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Last few days of 2023 to see milder weather in Estonia

A snowy Faehlmanni street in central Tallinn.
A snowy Faehlmanni street in central Tallinn. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Thursday's weather in Estonia will remain cold, with sleet and snow, but the arrival of low pressure systems between Thursday evening and New Year's eve will see precipitation falling more as sleet or even rain.

The mild, but changeable, conditions in the next few days will be followed by a return of sleet, snow and colder temperatures over the New Year holiday, however.

Low pressure areas from the Atlantic have brought warmer weather and more precipitation to Europe more broadly, while flood warnings in Germany and the Czech Republic are at their highest possible levels.

This is set to continue as first Sweden and then the Baltic will be hit by the arrival of new low pressure zones, meaning these systems will dictate weather in Estonia, set to get milder as well, over the next few days.

A low pressure zone arrives in Estonia late on Thursday. Source: ERR

On Wednesday, a high pressure area over Estonia brought only patches of light snow, and sub-zero temperatures even during the day.

Wednesday night was again clear with only some light snow, light breezes, and temperatures ranging from -5 to -1 degree Celsius.

Thursday morning dawns cloudier, though with no precipitation and calm conditions. Temperatures are still below zero, from -6 to -5 in the Northeast, -4 to -3 in the South and West, and -2 degrees on the islands.

Weather map in Estonia for the morning of December 28, 2023. Source: ERR

The arrival of a low pressure front Thursday over the Baltic will reach the islands first, followed by the mainland later on in the day. Southwesterlies will pick up in speed as a result, creating blizzard conditions in places, and hazardous driving conditions.

The risk of ice hazards on the roads increases, and all roads may be more slippery, so care must be taken when driving or when negotiating sidewalks.

Southwesterlies of 4-13 meters per second, in gusts on the coasts up to 18 meters per second, are forecast daytime, when ambient temperatures will range from -3 degrees in the Northeast, to -1 in a central band running from Tallinn down to Võru, and will hover around zero in the West and over the islands.

Daytime weather map in Estonia for Thursday, December 28, 2023. Source: ERR

On the islands, ambient temperatures will rise above zero later on Thursday evening, and precipitation will fall mainly as rain and sleet there as a result.

Heading into Thursday evening, the continued low pressure zone brings more snow, particularly in the East where temperatures will remain below zero, and sleet or rain, primarily in the West where the mercury as noted rises above zero.

The warmer temperatures will spread from West to East through the course of the night, reaching the shores of Peipi järv in the small hours.

Again, with the temperature difference between road surfaces (still below zero) and the ambient temperatures now above freezing, will make for slippery roads.

Friday will see temperatures above zero nationwide, with southwesterlies bringing patches of sleet and rain.

Saturday, the penultimate day of the year, continues this trend and temperatures remain in the plusses, while New Year's Eve, Sunday, will get a bit colder and windier.

The snow and sleet will return daytime on December 31 and make for some blizzard-like conditions in places again, so take care if traveling somewhere to see in 2024.

Overall as we head into January 1, temperatures will be below zero, windy and with snow and sleet, making it necessary to wrap up warm when attending outdoor festivities.

Four-day weather outlook, Friday, December 29, 2023, to Monday, January 1, 2024. Source: ERR

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Editor: Andrew Whyte, Barbara Oja

Source: 'Aktuaalne kaamera,' weather forecaster Taimi Päljak

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