BERLIN, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- Continuous heavy snowfall is causing traffic chaos, closed schools and a high risk of avalanches in many southern parts of Germany on Thursday.
Ongoing snowfall and icy roads have led to a complete standstill over a distance of 35 kilometers on the highway A8 in Baden-Wurttemberg that lasted until early Thursday.
Hundreds of truck and car drivers were forced to spend the night on the road. A police spokeswoman said that slipped trucks on the snow-covered road had blocked the highway.
Police officers, rescue services, the Federal Agency for Technical Relief and the German highway maintenance department were deployed to clear the highway and distributed blankets and hot drinks to people stuck on the road.
Numerous train routes in southern German states, especially near the Alps, are blocked and trains are completely covered by snow. Passengers will have to prepare for further disruptions and cancellations, a railway spokesperson of the regional Bavarian train operator BOB confirmed on Thursday.
Since Wednesday, the second highest avalanche warning level is in effect in the Bavarian Alps and many schools remain closed for safety reasons although parents of pupils at primary and secondary schools are allowed to send their children to school.