Morning snowfall renders driving conditions hazardous in Southern Finland
The snowfall that was presaged on Wednesday evening and began in earnest in the early hours of Thursday rendered morning driving conditions difficult in the Province of Uusimaa and elsewhere in Southern Finland.
According to the Finnish Meteorological Institute, certain areas received five centimetres of snow in the space of a few hours and in some areas up to ten centimetres of the white stuff were predicted by the late morning.
Since then, however the road conditions have improved in the south of the country. The main roads are already clear of snow. Slush, however, still complicates driving, but at least the roads are no longer as slippery as they were earlier, the traffic police report.
Early in the morning extremely poor driving conditions plagued motorists at least in the southern coast provinces, and the Southern Savo and Southern Karelia regions in the southeast.
In the capital area accidents that further hindered the flow of traffic took place at least on the Tuusulanväylä highway between the Ruskeasanta and Ilola interchanges, on the Ring Road III at the Pakkala junction, and on the Turunväylä mototway (Highway 1) near the Tuomarila interchange.
Rail traffic, in turn, has come off without any incidents during the morning hours, which will have come as a pleasant surprise to commuters, whose patience was sorely strained last winter.
In the course of the day the snowfall is expected to subside. The ground will remain white at least for the weekend, for even in the south of the country temperatures are expected to stay below freezing.
Only in the very southernmost regions of Finland did the temperature climb above 0° Celsius already in the morning, and the snow there duly turned to sleet.
Previously in HS International Edition:
(Road) Signs of impending winter (19.10.2010)
Heavy snowfall continues (22.12.2009)
Heavy snowfall delays flights and causes problems on road and rail in Southern Finland (21.12.2009)
A selection of images of the early morning snowfall in the capital (click on "katso lisää kuvia" and then on "seuraava")
The Finnish Meteorological Institute