The Iran Project

Relief operation underway on Iranian road shut by heavy snowfall

Press TV – Iranian authorities say rescue teams have been dispatched to a key road north of the country where heavy snowfall has stranded thousands of people.

An official in Iran’s road transportation organization said that all passenger vehicles trapped on the Qazvin-Rasht Highway due to a traffic jam caused by snow will be helped to move from the road by late night on Tuesday.

Heidar Mataei said that the traffic standstill on the highway stretching for about 10 kilometers had taken place mainly because some cars and trucks had not heeded warnings that they should not travel without tire chains. The official did not elaborate on any injuries or illness among those stuck on the road.

Earlier reports in the Iranian media suggested that the late-winter snowfall and strong winds had dumped one meter of snow on the northernmost parts of the road near Rasht, which is the capital of the northern Gilan province.

Others said the storm had left nearly 100,000 homes and businesses in Rasht, a city of more than 700,000 people, without power while causing outages in telephone and mobile communications.

Iran’s telecoms minister said in a tweet that technicians from four neighboring provinces were in Gilan to try to restore the network. Mohammad Javad Azari said part of the mobile and land lines affected by the snow in nine provincial counties will be connected by late Tuesday.

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