News / Europe

    Mild Weather Disrupts Winter Olympics

    Snow and brown patches are seen near the alpine course at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, Krasnaya Polyana, Russia, Feb. 11, 2014.
    Snow and brown patches are seen near the alpine course at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, Krasnaya Polyana, Russia, Feb. 11, 2014.
    Mike Richman
    A spell of warm weather is disrupting events at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, presenting a challenge for Olympic organizers with temperatures forecast to rise again this week.

    Athletes have voiced concerns that melting and soft snow is hampering their ability to compete.

    On Tuesday, a training session for Alpine skiing downhill was canceled to protect the snow, while mild weather conditions meant a slushy track for a Nordic Combined event.

    Some athletes in the men’s biathlon 12.5-kilometer pursuit Monday fell while skiing on a course softened by warm weather.

    The head of the Sochi Olympics, Dmitry Chernyshenko, said Tuesday there is no need yet to use emergency snow reserves at mountain venues.
     
    "You know that we had a special program to secure the snow, and the snow is still in some reservoirs that survived over the previous summer," he said.   "So in case we will need some snow, we can use it from our reservoir."  

    An "Electric" Atmosphere

    Chernyshenko also spoke in glowing terms about the atmosphere at the Sochi Games.

    "Great conditions for the visitors and spectators to come and have fun and greet our athletes," he said, "and this is great that in terms it creates the atmosphere in the Games which is electric now, with a crowd of people gathering ((at)) all venues."  

    In Sochi, a Black Sea resort city with a subtropical climate, the average February temperatures are around 10 degrees Celsius.  But on Monday, the high was about 16, and after a brief cool down, they could return to the mid-teens on Thursday.

    The current conditions have put Sochi on track to be the warmest Winter Olympics in history.

    In results Tuesday, Canadian freestyle skier Dara Howell won the women's slopestyle event.  She beat American Devin Logan and fellow Canadian Kim Lamarre, giving her country the overall lead in gold medals with nine.

    Norway in Lead

    Norway later recaptured the lead, courtesy of big performances by two of its Nordic skiers.  Ola Vigen Hattestad won the men's cross-country sprint, and Maiken Caspersen Fallas did likewise in the women's event.

    In the men's halfpipe, American snowboarder Shaun White will go for his third straight Olympic gold medal Tuesday.  He produced the best score in Tuesday's qualifying heats of 95.75.

    Also Tuesday, the International Olympic Committee lifted its ban on India that had been in place since 2012, when India's Olympic Association elected tainted officials.  India elected new officials Sunday, clearing the way for its flag to be raised in the Olympic Village.

    There are 98 medal events at the Sochi Games, 12 more than in Vancouver in 2010.

    Chernyshenko also spoke in glowing terms about the atmosphere at the Sochi Games, calling it "electric."

    "Great conditions for the visitors and spectators to come and have fun and greet our athletes, and this is great that in terms it creates the atmosphere in the Games which is electric now, with a crowd of people gathering all venues."

    In Sochi, a Black Sea resort city with a subtropical climate, the average February temperatures are around 10 degrees Celsius. But on Monday, the high was about 16, and after a brief cool down, they could return to the mid-teens on Thursday.

    The current conditions have put Sochi on track to be the warmest Winter Olympics in history.

    In results Tuesday, Canadian freestyle skier Dara Howell won the women's slopestyle event. She beat American Devin Logan and fellow Canadian Kim Lamarre, giving her country the overall lead in gold medals with nine.

    Norway later recaptured the lead, courtesy of big performances by two of its Nordic skiers. Ola Vigen Hattestad won the men's cross-country sprint, and Maiken Caspersen Fallas did likewise in the women's event.

    In the men's halfpipe, American snowboarder Shaun White will go for his third straight Olympic gold medal Tuesday. He produced the best score in Tuesday's qualifying heats of 95.75.

    Also Tuesday, the International Olympic Committee lifted its ban on India that had been in place since 2012, when India's Olympic Association elected tainted officials. India elected new officials Sunday, clearing the way for its flag to be raised in the Olympic Village.

    There are 98 medal events at the Sochi Games, 12 more than in Vancouver in 2010.

    You May Like

    Russian-Backed Offensive in Syria Pushes War to Tipping Point

    As threat to Aleppo and rebel forces grows, US plan to negotiate becomes less and less appealing for Syrian government, says one military analyst

    IS Runs Timber Smuggling Business in Afghanistan, Officials Say

    Government turning blind eye to smuggling, according to tribal leaders; Afghanistan's forest cover dropped by 50 percent in three decades, experts say

    Video White House Seeks $1.8 Billion to Combat Zika

    Obama administration says funding would 'support essential strategies to combat the virus' such as rapidly expanding mosquito control programs, accelerating vaccine research

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: lola
    February 11, 2014 2:42 PM
    I want to give a shout out to Ola Hattestad he did an awesome job!! I and I didnt know he was dating another athlete, they make a nice couple althoug she looks older than him for some reason.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenyai
    X
    February 08, 2016 4:30 PM
    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video Sanders, Clinton Battle for Young Democratic Vote

    Despite a narrow loss to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in last week's Iowa Democratic caucuses, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders secured more than 80 percent of the vote among those between the ages of 18 and 29. VOA correspondent Aru Pande talks to Democrats in New Hampshire about who they are leaning towards and why in this week's primary.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.