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spain snow storm

At least 220 people have been rescued after being trapped by snow on roads in northern Spain.

Hundreds of cars were stuck for up to 17 hours overnight on roads between Cantabria and the province of Palencia.

Local media report temperatures of -15C (5F) and up 40cm (1.3ft) of snow.

Spanish police rescued several stranded in their vehicles shortly after arrival in Santander by ferry from Portsmouth.

Many tourists had come to Spain hoping for a warm-weather holiday, but ended up having to spend the night in the sports hall of a local school and the dining room of a hotel.Snow storm Spain 2015

Spain is in the middle of a cold spell that is expected to worsen over the next three days, with cold weather alerts issued for 20 provinces.

Its national weather service said in a statement that the unusually cold temperatures would last until February 10.

A large area of central Spain has seen an unusually high amount of snowfall in recent days.

Abandoned cars and overturned trucks have piled up on main roads near Santander.

Spanish police said that dozens of military vehicles and snow ploughs are being used to clear the area.

Local media said that many schools in northern Spain had been closed and that there had been numerous power cuts.

El Pais newspaper reports that at least four towns in the region of Cantabria were still without power on February 5.

Meanwhile, in Catalonia, winds of over 75mph have disrupted railway services.

Snowfall has also closed roads as far south as in Andalucia.

The freezing conditions are set to continue for several days, with the coldest temperatures expected on February 6 and 7, warned the national weather service.

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