Snow and ice in the French Alps have stranded 15,000 vehicles, snarling holiday traffic to and from ski resorts in the French Alps.
The government asked drivers to "exercise the utmost caution" and avoid travel if possible.
One man died when his vehicle slid into a ravine.
More than three-quarters of the country was under a severe weather watch. Forecasters warned of more snowfall and "significant re-freezing" overnight and warned of slippery roads.
Strong winds caused damage elsewhere in France, shutting the port of Calais and the celebrated gardens of Versailles.
Heavy snow also caused disruption to roads in Germany, creating a 25-kilometer traffic jam on the A8 motorway near Stuttgart.
In Britain, officials issued warnings of ice across the country and heavy snow in some areas. Hundreds of homes were without power in parts of England.
Some information for this report came from AP and AFP.