Level 4 (the second-highest level on a five-tier scale) avalanche and heavy snow warnings are in effect in several mountainous regions of Austria and Germany as of Thursday, January 10. According to local affiliates of the European Avalanche Warning Services (EAWS), the areas affected by the warnings include the Austrian states of Lower Austria, Salzburg, Styria, Tyrol, Upper Austria, Vienna, and Vorarlberg, as well as the southern areas of Bavaria in Germany. Consequent transportation disruptions are possible in the affected area in the coming days.
At 16 people have been killed in Austria and Germany as of January 10, after a winter storm hit on Saturday, January 5. In Germany, one person was killed in Wackersberg (Bavaria) and another in the Teisenberg Mountains (Berchtesgaden region). At least five people died in an avalanche in the western Austrian Alps. Avalanches were also reported in the Vorarlberg Mountains, and near Salzburg.
Individuals present in affected areas are advised to monitor local weather reports and updates from the European Avalanche Warning Services (EAWS), confirm travel reservations, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities (e.g. evacuation or shelter-in-place orders).