January 7, 2009 / 12:08 PM / 10 years ago

Northern Italy shuts aiports due to heavy snowfall

MILAN, Jan 7 (Reuters) - Heavy snowfall forced northern Italy to close briefly its major airports on Wednesday, including Malpensa outside Milan.

Up to 40 cm of snow has fallen across northern Italy since Tuesday, slowing people’s return from holidays.

“Things are not expected to improve until Friday,” a civil defence spokesman said.

Milan’s Linate city airport put a halt to flights until early afternoon, as did Orio al Serio in nearby Bergamo and Caselle in Turin.

Although highways were mostly clear, traffic in some parts of Milan was snarled due to trees that had fallen under the weight of the snow, the regional emergency authority said. (Reporting by Roberto Bonzio; writing by Gilles Castonguay)

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