Storm less severe than expected, but outstays its welcome

(Karl Müürsepp)
1/5/2015 8:54 AM
Category: Environment

Forecasters were again confounded as a storm with potential to raise sea water levels to critical 160 cm levels in the resort town of Pärnu only produced water 110 cm higher than average.

However, it was a wild weekend. The winds stuck around much longer - two whole days - than expected, finally changing direction and tormenting coastal inhabitants with winds from the northwest.

"The southwest storm didn't do anything, but the northwest storm today started pulling out sauna roof nails," one Saaremaa island resident told Postimees on Sunday, despite winds falling somewhat, to a 70-80 kph speed.

As of Monday morning, 300 people were still without power, down from 2,200 originally.

Judging by press reports, the storm also produced significant distress to passengers on Tallink's Gulf of Finland ferries, though the company assured that the tossing and rolling of the vessels was normal.

The temperatures were also higher than expected - 6 C in many places - and resulted in a complete melting of the Christmas snow. For now, however, the snow is back as a cold front moved in on Saturday night during the tail end of the storm, and road conditions on the main intercity roads deteriorated.

After a cold snap set to last into Friday, Delfi reported that Finnish weather sites were murmuring about yet another wet storm that may hit the Baltic coasts and southern Scandinavia, this one packing winds of over 140 kph and possibly attaining hurricane status.

K. Rikken

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