Winter Olympics: China issues blizzard alert in first Beijing snowfall of 2022 Games

Workers clear snow off the women's downhill course at the Yanqing National Alpine Skiing Centre, in Beijing, on Feb 13, 2022. PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING (REUTERS) - The China Meterological Administration issued a blizzard warning for Sunday (Feb 13), saying significant snowfall is expected in large parts of northern China including Beijing, the capital and venue of the Winter Olympics.

The weekend snowfall, which had already begun in some areas on Saturday (Feb 12), is the capital's first since the Winter Olympics opened on Feb 4, government notices showed.

The women's freeski slopestyle qualification in Zhangjiakou, featuring Team China gold medalist Eileen Gu, was rescheduled to Monday (Feb 14) due to the snow, a notice on the Beijing 2022 official Olympic website said.

The authorities issued a blue blizzard warning, the lowest of the country's four-tiered alerts, with some regions forecast to receive up to 4cm of snow. They advised the public to cut back on unnecessary outdoor activities.

"It is expected that there will be heavy snow in parts of central and southern Inner Mongolia, northern Shanxi, central and northern Hebei, northern Beijing, southern Tianjin, eastern and southern Liaoning, and Xinjiang along the Tianshan Mountains today," the China Meterological Administration notice said.

Beijing temperatures dropped, with the Beijing Meteorological Observatory forecasting a minimum temperature of -6 deg C.

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