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Sweden in 'coldest December in 100 years'

Sweden in 'coldest December in 100 years'

Published: 17 Dec 2010 09:22 GMT+01:00
Updated: 17 Dec 2010 09:22 GMT+01:00

Power outages, traffic accidents as well as train and flight delays have left Swedes reeling from Thursday’s snowstorm, which forecasters say isn’t over yet.

“Slippery conditions will continue across the country. There is already a lot of snow on the roads,” SMHI’s Elin Torstensson told the TT news agency.

She explained that Sweden has experienced more cold days and more snow than is normal for December.

“There were a number of days in a row with below-freezing temperatures, so called ice days. And that we have that before Lucia (December 13th) hasn’t happened in more than 100 years,” she said.

In Örnsköldsvik in eastern Sweden, 2,300 customers of the Vattenfall power company were without electricity for several hours overnight. As of 7am Friday morning, about 1,000 households remained in the dark.

And an additional 1,000 homes lost power in Västerbotten in northern Sweden in the wake of the storm, which dumped a blanket of thick snow on much of the country.

However, according to Vattenfall spokesperson Magnus Örvell, the outages were likely caused by the storm’s heavy winds.

The fierce winds and continued snow also caused problems at many of Sweden’s airports, according to airport operator Swedavia.

Passengers are encouraged to contact their airlines for the latest information about possible delays.

Rail service was also affected by the storm. In Skåne in southern Sweden, trains traveling between Malmö and Lund were replaced with buses, and other trains were redirected via the Lommabanan route, according to the website of the Swedish Transit Authority (Trafikverket).

Trains traveling between Ängelholm and Båstad in western Sweden are experiencing 25 minute delays because of switching problems, while track problems have resulted in buses replacing trains between Karlskrona and Emmaboda in southern Sweden.

Swedish motorists also had trouble dealing with the wild winter weather. A long-haul truck slid off of route 56 north of Heby in central Sweden. While no one was injured, the road was blocked as crews struggled to clear away the trucks spilled load of gas canisters.

Outside of Luleå in northern Sweden, a school bus collided with a logging truck on Thursday, sending eight children to hospital for observation.

In Skåne, around 35 accidents were reported on Thursday, five of which resulted in injuries.

Meteorology agency SMHI has issued a class 1 warning covering all of northern Sweden due to the large amounts of new snow, combined with the strong winds.

The agency also forecasts that the snow will continue throughout much of the country on Friday.

Snow showers are expected to continue throughout the weekend over parts of Götaland and southern Svealand in central Sweden, with light flurries forecast for the north of the country.

“We’re expecting about five centimetres of new snow,” said SMHI's Torstensson.

Temperatures on Saturday are expected to range from a few degrees below freezing in Götaland to -25 Celsius in the far north, before cooling somewhat on Sunday when temperatures in the northern Sweden may dip down to 35 degrees below zero.

TT/The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

12:54 December 17, 2010 by blursd
"'There were a number of days in a row with below-freezing temperatures, so called ice days. And that we have that before Lucia (December 13th) hasn't happened in more than 100 years,' she said."

Paging Al Gore ... paging Al Gore.
15:19 December 17, 2010 by BravoTango
Gotta Love Global Warming. There's been a real cold spell here as well. But let me guess....someone in the Gore "camp" will say that freezing cold is a sure sign of global warming.
16:46 December 17, 2010 by Nemesis
Its winter.

Its Scandinavia.

What do they expect, a heatwave?
16:53 December 17, 2010 by jackityjack
Climate changes are an expected impact of a globally warmed planet. It doesn't mean warmer weather for all - in fact if glaciers continue melting they can affect the balance of ocean salinity which in turn shifts currents. If the gulf stream were to shift we could expect a lot more colder weather in the north.
17:58 December 17, 2010 by J Jack
Damn right, it's a;so about the jet stream speed and drift and it's relationship to Elninio and ocean currents. Cold waves like in Europe are a consequence of Global Warming.
18:03 December 17, 2010 by LordSqueak
lots of snow aswell, I couldn't bike to work this morning.
19:38 December 17, 2010 by GLO
Just another day of Glodal Warming. Mather Earth just has no respect.
19:55 December 17, 2010 by Tanskalainen
My wife's best friend Tula lives in Sweden and she is pleased as punch to see all the Routsalainen whining and moaning about the cold. To a Finn it's just another day.
23:06 December 17, 2010 by mikewhite
Not to mention the Ruotsalainen ... hei !

;-)
00:22 December 18, 2010 by j joy
So, J Jack and JackityJack, (I feel like I'm being jacked around here), why does the Goracle call it "Global" warming, when it is actually Global "hotspots" and Global "cool spots"? (Just as it always has been).

When the cool spots started showing the computer model predictions to be wrong, they changed it to Global Climate Change. No one, and I mean no one can explain the "global warming" that occurred in the 13th century and no one and I mean no one, can explain the Little Ice Age in the 1800's. Until you can explain those two phenomenon, I must accept that Mother Earth is doing her thing and there is not a thing we can do about it. Sit in front of the fireplace and have a hot cup of chocolate.
00:42 December 18, 2010 by Alohart
@j joy: You are confusing "weather" (i.e., relatively short-lived "hotspots" and "cool spots") with "climate". From Wikipedia:

"Climate encompasses the statistics of temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, wind, rainfall, atmospheric particle count and other meteorological elements in a given region over a long period of time. Climate can be contrasted to weather, which is the present condition of these same elements and their variations over periods up to two weeks."

This is a typical tactic of human-caused climate change deniers.

I'm amazed that you don't believe that the largest rapid change in the earth and its atmosphere except for large meteor impacts would not change the climate. Humans have drastically reduced the number of CO2-absorbing organisms (e.g., clear-cutting a high percentage of the world's forests) while at the same time drastically increasing the amount of CO2 released to the atmosphere (e.g., rapidly burning oil and coal that had removed CO2 from the atmosphere over millions of years).

But I know what your real agenda is: you're scared to death that governments might try to restrict what you want to do even though what you and billions of others are doing is threatening the lives of your descendants. Pathetic!
00:59 December 18, 2010 by ATinNM
From here:

[Dr. Jim Overland of NOAA's Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory, one of the world's experts on Arctic weather and climate ... demonstrated that the Arctic is normally dominated by low pressure in winter, and a "Polar Vortex" of counter-clockwise circulating winds develops surrounding the North Pole. However, during the winter of 2009-2010, high pressure replaced low pressure over the Arctic, and the Polar Vortex weakened and even reversed at times, with a clockwise flow of air replacing the usual counter-clockwise flow of air around the pole. This unusual flow pattern allowed cold air to spill southwards and be replaced by warm air moving poleward. This pattern is kind of like leaving the refrigerator door ajar--the refrigerator warms up, but all of the cold air spills out into the house.

[Cold air sweeping southwards] ... is all part of a natural climate pattern known as the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), which took on its most extreme configuration in 145 years of record keeping during the winter of 2009 - 2010. The NAO is a climate pattern in the North Atlantic Ocean of fluctuations in the difference of sea-level pressure between the Icelandic Low and the Azores High. It is one of oldest known climate oscillations--seafaring Scandinavians described the pattern several centuries ago

... the strongly negative NAO is back again this winter. High pressure has replaced low pressure over the North Pole, and according to NOAA, the NAO index during November 2010 was the second lowest since 1950. This strongly negative NAO has continued into December, and we are on course to have a top-five most extreme December NAO. Cold air is once again spilling southwards into the Eastern U.S. And Europe, bringing record cold and fierce snowstorms. .
05:40 December 18, 2010 by BarCode
Deniers: watch what you write or the Local will not allow you to comment. They know best. You are mentally deficient.
08:07 December 19, 2010 by cmbsweden
@Bravo Tango

You comment is simplistic in thought. One of the effects of global warming is Extreme Weather.......

I wonder what you would call the last 2 winters we have seen, both here and in the USA......they seem pretty extreme to me....
13:06 December 19, 2010 by Rebel
Hey, don't you worry...the Swedish government still thinks Al Gore and Barack Obama are the greatest minds to come along since Karl Marx -- or was it Groucho Marx?
05:55 December 20, 2010 by StillNoProof
Comment: People are forgetting that the main issue is that there still is no proof that "man's activities" are causing climate change. And it still has not been proven that CO2 causes global warming, yet all the global warming alarmists still cite this as the cause. It wasn't too long ago, when CO2 wan't panning out as the alarmists had envisioned, and their new warming enemy was methane.

First it was "Global Warming". Then when the warming stopped (for the last decade....even Phil Jones admits this), the new term became "Climate Change". Then last year, the US's science advisor, John Holdren, wanted people to start calling it "Global Climate Disruption".

Phil Jones admitted that he was not good at organizing, and when emails from East Anglia were released last year (Climategate), he very conveniently announced that most of the raw temperature data had been "lost".

Then, the international community creates these "Climate Change" summits, gathering numerous countries to discuss Co2 emissions. But, the main crux of the meetings seems to be how to implement a carbon tax. Is the picture starting to become a bit clearer?

Mars has also experienced what one would call global warming. It showed a reduction in it's polar ice caps. Now, who's going to blame that on human activity? Pluto has also experienced what is reffered to as warming, as well as Jupiter. All the planets in our solar system have undergone massive changes in one way or another. What is happening seems to be systemic, and is not just affecting the Earth.

The scientific simpletons need to start looking past CO2, and start looking for a common thread that is affecting our entire solar system, not just our planet.

Stop this trivial nonsense about the difference between weather and climate and start looking at the bigger picture. The vast majority is missing the obvious.
09:39 December 20, 2010 by AstroSphinx.se
For all of those people who claim that the chilly weather is caused by man made climate change, remember one thing, since I have studied this phenomena at great length and was at one time believing in it.

Take a look at some of the conditions, they say that we would get colder weather because of warming BECAUSE the POLAR ICE would melt. Well this is not the case, the polar ice is find, and even healthier than ever. They said that the melting of the polar ice would lead to too much fresh water which would stop the circulation of the Gulf-stream, that because the cold FRESH water from the polar ice would be lighter and sink down beneath the salty water, thus stopping the circulation that supposedly occurs because of this. WELL my question is, if there is NO POLAR ICE melt, and no glacier melt (which there ISN'T) what mechanism is CAUSING this supposed sudden "man made" climate change?

Please stop with the CO2 nonsense, and please stop changing out our regular lamps for mercury filled toxic bombs.. Focus upon pollution, and how to save our precious environment from pollution and toxic plastic and chemicals to save hot water in washes, because what you put out there, comes back.. instead try to focus on the best way to save energy, but not at the cost of using dangerous chemicals and such. We have some of the best environmental laws, its a pity that so many have been manipulated to care more about CO2 than SO2, and acid rain.

Changes in the environment are going to happen, but a CLEAN environment should be the focus and the goal.
21:13 December 20, 2010 by eloypalacios
Why isn't called Global Freezing instead for Global Warming?

For all the "warm people" you should first document yourself... instead of believing what non-expert people have to say. Mr. Gore has made it... millions of USD because of ignorant people... he got the wave and surfed it like a star!

For instance I would suggest you dive into a term called "Holocene Climatic Optimum" wiki-it and THEN think about global warming.
09:24 December 25, 2010 by Hughston
To turn the logic around a bit: If this cold wave is caused by global warming, then why couldn't the the hot years have been caused by global cooling? Could it be that Al Gore and the climate scientists were trying to make money by creating panic among the public. Nah, that would be dishonest.
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