday have been forced to postpone their departure.
Due to the forecasted weather conditions, flight disruptions and cancellations will occur on January 17 at Frankfurt Airport. Weather-related flight disruptions are also expected for January 18.
Travellers are advised to check their flight status before coming to the airport and check if their flights are cancelled. With 254 flights grounded, Munich airport is also affected by the current poor weather conditions in Germany.
Airports in other regions of Germany, including the Saarbruecken airport, were closed on January 17, while Dusseldorf and Cologne/Bonn airports also reported delays and cancellations.
The German Weather Service has raised weather warnings for some areas to level four, which indicates ‘extremely severe’ weather conditions.
In addition, Frankfurt airport had issued warnings of black ice, which built up on runways can risk accidents.
While ice risks landing aeroplanes, pilots have also encountered problems when in the air, as freezing rain can impact aircraft wings and destabilise the plane.
Lufthansa airline, which is based at Frankfurt and Munich airports, both the most affected airports, is expected to be affected the most by the poor weather, causing thousands of flights to be cancelled.
The company is asking passengers to check the status of their flights and avoid going to the airport in case their flight is cancelled.
The extreme weather conditions in Germany did not impact only the air traffic but rail, as well. The German state rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) has also announced that delays and cancellations can occur due to the freezing conditions.
The company suspended several long-distance connections and limited the maximum speed for its high-speed ICE trains to 200 kilometres per hour on Wednesday in an effort to prevent any accidents. The same weather is expected to persist in the upcoming days, especially Thursday.
With the uncertain weather conditions in Europe, it is recommended to purchase travel insurance – an insurance coverage designed to provide financial protection and assistance to individuals while they are travelling.
By purchasing travel insurance, travellers can get coverage in case of trip cancellation or interruption, medical emergencies, trip delays, as well as lost or delayed baggage. Emergency evacuation is also another benefit that those who have travel insurance can enjoy.