Road officials warn of Midsummer madness

It could be a crazy weekend on Sweden's roads, warn officials. Last year, 11 people died on the road in Sweden during the Midsummer holiday, and there were 32 accidents in the Stockholm area alone.

“There are a lot of people out on the roads, and many of them are in a hurry,” said Birgitta Holmström, spokeswoman at the Swedish Road Administration, to Dagens Nyheter.

Sweden has extra police on patrol this weekend to help calm the traffic and craziness that inevitably happens with the dangerous mixture of a three-day weekend, aquavit, and sunshine.

Extra police motorcycle patrols, marked and unmarked police cars, and many speed checkpoints will be helping keep drivers in check, reported DN.

Police advise keeping proper distance between vehicles, being careful with overtaking, and following speed limits.

The biggest slowdown is expected to be near the Eugenia tunnel near Norrtull due to construction limiting traffic to two lanes from four. Congestion is likely to be heavy on E4 as many head north for Dalarna and Öland.

The Road Administration is recommending that drivers avoid these areas where possible over the next three days:

¤ E4 near the Eugenia tunnel/Norrtull – due to construction limiting available lanes from four to two

¤ E4 north – because of the large amount of people heading to Dalarna for the weekend

¤ E4 south – as traffic is likely to build up in the direction of Södertälje

¤ 276 north toward Norrtälje – many take this smaller road this weekend

¤ 222 east toward Värmdö – traffic is heavy as people head for the archipelago

¤ 73 toward Nynäshamn – an accident prone road where speed limits are often ignored as people rush to catch ferries to Gotland and Talin.

“Prepare yourself for queues,” police spokesman Lennart Sjöstrand told Svenska Dagbladet.

“If you are mentally prepared and relaxed, it will be alright.”