Snow fell overnight and is still falling in Jerusalem, the Hevron hills, Samaria and much of the north. School has been cancelled in Tzfat, Samaria, and Gush Etzion. Schools opened in the Shilo bloc of the Binyamin region but shortly after 8:00, the Binyamin Regional Council announced that schools would disband at 9:00 a.m.
School was announced as on in Jerusalem, where municipal authorities were more than prepared for snowfall. The city had 50 snow plows and 40 tons of salt on hand to get roads cleared. However, not very many parents allowed their children to travel or walk to school, as the snow is still falling in mid-morning and Israeli drivers do not have snow tires and are inexperienced in driving through snow.
School or no school, Israel's children lucky enough to live in the storm area are out in full force near their homes, throwing snowballs and building snowmen while the powdery white stuff lasts. Ethiopian immigrants have never, for the most part, seen snow - the Russians, however, don't understand how people can get excited about 4 inches of snow - and lots of Israelis in the rest of the country are trying to figure out a way to get to see the snow. For some, it will also be for the first time in their lives.
The snowy roads in Judea and Samaria led Egged to cancel some bus lines as well. The 170 bus from Jerusalem to Beit El, the 179 from Jerusalem to Psagot were grounded, as were the 148 to Ariel and the 143 to Tal Zion.
Roads have been closed in Gush Etzion, and in Kiryat Arba-Hevron, where the snow has reached a height of 4 inches so far. Local stores remain open, and have for sale food products for the Sabbath that were brought in before the storm. The Golan Heights are blanketed in snow.
Video - Snow in Hevron, filmed by David Wilder:
Weather forecasters predict that snowfall will continue Friday in Jerusalem, the north, and hilly regions throughout the country, including the Negev. Elsewhere, there will be rain and strong wind.
On the Sabbath light local rainfall is expected, coupled with cold weather and cloudy skies.
Arutz Sheva reminds drivers that it can be dangerous to drive in snow, especially when there may be ice patches underneath it.
Photos and Video: KuvienImages.com