Sweden floods: River reaches highest level in recorded history

More rain is expected to fall on Tuesday, amid flood warnings for almost all of southern Sweden.

Sweden floods: River reaches highest level in recorded history
A man gazes out over the Öresund Strait in Malmö on Monday. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Sweden's national weather agency SMHI on Tuesday issued flood warnings for southern Sweden up to northern Värmland and the Småland region on the east coast, with class-two alerts (on a scale from one to three) in place for Bohuslän, Gothenburg, Sjuhäradsbygden, Göta älv and northern Västergötland.

More rain is expected to fall in the affected regions today, but not as much as when Storm Dennis battered southern and western Sweden on Sunday. Wind and rain are also forecast for Friday.

The rivers Ätran and Viskan were threatening to burst their banks on Monday, with Ätran's water level at 143 metres above sea level in Svenljunga – three metres higher than normal and the highest ever recorded. A bridge in Svenljunga was closed as officials feared it could collapse.

Several trains and roads were cancelled or closed in the region after roads and tracks were flooded.

In Borås, property owners were urged to get their own pumps if possible, to prevent their basements from flooding. Emergency services were preparing to be called out to battle serious floods.

“We are monitoring the situation and are preparing for the fact that it may get worse,” Södra Älvsborg fire and rescue spokesperson Julia Karlsson told the TT news agency.

Swedish vocabulary

property owner – (en) fastighetsägare

rain – (ett) regn

flooding – (en) översvämning

water – vatten

river – (en) flod

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