The night of January 19 brought heavy snowfall that fast spread north and west from Southeastern Estonia and has caused power to go out in many parts of Estonia, grid operator Elektrilevi communicated. Outages are most extensive in Harju, Rapla and Pärnu counties.
The distribution network operator convened a crisis committee meeting on Thursday morning.
Heavy snowfall and wet snow have caused branches to give and fall on power lines, which has resulted in extensive power outages all over mainland Estonia. Elektrilevi teams have been out fixing power lines since the wee hours and have restored power to 971 customers, the DSO said. According to Elektrilevi, over 25,000 customers were without power before 11 a.m. on Thursday.
Because the weather remains changeable and more snow is falling, teams are working in difficult conditions. "Based on prior early response experience, roughly half of customers should see power restored inside 12 hours. We will have more accurate forecasts by this evening once the situation has stabilized and snowfall ended," Elektrilevi CEO Mihkel Härm said.
The Transport Administration said that road maintenance crews are not able to stay on top of heavy snowfall and removing trees that have fallen on roads in Pärnu, Rapla and Harju counties.
More than 15 centimeters of wet snow has fallen in a short time, and even though every available snow plow is on the job, crews cannot guarantee satisfactory road conditions in the three counties. The Transport Administration has called for an emergency road clearing regime that should remain in effect until 8 p.m.
Editor: Marcus Turovski