Northern China facing blizzard conditions

Nov. 3, 2012 at 1:59 PM

BEIJING, Nov. 3 (UPI) -- A cold front in northern China is expected to bring blizzards to the capital Beijing and other parts of northern China, Chinese forecasters said Saturday.

Rain was falling in Beijing early Saturday but the precipitation was expected to change to snow and sleet Sunday, China's official Xinhua news agency reported.

Winds of as much as 25 mph will whip the city, the National Meteorological Center predicted.

Temperatures in areas outside Beijing were forecast to drop as low as 9 degrees Fahrenheit.

The regional Hebei Meteorological Observatory has issued snow, rain and cold current alerts.

The national weather center said heavy snow is expected in the mountainous areas in western Beijing, Inner Mongolia, and the provinces of Hebei and Shanxi.

NMC said temperatures could fall 18 degrees Fahrenheit in Inner Mongolia, the region around Beijing and 10 other provinces.

Officials in Inner Mongolia have reported several traffic collisions in the region attributed to the weather. Flights at Hohhot Baita Airport have not been affected so far.

Officials in Shanxi Province said they have stored 2,100 metric tons of snow-melting chemicals in the event of a large snowfall.

The snow and rain are expected to end Monday, with temperatures rising to as high as 50 degrees.

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