After coronavirus, heavy snowfall pushes people inside home in Madrid
- All schools, libraries and cultural institutions will be closed on Monday and Tuesday in Madrid
- Officials have directed people to stay at home if possible after Storm Filomena
- The regional government of Madrid has distributed 277 tonnes of salt to the area's municipalities
After a heavy snowfall paralysed the Spanish capital, schools, courts and museums were closed throughout Madrid on Monday, AFP reported.
Officials have directed people to stay at home if possible after Storm Filomena dumped between 20-30 centimetres (7-8 inches) of snow on Madrid on Saturday, the heaviest snowfall since 1971.
All schools, libraries and cultural institutions will be closed on Monday and Tuesday. Courts will also remain shut till Wednesday.
The storm has claimed the lives of at least three people, keeping emergency service workers and army snowploughs busy as they freed 2,500 drivers trapped in their vehicles.
Lacking reinforcements, officials had only managed to clear main roads of snow and fallen tree branches, with most pavements, smaller roads and residential areas still covered.
The authorities are worried about the prospect of snow turning to ice, with temperatures expected to fall to up to minus 11 Celsius (12 Fahrenheit) on Monday and minus 13 (9 Fahrenheit) on Tuesday.
The regional government of Madrid has distributed 277 tonnes of salt to the area's municipalities to prevent the formation of ice. It is expected to receive another 3,500 tonnes of salt in the coming days from eastern Spain.
The government has insisted the road block will not affect the distribution of the coronavirus vaccine, with 350,000 doses due to be rolled out nationwide on Monday.
"The delays -- if there are delays -- will be minimal and slight," Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska told Spanish public radio. The distribution of the jabs to all regions was "guaranteed", he added.
The first flights resumed from Madrid airport on Sunday after the army cleared snow from the runways. Madrid metro operated round the clock for the second consecutive day ensuring essential workers get to their jobs. Rail services are still in the process of re-establishment. A total of 138 roads across Spain remained closed on Monday and nearly 700 were affected by the storm.
Most residents heeded the government's call to stay at home on Monday, with the capital's streets all but deserted and quiet, except for the sound of shovels scraping snow and ice.
"It's a day to stay home," said Javier Bermejo, a butcher in the local market.