Rescue Board: Storm slowing but 33,000 households still without power ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

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Flooding in Narva-Jõesuu after Wednesday's storm.
Flooding in Narva-Jõesuu after Wednesday's storm. Source: Sergei Stepanov/ERR

The Rescue Board said as of 10 p.m. on Wednesday night the storm which swept across Estonia earlier in the day is dying down and at 11 p.m. network operator Elektrilevi told ERR 33,015 households were still without electricity.

Elektrilevi, the largest electricity network operator in Estonia, said as of 10 p.m. 36,200 were still without electricity, power having been restored to several thousand people already on Wednesday evening.

The Rescue Board said more than 500 calls had been made to the emergency call center. Most of these calls were about fallen trees and a spokeswoman advised drivers to take more caution than normal on their morning commutes as many trees or branches could still be in the road.

In all areas, the number of challenges is declining and the situation is returning to normal, a statement from the Rescue Board said.

The Rescue Board said the biggest challenges have been in Saaremaa, where an additional rescue team had been called on to assist, but problems have been reported all over the country. Pärnu and Viljandi County were also badly affected.

Ferries were canceled between the western islands and the mainland and at least one ferry was canceled between Tallinn and Helsinki on Wednesday evening. Train operator Elron said westbound trains services were delayed after trees fell on the tracks and in Tallinn a tramline was temporarily blocked when a tree fell on the track and through overhead powerlines in Kopli.

Earlier in the day at 4:47 p.m., the emergency call center received a report that two children were trapped under a tree at Padise Community Center. An ambulance took the children to hospital.

The storm was predicted to reach its peak between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. and then begin to weaken. Wind has reached speeds of up to 30 m/s in Saaremaa.

Rescue Board issues storm advice 

The Rescue Board has re-issued instructions and tips on how to prepare for a storm as well as how to act during.

Before the storm:

  • Pick up any items in a yard or garden that may be damaged by the wind.
  • Park vehicles in the open or in the garage.
  • Take into account possible blackouts: have extra food and drink.
  • Fill the car's fuel tank.

During a storm:

  • Stay indoors.
  • Don't drive. If driving is unavoidable, choose the appropriate speed and be aware you may face additional objects in the road.
  • Keep away from dropped power lines and report them to Elektrilevi at 1343 and the Emergency Response Center at 112.
  • If possible, avoid [wood-burning] heating. In case of strong winds, chimneys can end up working backwards, with the wind overpowering their typical draft.
  • In the event of personal injury or death resulting in imminent danger call 112.

In the event of a power outage:

  • Inform your electricity companies.
  • In the event of a power failure, use a torch with batteries rather than candles as a light source.
  • Help older people in your community and check they are okay.

 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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