Floods in Albania; heavy snow, strong winds in Croatia, Slovenia

Floods have forced hundreds of people from their homes in Albania, while heavy snow and strong winds caused traffic havoc Friday in Croatia and Slovenia.

A 38-year old woman drowned in Albania after she was swept away from the yard of her home by floodwaters near Pogradec, 120 kilometres (75 miles) east of the capital Tirana, police spokeswoman Esmerina Gurishta said Friday.

Some 600 families have been evacuated in four southern districts in Albania after flooding covered more than 17,000 hectares (42,000 acres) and killed about 3,500 sheep and cows, authorities said. Police, army and a unit from neighbouring Kosovo have been helping emergency service workers.

Travel throughout Croatia was snarled Friday following a massive all-night snowfall. Trucks have been banned from all roads connecting Croatia’s mainland with the Adriatic coast, where strong winds have disrupted ferry lines.

In Slovenia, dozens of schools have closed down and most border crossings have banned entry for trucks to prevent pileups. Still, several trucks slid off a highway in the southeast, temporarily blocking traffic and sending road emergency crews to the scene.

Slovenia’s Adriatic port of Koper closed down because of gale winds, along with sections of the motorway connecting the coast with the capital of Ljubljana.