Storm ‘Berit’ leaves 80,000 without power

Some 80,000 households remained without electricity in southern Sweden on Monday morning in the wake of the weekend's storm.

Storm 'Berit' leaves 80,000 without power

The low pressure front which caused the storm has passed Scandinavia, with its epicentre now close to St. Petersburg in Russia as it continues its march eastwards.

Winds battered several areas of southern Sweden with heavy rains in places.

“The wind is still hard locally,” said SMHI’s duty meteorologist Thomas Fyrby to the TT news agency early Monday.

The major power companies continued the battle to repair their battered power grid on Monday with the worst affected being Eon’s subscribers in the far south, mainly in Skåne, where around 60,000 lacked power.

“I dare not say when all this will be repaired,” said Jan-Erik Olsson at Eon’s press office.

The damage to Vattenfall’s network has hit about 16,000 subscribers, of which 12,500 are in Västergötland with most of them in the vicinity of Borås.

For Fortum the power outages affected around 5,200 customers. None of these companies dared venture a forecast for when the damage could be remedied.

Approximately 14,000 of Telia’s customers in southern Sweden had no telephone connection on Monday morning with the worst problems in Skåne where 6,500 subscribers had lost their fixed phone lines.

“Otherwise it is fairly evenly spread,” Henry Eld at Telia Sonera, told TT.

Rail traffic in southern Sweden gradually began to resume normal service on Monday morning, including the route between Malmö and Ystad.

According to the Transport Administration’s (Trafikverket) the southern main line is now navigable, except between Hässleholm and Alvesta.

Most major roads in southern and western Sweden are reported to be navigable again, including the Öresund and Öland bridge connections.

Air traffic remained affected, with both domestic and international flights from Arlanda and Landvetter airports suffering delays and cancellations.

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Trains delayed and roads slippery in Sweden despite lower snowfall

Sweden's state-owned rail company SJ cancelled several train services on Tuesday as a result of the snowy weather, while forecasters warned that roads could still be slippery in many regions.

Trains delayed and roads slippery in Sweden despite lower snowfall

SJ is cancelling several regional trains on Tuesday between Stockholm and Uppsala, Stockholm and Västerås, and Gävle and Linköping at the request of the Swedish Transport Administration, which wants to free up space on the tracks. 

At the same time, weather forecaster SMHI warned that, while snowfall would decrease over the day, there would still be a risk of slippery roads in many areas.

“It’s still continuing to snow, but the intensive snowfall we are now warning about will come to an end during the day, starting in the south of the country,” state meteorologist Angelica Lundberg told the TT newswire.  “Over the coming days there may be an increased risk of slipping and this is the case most of all close to the coast.” 

Bengt Olsson, press officer for the Swedish Transport Administration, told SVT that the disruptions seen on Sunday and Monday looked likely to ease off on Tuesday. 

“It’s a bit calmer so far. There’s another type of road surface to day. It’s starting to freeze up a but. There’s a lot of crust from the snow and patches of ice out on the road, so its the risk of skidding that we are trying to deal with today.”

The slippery roads have led to some busses being cancelled, with Dalatrafiken, the bus operator in Dalarna, cancelling several regional bus services. 

Buses parked at the Keolis bus depot in Värtahamnen cruise terminal in Stockholm.
Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Stockholm’s transport operator SL suspended the Lindingöbanan Light-railway line on Tuesday morning, and has also reduced some commuter train services. In Söderort, Huddinge and Botkyrka all bus services have been cancelled. 

“The measures taken to prevent skidding aren’t working,” SL’s press spokesperson Andreas Strömberg told SVT. “At Juliaborg in Huddinge six of our buses got stuck, so the traffic controllers decided to cancel all further services so we can get in snow ploughs.

Snow was continuing to fall on Tuesday over much of central Sweden, and SMHI has issued the lowest “yellow” weather warning for Sörmland, Västmanland, Örebro, Dalarna, and the north of Värmland. 

In most places, there is now between 5cm-15cm of snow, with 20cm in some places.