Unseasonable weather hits the Czech Republic
It's the middle of the winter but the Czech Republic is unseasonally warm. Prague's meteorological institute recorded record highs this week - Tuesday's temperature of 14.9 degrees Celsius in Prague was 4 degrees higher than the all-time record high for the 29th of January. The unusually warm weather has continued and on Wednesday 100 year old temperature records were shattered across the country. Radio Prague's Nicole Klement reports.
This week's unusually warm weather, which is expected to continue into the weekend, has been enthusiastically welcomed. People are leaving their winter coats at home and bringing out their sunglasses. Though the sunshine is appreciated, the warm weather isn't all good news. The heavy snow falls last month are starting to melt and river levels have risen, putting several regions on flood alert.
Three rivers have already burst their banks, including the Elbe, which has flooded the main road between Prague and Decin - and since Monday ship transport on the river, near the Czech German border, has been suspended.
At the moment, though, flooding isn't the biggest worry. High winds have caused the most damage. Gale force winds have wreaked havoc in many parts of Europe, and in the Czech Republic winds of over a hundred kilometres per hour have caused damage to property and claimed one life.
But to end on a happier note - the summer weather has brought the Black bears at Prague zoo out of hibernation- but only for a sneak preview. The zoo's spokesperson says that the well rested bears awoke for a bask in the sun but despite the warm weather realised it was still winter and went back to bed.