Homeless woman gives birth outside as temperatures plunge to -15C in Germany

Police found mother and baby sheltering in a sleeping bag on top of a ventilation grate in Nuremberg

Matt Mathers
Friday 12 February 2021 11:36 GMT
Mercury expected to drop to -16C in Nuremberg overnight on Friday
Mercury expected to drop to -16C in Nuremberg overnight on Friday (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

A homeless woman gave birth outside in the German city of Nuremberg where temperatures had plunged as low as -15C.

Police spotted the woman, a friend and the newborn sheltering on ventilation grate outside a train station early on Friday morning.

Mother and baby had been huddling inside a sleeping bag trying to keep warm amid the freezing conditions.

Authorities took them to a hospital to warm up and for a check-up, Germany's dpa international news agency reported.

Further details on the incident were not immediately available.

A polar vortex has brought plunging temperatures and snow to vast swathes of western Europe and Germany in recent weeks.

Heavy snowfall in Germany has disrupted flights and road and rail travel, with authorities earlier this week warning people to stay at home.

Thousands of people in Nuremberg were told by utility firm N-Ergie to turn down their heating after a fire at a plant hit its ability to provide heat.

Temperatures in Nuremberberg plunged to -15C overnight on Thursday and are forecast to drop to -16C overnight on Friday.

Many trains were cancelled or delayed across large parts of Germany, and commuter rail services in the northern states of Lower Saxony and Bremen were halted altogether, said operator Deutsche Bahn.

Flights at Dortmund Airport were suspended on Sunday due to the weather and were due to resume on Thursday, a spokeswoman for the airport said.

Drivers forced to spend the night in their cars on the A2 motorway in northern Germany were given blankets, hot tea and food by the Federal Agency for Technical Relief, which deployed teams across Germany to free vehicles and clear snow.

Transport minister, Andreas Scheuer has urged Germans, already in lockdown due to the coronavirus crisis, urged Germans to stay at home

The German Weather Service said this February week was the coldest in Germany since 2012, but warned that global warming was making such cold snaps rarer.

“What we are experiencing now is an outlier to the cold side, but it has nothing to do with the general trend and it does not speak against climate change,” the service’s spokesman Andreas Friedrich said.

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