Storm causes power outages, disrupts ferry traffic ({{commentsTotal}})

High winds have left 7,000 homes without power over the past 24 hours and disrupted ferry traffic between the Estonian islands and its mainland since the afternoon.

According to Elektrilevi figures, nearly 2,000 clients were still without power by evening. While last night most outages were being reported in Ida-Viru County in Northeastern Estonia, by morning the brunt of the outages was located in Southern Estonia and Lääne County in the country's northwest, reported ETV's nightly news broadcast "Aktuaalne kaamera."

Most power outages have occurred in rural areas, where fallen trees have downed power lines.

As the storm continues, Elektrilevi recommends keeping cell phones charged and battery-operated flashlights handy, and likewise stockpiling water in areas where water supply is electricity-dependent.

High winds and low water levels have also disrupted ferry traffic between Estonia's larger western islands and its mainland.

TS Laevad announced that ferry service would be partially restored by evening after the Harilaid, which has a smaller draft, was brought on to serve the routes.

Priority passengers on the Harilaid would include passenger buses, operational vehicles, mail trucks as well as the vehicles of persons with disabilities; other passengers would be served based upon their order of arrival.

As a result of high winds on Wednesday, the ferry Ionas ceased operation on the route connecting Saaremaa to the mainland, while the Virtsu-Kuivastu route continued to be served by the Hiiumaa.

Lindaliin, n operator of high-speed ferry services between Tallinn and Helsinki, was likewise forced by heavy winds to cancel all scheduled departures on Wednesday.

Editor: Editor: Aili Vahtla