As a weekend of snowstorms prepares to grip Istanbul, a total of 395 flights have already been cancelled at Istanbul's Ataturk and Sabiha Gokchen Airports, affecting many passengers' weekend plans, Daily Sabah reported.
Snow crews at the airports have started to clear the runway and roads, and will continue their operations during the weekend to avoid flight delays, the General Directorate of State Airports Authority (DHM?) said.
Sabiha Gökçen Airport officials also made a statement, saying that 15 percent of the flights scheduled daily at the airport would be cancelled on Saturday and Sunday due to heavy snowfall and storms. The passengers were advised to monitor their flights on the airlines' official websites.
Meteorology experts warned that snow as thick as 20 centimeters would blanket the city while authorities warned against icy roads and urged citizens to be on alert against collapsing of roofs of buildings not strong enough to withstand the heavy snowfall.
The state-run General Directorate of Meteorology warned against "an extreme cold wave" in western and central Turkey, cautioning against a cold wave hailing from the Balkans. On Saturday, temperatures below 10 degrees are expected in western, northern and central Turkey. Temperatures will remain below 10 and sometimes 15 degrees at least until next midweek.