Photo Credit: Ben Kelmer / Flash 90
Israeli palm trees in high winds as a storm hits Tel Aviv. (file)

Residents of the Jewish State are bracing for the blustery winter storm ‘Barbara’ that is making its way across the eastern Mediterranean from Greece towards Israel.

Barbara was formed as the result of a high pressure front over Europe that extended from northwestern Africa to Scandinavia, combined with low pressure in the east and southeastern sections of Europe.


The storm is forecast to arrive in Israel by Monday, bringing strong winds, driving rain, hail in some places and snow in the north.

Barbara is expected to begin in the north – as do most winter storms in Israel – and then gradually make its way south. Temperatures will plummet and heavy snow is expected on Mount Hermon, where the ski resort has announced it will remain closed until the storm passes.

Despite forecasters’ warnings, Jerusalem is not expected to see significant snowfall – if any at all. Nevertheless, winds could whip up to 100 kilometers an hour (62 miles per hour) at the peak of the storm.

But the coldest day of the storm is not expected to hit until Tuesday, when temperatures are expected to drop to their lowest numbers so far this season.

Super-low temperatures, frost and heavy snowfall dropped on Athens and elsewhere in Greece on Sunday, where drivers were told to equip vehicles with snow chains in the Attica prefecture. Heavy trucks of more than 3.5 tons were banned from several highways there as well.

Ships were told not to sail out of the ports of Piraeus, Lavrio and Rafina due to the gale force winds.

The storm was expected to last throughout Greece until Tuesday.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.