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In Pictures: Icy weather hits central Europe
Much of the region has been hit by a combination of sub-zero temperatures and freezing rain.
Germany, Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic have all been affected by frost and ice in recent days.
3 Dec 2014
The blanket of ice was not solely due to sub-zero air temperatures. [EPA]
Freezing rain was responsible for widespread disruption in many areas. [EPA]
Freezing rain is one of the most dangerous and disruptive types of weather. It produces a clear glaze on any surface it comes into contact with. [EPA]
It can build up on trees and power lines to such an extent that they may be brought down by the weight of ice. [EPA]
It usually occurs as snow, high up in the atmosphere, falls through a warmer layer of air near the surface. This causes the snow to melt, turning it to water droplets. These droplets then pass though sub-zero air close the ground. These droplets are supercooled and freeze on contact. [EPA]
The cold weather extends into Russia where temperatures of Minus 18C on the Yenisei River marked the end of the sailing season.
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