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Rail services delayed by Swedish forest fires

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Rail services delayed by Swedish forest fires
Firefighters at the Vrinneviskogen forest. Photo: Niklas Luks /TT
14:00 CEST+02:00
Forest and grassland fires in Sweden have caused delays and diversions to rail services.

A fire in Finnerödja has resulted in a diversion to the service between Gothenburg and Stockholm. Passengers have therefore been told to expect delays.

The fire, which had raged since early Friday afternoon, has now been contained and is under control.

“We have 20-25 people at the scene. There is no fire at present but there is a lot of smoke from things that are smouldering,” senior firefighter Marin Duberg of the fire service in Nerike told TT.

Up to 60 hectares of countryside are estimated to have burnt in the fire.

The rail line between Laxå and Töreboda has been closed as a result of the blaze.

“All trains are being diverted. Passengers will be able to travel between Gothenburg and Stockholm, but with delays. Passengers will not have to change trains but it will take longer to reach destinations,” Pär Gustafsson, press spokesperson with the Swedish Transport Administration, said.

Road traffic on the E20 motorway is also affected by the fire, with some delays and diversions, although major issues are not expected as the day goes on.

“(The fire) is out and we will try to get traffic moving again as quickly as possible. The train track is more severely affected… we have material and hoses across the tracks,” Duberg said at around 1pm on Saturday.

Meanwhile, fire caught in a forest near to a military exercise area in Älvdalen. Cilivian and military fire services were working to extinguish the blaze.

“We are working full time to put out the fire and stumps that are smouldering and burning roots. It is still sensitive to the wind. We do not want it to spread again,” emergency services lead responder Johan Bodins said.

A helicopter that assisted in the firefighting effort in Älvdalen on Friday returned to the area on Saturday. The area is unchanged in size overnight, covering over 700 square metres.

“Post-extinguishment and monitoring will continue for several days,” Bodins said.

A third fire in the Vrinneviskogen forest in Norrköping had also now been extinguished and is being monitored by land owners.

READ ALSO: Sweden hit by a wave of forest fires

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