Source: Shanghai Daily | 2012-11-12 | ONLINE EDITION
HIGHWAYS and schools have been forced to close in northeast China's Heilongjiang and Jilin provinces due to heavy snow and sleet.
Snowstorms have caused the closure of at least two highways in Heilongjiang. One links Harbin, capital of the province, and Tongjiang City, with the other highway linking Hegang and Jiamusi cities. Both closures have left many coaches and passengers stranded.
The snowstorms have prompted Heilongjiang's weather authorities to issue an "orange alert" -- the second highest of four weather warning levels, in Hegang and Jiamusi.
Snowfall of more than 10 millimeters is expected in Hegang and Jiamusi in the next six hours.
Traffic authorities of Harbin have warned that more coaches will be stranded as more snowstorms are expected.
Flights and railway services in the city, which is forecast to receive snowfall of four millimeters in the next 12 hours, had not been affected as of this morning.
In Jilin, where heavy snow fell late yesterday, traffic authorities have temporarily imposed traffic control measures, as frozen roads posed a potential danger to vehicles.
Flights have not been affected in Changchun, capital of Jilin, with no reports of travelers being stranded by the snow at Changchun Longjia Airport.
Education authorities in Jilin urged schools and kindergartens in mountainous and semi-mountainous areas of the province to stop classes as the snowstorms continued.
In an emergency notice issued today, Jilin Provincial Education Department asked primary and middle schools as well as kindergartens in flat areas to stop or reschedule classes according to weather conditions.
According to the latest weather forecast released by Jilin Provincial Meteorological Observatory, the province will receive more snowfall in the next 24 hours. Heavy snowstorms are expected in cities across Jilin, including Changchun, Jilin and Songyuan.