Thousands of people have been stranded on icy roads as heavy snowfall in northern Iran has blocked all roads, from highways to rural dirt trail.
The heavy storm has killed 8, injured 145 and as many as 80 have been reported missing. Power, water and natural gas supplies have been cut off in many places.
It’s been already four days since the storm, but thousands of people are still without water and electricity.
At least eight people have been killed and 145 more injured in the snow-hit province of Gilan.
Many rural roads are still blocked and over 250,000 people are suffering from a power outage. Because I you can imagine… It’s freezing over there and people can’t heat.
It’s a snow disaster! Heavy snowfall hit 50 out of 52 cities of the province and many areas were buried in 40 inches (1 meter) to 80 inches (2 meters) of snow in less than 24 hours.
And that during the celebrations of the 1979 Islamic revolution’s anniversary. Can you imagine?
The storm also disrupted power, natural gas and water supplies, as well as internet and telecommunication services across the province.
Some old people had to be freed from their homes.
Northern Iran is cut off by snow & a number of people are dead and as many as 80 missing.— Iran Momentum (@IranMomentum) February 13, 2020
With no crisis management in place by the officials, people been left to fend for themselves.
In this video neighbours visiting this old man who is stranded by snow.?#41YearsOfMisery pic.twitter.com/876Z1DB9X7
Just in the town of Rasht where more than 700,000 live, the storm had left nearly 100,000 homes and businesses without power, telephone and mobile communications.
Samaneh Ekvan wrote in a tweet that people did not trust weather forecast for this week, as they thought the government wanted to prevent them from travelling around in order to keep city streets busy during the celebrations.
از اول هفته پلیس راهور داره اعلام میکنه نرید مسافرت، توی برف می مونید. منتها بعضی ها فکر میکردند به خاطر ۲۲ بهمن این حرف را زده و زدند به جاده . مصداق بارز این ضرب المثل شدهایم که میگوید وقتی که عقل نیست جان در عذاب است. حداقل اپلیکیشن هواشناسی را نگاه می کردید.— Samaneh Ekvan ثمانه اکوان (@ekvanjournalist) February 11, 2020
As of Wednesday, thousands of people were reportedly stranded on the roads leading to the province.
Videos show passengers on the road from Tehran to Rasht abandoning their cars and walking to their destination.
The snowstorm was forecasted days ago, but the urban and government officials did not respond to the warning and took no necessary preventive measures.
Reza Kashef blamed crisis management officials for not taking the warnings issued by other parts of the government seriously.
از یک هفته قبل هشدار #سازمان_هواشناسی درباره برف غرب ایران و بخصوص #برف_گیلان صادر شده بود. چرا اعزام ماشینآلات راهسازی و برفروبی از استانهای همجوار در برنامه نبود؟آیا نباید آموزش عمومی درباره برفروبی پیش از انباشت آن انجام میشد؟— RezaKashef (@rekashef) February 12, 2020
?بحران مدیریت در سازمان مدیریت بحران کشور
More than 250 kilometers (155 miles) to the west of Rasht, the province of Ardebil has also been hit by heavy snowfall. Rescue teams have already been deployed and helped up to 800 villages in Ardebil. Meanwhile, thousands of people in at least 400 villages are cut from the world as rural roads are still blocked in large part of the province.
Parts of Khuzestan including Susa (Shusha), have experienced the first snowfall in written history, where some 130 villages have been cut off from the rest of the country.
Again, this powerful snowstorm hit Iran during the celebrations of the 1979 Islamic revolution’s anniversary. So you understand that officials didn’t care at all about those poor guys freezing in the dark. For the Islamic Republic Minister of Energy this last snow storm was unprecedented and much more extreme than the previous record in 2004.