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Extreme cold leaves thousands without power in Nordic countries while floods again hit Germany

Extremely cold temperatures compounded by strong winds and snow are wreaking havoc across the Nordic region, leaving thousands without power while others braved the cold for hours stuck in their cars along clogged highways

Via AP news wire
Thursday 04 January 2024 10:22 GMT

Extremely cold temperatures compounded by gale-force winds and snow wreaked havoc across the Nordic region Thursday, leaving thousands without power while others braved the cold for hours stuck in their cars along clogged highways.

In Germany, heavy rains again caused floods in regions that have seen persistent flooding in the last two weeks.

The deep freeze disrupted transportation throughout the Nordic region amid reports of traffic chaos following closures of sections of highways and major roads. Problems with rail service have also been reported.

Electricity was cut to some 4,000 homes in Arctic Sweden where temperatures plummeted to 38 degrees Celsius (minus 36.4 degrees Fahrenheit), according to Swedish public radio. In the southern part of the country, motorists were stuck in the cars or evacuated to a nearby sport complex where they spent the night.

In neighboring Denmark, police urged motorists to avoid unnecessary trips as wind and snow battered the northern and western parts of the country.

In Finnish Lapland, the municipality of Enontekio — located close to the border with Norway and Sweden - on Thursday recorded the country's lowest temperature this winter at minus 42.5 degrees C (minus 44.5 degrees F). Meteorologists are forecasting even colder temperatures during the rest of this week.

In Denmark, a ferry sailing between the capitals of Norway and Denmark, finally docked in Copenhagen Thursday after some 900 passengers spent the night aboard the vessel that had been idling in the Oresund straight between Denmark and southern Sweden. On Wednesday, the weather hampered the Crown Seaways vessel from sailing into the Copenhagen harbor.

In Germany, heavy rain has resumed in regions that have seen persistent flooding over the past two weeks. Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Thursday plans to make his second visit this week to inspect a dike and a sandbag-filling facility in the eastern town of Sangerhausen.

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