A pedestrian at Helsinki Market Square on Sunday, 16 February 2020. (Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva)


A STORM with wind speeds of up to 28 metres per second brought down trees and raised water levels in different parts of Finland on Sunday.

Helsingin Sanomat on Monday reported that the strongest gust speed of 28.4 metres per second was measured off the coast of Vaasa, South Ostrobothnia. The sustained wind speed, meanwhile, exceeded 21 metres per second at a number of weather observation stations along the west coast, such as Rauma and Uusikaupunki.

The storm caused storm surges of over 140 centimetres in Oulu, North Ostrobothnia, and Kemi, Lapland, according to Ilta-Sanomat.

The strong winds caused power outages for more than 10,000 households, more than 2,000 of which remained without power at 5am on Monday. Rescue services in several parts of the country were notified of trees ripped up and roofs torn off by the storm.

“The situation calmed down by midnight,” Ismo Ojala, the executive fire officer on duty at Ostrobothnia Rescue Services, told STT around 4am on Monday.

The storm also caused damage in the capital region, felling a tree on bus in Espoo and another on the Helsinki—Turku highway.

The Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) reminded this morning that the storm may continue to cause power outages and other types of damage during the course of Monday. “The winds may be dying down, but they're still relative strong. There can be gusts with speeds of 20 metres per second here and there," Tomi Laurinen, the meteorologist on duty at FMI, told STT on Monday.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT