Southern Sweden braced for snowstorms

Wednesday afternoon and evening are expected to bring strong winds and heavy snowfalls to the south of Sweden. Forecasters say that the bad weather will cause chaos on the roads.

By lunchtime on Wednesday a good deal of snow had already covered the south and the Swedish Roads Agency warned on its web site that driving conditions were treacherous in many areas.

“It’s snowing all the way up the east coast, from Skåne up to the southern part of Norrland,” said Håkan Hultberg, meteorologist at the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute at about 1pm.

But that’s nothing compared to what is expected, he said.

“There’s some nasty weather over Poland and Germany at the moment, but it’s on its way north.”

When it reaches Skåne on Wednesday evening it is expected to bring powerful winds.

“Combined with the snowfall it will create a lot of snow drifts, primarily on the plains and open areas,” said Hultberg.

The snowy weather will move across the whole of the Götaland and Svealand regions on Thursday. In Skåne the authorities are ready for the consequences of the weather. SOS Alarm, the emergency services, Skåne’s medical disaster teams and the police are in the process of massive preparation procedures, according to the newspaper Sydsvenskan.

Some 30 all-terrain vehicles have been prepared for reaching people who fall ill at home or who are involved in traffic accidents in inaccessible areas.


Floods as Swedish cities get two months of rain in 24 hours

Large areas of Sweden saw extreme levels of rain over the weekend, with the city of Linköping receiving more than 100mm of rain in 24 hours, twice as it usually receives in the whole of August. 

Floods as Swedish cities get two months of rain in 24 hours

According to Swedish weather forecaster SMHI, the Linköping-Malmslätt area received 96mm between Saturday night at 8am on Sunday morning. The area normally received between 60mm and 70mm in August as a whole. 

“There was such an absurd amount of rain that the data was at first rejected by our system,” Therese Fougman, a meteorologist at the forecaster, told Sweden’s TT newswire. “It is continuing to rain during the day, and it is lying in a band over Östergötland, Sörmland och further up towards Uppland, predicting there would be a further 40mm to 50mm in the next 12 hours. 

The downpours have led to flooding in several areas, and caused traffic problem with cars at risk of aquaplaning on roads such as the E18, which were covered in a thick layer of water. 

Lennart Ågren, who was the duty leader of rescue services in Östra Götaland, told TT on Sunday afternoon that rescuers had been called out to several floods in Linköping and Mantorp. 

“There were streets under water, and water was running into properties so we had to throw all our resources at it for several hours,” he said. 

In Jönköping, rescue services were called out to flooding at a school and in other places, while in Växjö, lightening hit close to the place where a student party was being held at the local university campus. 

In Linköping, rescue services told TT that they had been called out 30 times. “We’ve been stretched but have managed to handle it,” said Pedher Helmer, who was in charge of rescue services in Östergötland over the weekend. 

The heavy rain is expected to move to Blekinge, Skåne, Öland and Gotland over the coming days, with a risk for flooding.