Hundreds of flights from Istanbul airports and city ferry lines have been canceled and delayed due to heavy snowfall in what Istanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş described as the heaviest snow in seven years.
Turkish Airlines announced the cancelation of 227 scheduled domestic and international flights from its hub Atatürk Airport and Sabiha Gökçen Airport on the Asian side and low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines canceled a total of 74 domestic and international flights on January 9.
Turkish Airlines had already canceled more than 600 domestic and international flights from Istanbul and Pegasus Airlines had canceled 228 flights over the past three days.
Istanbul’s Bosphorus strait and the Dardanelles strait further south are closing and then opening frequently to transit shipping as the visibility lessens and improves.
About 6,000 of Turkish Airlines passengers were transferred to hotels on Friday evening due to the cancellations and 20,000 meals were distributed to those stranded at the airport.
Meteorological officials said they expected snowfall to continue sporadically through Jan. 11, especially in the afternoon hours to the night, creating an additional snow sheet of five centimeters on the southern shores and around 15 centimeters in the central and northern areas.
Source: Hurriyet, AA