Residents in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki have voiced their discontent over the government’s decision to suspend public transport services and partly close roads following a recent bout of heavy snowfall.
Thessaloniki is among many parts of Greece that has been hit by an extreme cold snap and sustained snowfall due to a low-pressure weather system named “Sophia”.
Bus services were suspended and several city roads were closed by the government due to icy road conditions. Many residents are unhappy over the inconvenience caused by the disruption and the authorities’ poor response to the inclement weather.
A resident named Despina pointed her finger at the city’s public transport sector. She said the public already knew bad weather was forecast a week ago and believes that local authorities should have been better prepared to allow vital bus services to run as normal.
Others suggested the government should have taken better precautions to prepare for the winter weather and should have been capable of cleared away the snow in time to make ensure minimal traffic disruption.
“The government didn’t act in an orderly and organized way to clean the roads and make the roads suitable for traffic. I come from the suburb of a nearby city where we usually deal with such problems. Thessaloniki should learn and take similar measures, instead of letting bus services stop and closing the roads. Only the taxis are operating, but they are running at full capacity. So it won’t solve the problems,” said a local named Vaso.
The cold front which has been battering Greece in the first days of the new year has left three people dead. Greece’s national weather service have also warned that a new low pressure weather system was due to hit the country on Monday evening.