Baby boom nine months after storm

The storm that swept over southern Sweden in January, leaving thousands without power and destroying swathes of woodland, has finally brought some good news: a baby boom.

Couples in the Borås area clearly found plenty to do in the darkness that followed “Storm Gudrun”: the birth rate in the town during the past week is twenty times higher than in the same week last year.

“Many people were without electricity for a long time, so this could continue well into November,” midwife Louise Loubelo told Swedish Radio.

Last week – nine months and one week after the storm – saw 63 babies born in Borås hospital’s maternity unit, twenty more than during the previous week.


Winter storm set to sweep across Sweden

A winter storm, which has already claimed two lives in Norway, is forecast to sweep across Sweden on Friday. The national weather service has issued its second-highest warning, saying snow is most likely on the cards in many parts of the country this weekend.

Winter storm set to sweep across Sweden
Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The unusually mild Christmas weather is set to come to an end on Friday, when a winter storm crosses the Norwegian border and into Sweden.

“Christmas day will be very windy, especially in the evening,” the national weather agency SMHI wrote on its website, adding winds are expected to reach a speed of 21 meters per second in the southwest.

A class 1 warning, the lowest on a scale of three, has been issued in the southwest, while a class 2 warning has been issued for the north and the mountain ranges of Härjedalen and Jämtland in the east.

“Leading into Boxing Day there will be rain coming in from the southeast,” agency spokesman Marcus Sjöstedt told news agency TT.

Sjöstedt said it will most likely snow in the south on Saturday, adding the white stuff is likely to fall also in the centre and moving up towards the north during the night to Sunday.

 In Norway, the storm is thought to have killed two people on Christmas Eve. One woman died in Oslo after being hit by a flagpole that the winds had snapped into two. On Norway’s southern coast, a man is believed to have drowned after being caught by a wave and dragged out to sea.