Rush-hour crashes as snow falls in Sweden

Swedish traffic authorities warned of slippery roads on Thursday as the morning's heavy snowfall sparked delays for commuters.

Rush-hour crashes as snow falls in Sweden
Snow near Stockholm last week. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Several centimetres of snow fell in less than a few hours in south-eastern parts of Sweden and the Stockholm region in the early morning, causing a spate of accidents on roads and motorways during rush hour.

“People are driving too fast considering the road conditions,” police spokesperson Thomas Agnevik told the Aftonbladet tabloid.

Sweden has one of the best road safety records in the world and the law requires all drivers to use winter tyres during icy or snowy weather.

But on Thursday, a series of accidents nonetheless sparked long delays for commuters on the busy E18 road near Västerås with some drivers stuck in queues for more than an hour, reported the daily newspaper.

On the E20 near Södertälje, a car turned on to its roof just before 7.30am. The driver's condition still remained unclear by 10.30am.

“The roads are tricky right now. We've had quite a few vehicles going off the road. It is still difficult to get people to adjust their speed,” said Agnevik.

“So far nobody has been seriously injured,” he added.

FORECAST: The weather where you are in Sweden

The heavy snowfall was expected to move north later on Thursday, and harsh winds were predicted at sea off Sweden's east coast, according to national weather institute SMHI.

Sweden has so far enjoyed a relatively mild winter, with one Nordic snow car race almost being cancelled earlier this month due to a lack of the white stuff.