Many still stranded after Stockholm blizzard
6 Dec 2012, 17:45
Published: 06 Dec 2012 17:45 GMT+01:00
- Delays persist as snow-bound Swedes dig out (06 Dec 12)
- Transport standstill as storm lashes Stockholm (05 Dec 12)
- Police warn drivers to stay off Swedish roads (05 Dec 12)
“It feels like I have waited for days,” traveller Rutger Engsäll told The Local.
Engsäll was left stranded in the middle of Stockholm's Central Station, stuck listening to repetitive updates on the speakers.
“I was supposed to go home to Malmö yesterday but the train was cancelled. Thankfully I got an overnight flat here in Stockholm," he said.
"Now I just hope that the train I'm supposed to take will leave on time.”
Wednesday's blizzard shut down the city’s entire train system for a time, with several other train lines cancelled and delayed all nationwide as they couldn't reach Stockholm.
Rail operator SJ expects most of the problems to be rectified soon.
“We plan to have the trains up and running as usual on Friday,” Elina Ili-Torvi, press officer at SJ, told The Local.
“There might be some delays and cancelled trains tomorrow, but hopefully most of it will be sorted out.”
While conditions around Stockholm appeared to be improving on Thursday, heavy snow continued to cause problems further north.
Motorists on the E4 motorway in Gävleborg County were stuck for hours after two separate accidents involving long-haul trucks left the roadway shutdown on Thursday before finally reopening in the late afternoon.
However, other trucks remained stuck on hilly sections of the E4 further north between Sundsvall and Härnosand, causing delays.
A class 1 warning remains in effect for Sweden's northeast coast, with forecasters at meteorology agency SMHI not expecting the warnings to be lifted until Friday morning.
Snow is expected to continue falling throughout the night, dumping as much as 30 centimetres in the region.
Crews at Stockholm's Arlanda airport were forced to remove 200,000 cubic metres of snow in the wake of the storm, nearly as much as the 250,000 cubic metres removed for the entire 2011-2012 winter season.
While road conditions remain uneven and dangerous in some areas, Sweden's rail traffic is functioning relatively well according to officials at the Swedish Transit Administration (Trafikverket).
“Rail traffic is up an running as it should be now. There are some delays from yesterday, but it is only SJ’s long-distance trains that are still running on a reduced schedule,” Monica Näslund, press officer at the agency, told The Local.
SJ and Trafikverket urge travellers to keep updated on the situation before heading to the station, however.
“Make sure to check on the web, either on our page or the page of the company with which you're travelling,” said Näslund.