A woman using a smartphone cast a long shadow on the pavement outside Helsinki Central Station on Tuesday, 12 March 2024. In Southern Finland, the weather is expected to change in a way that could feel quite dramatically toward the end of the week, with a rainy front possibly dumping up to 20 centimetres of snow in some areas on Sunday. (Vesa Moilanen – Lehtikuva)

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WHAT HAS BEEN a relatively warm start to the month may be interrupted abruptly at the end of the week, reports Helsingin Sanomat.

“In the worst-case scenario, 10–20 centimetres of snow will fall in southern parts of the country. It’s more probable, though, that the accumulation will be in the two-to-five-centimetre range,” Pia Isolähteenmäki from the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) stated to Helsingin Sanomat on Tuesday.

Although snowfall is not a rare occurrence in March, the change in weather may feel dramatic given that a new temperature record for the spring (7.1°C) was measured in Kaarina, Southwest Finland, on Tuesday.

First signs of the change can be detected in the early hours of Wednesday. Forecasts by Foreca suggest that the mercury could fall up to 10 degrees below the freezing point in the night. The day is forecast to be humid and foggy but not particularly rainy, with the mercury rising a few degrees over the freezing point.

On Thursday and Friday, a low-pressure front is expected to track over the country, delivering rain and heavy winds. Isolähteenmäki told Helsingin Sanomat that the rains are set to be so heavy especially in southern and south-western regions that they will do away with all the snow.

Temperatures are forecast to decline at the end of the week.

On Saturday, rains are expected in large parts of the country, taking the form of water in the south and snow in Ostrobothnia and Lapland. On Sunday, a rainy front will set its court toward southern parts of the country, delivering what could be an up to 20-centimetre layer of snow.

Isolähteenmäki, though, reminded that the forecast contains a considerable degree of uncertainty, especially when it comes to the amount of rain.

“It may be that the ground in some localities is completely white. Or it may be that there’s only a thin layer of snow,” she said to the daily newspaper.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT

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