Georgian Government takes measures as unusual freeze continues

All Georgian relevant state bodies are on alert to cope with the negative consequences caused by heavy snowfall and freeze. Photo by N. Alavidze/, 05 Jan 2016 - 15:15, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia is intensifying its efforts to cope with the negative consequences caused by heavy snowfall and freeze throughout the country.

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili has instructed head of the Government Administration’s Department of Relations with Regions and Local Self-governing Bodies, Giorgi Amashukeli to arrive in western Georgia - the area that was most affected by the bad weather conditions – and monitor the work that was underway.

Georgia’s Minister of Infrastructure Nodar Javakhishvili and Deputy Energy Minister Ilia Eloshvili were also in western Georgia to check on the restoring works.

Central city roads in western Georgia's Samegrelo region being cleaned by relevant state services. Photo by the Road Department. 

Late last night, Kvirikashvili was briefed by officials of various state agencies about what actions were being taken to fight the negative consequences of the bad weather. The meeting was attended by representatives of the State Security and Crisis Management Council too.

Four western regions – Imereti, Samegrelo, Guria and Adjara were most affected by heavy snowfall.

In Imereti, 8 000 families left with no electricity after snow damaged the infrastructure. Officials said the works to restore electricity supply was underway and would be finished by the end of the day.

Meanwhile in Guria, a thick cover of snow broke off the roofs of several houses, leaving the families without shelter.

Snow caused problems on roads too. The Road Department announced movement restrictions on several sections.

Cleaning of central roads in western Georgia's Imereti region. Photo by the Road Department. 

Due to heavy snowfall, storm and low visibility all kind of movement was forbidden at three locations in eastern and southern Georgia:

  • The 90-112km section of the Akhaltsikhe-Ninotsminda road (near the border with Armenia);
  • The 20-30km section of the Akhalkalaki-Kartsakhi Road (near the Border with Turkey);
  • The 110-146km section of the Koda-Partskhisi-Manglisi-Tsalka-Ninotsminda road (the road section between Rodionovna and Ninotsminda in southern Georgia).

Meanwhile, almost all of the country’s main roads were already cleaned and the major restrictions were removed. The Rikoti Pass - dividing Georgia into western and eastern parts - was also open to all kind of vehicles.

Minor restrictions were currently in place on several road sections only for trailer trucks and semi-trailer trucks. Read details here.

Georgia's National Environmental Agency said frost would weaken tonight and in the coming days. 

Check the forecast here.