February 2, 2023
A blizzard will hit the front of the war in Ukraine

A blizzard will hit the front of the war in Ukraine

Russian Defense Ministry / AFP / Meteorological Metsol

The area that focused the main fighting of the war in Ukraine will be hit by a snow storm. The conflict front zone in eastern Ukraine will experience conditions of reduced visibility, very difficult road traffic and extensive snowpacks up to 15 cm in height. Although it has snowed in the area in recent days, the rainfall has been light and this will be the first heavy snowfall since the outbreak of the war a week ago.

Heavy snow will move into Ukraine on Thursday as a region of low pressure moves north of the Black Sea and along Ukraine’s eastern border with Russia in the Donbass region, causing the biggest snowfall ever, on Thursday and Friday.

The forecast is for periods of heavy snowfall at times with worst conditions expected for Thursday and Friday, with less intense rain continuing on Saturday. Major cities affected include the separatist Donetsk and Luhansk, as well as Kharkiv, which is Ukraine’s second largest, is close to the Russian border, has a population similar to Porto Alegre, and has been the target of constant Russian bombing.

Snow can accumulate at points in these cities by more than 20 cm between tomorrow and Saturday. In addition to snow, winds will also increase as the storm system passes. Widespread winds of 50 km/h will be felt across the region over the next three days with higher speeds in some areas, which will contribute to increased snow accumulation in urban areas.

Cloud cover will also remain dense in most parts of the country for at least three days as a result of the weather system. Temperatures will remain low, around 0°C over the weekend, with cooler air likely to enter next week after the snowstorm.

The snow storm is expected to mainly affect the military air operations in the country. Russia has yet to achieve air dominance in Ukraine despite its very superior firepower as Ukrainian forces continue to fight the Russian invasion.

Heavy snowfall with poor visibility will affect Russian efforts to advance into Ukrainian cities, some of which are already trapped. The US also says the Russians are facing fuel and food shortages at the front, and that the cold will make it more difficult to place Moscow’s fighters parked on highways in military convoys.