Germany braces for severe storm and high winds

Germany will be hit by a severe autumn storm with wind speeds over 110km per hour on Thursday, forecasters predicted.

Germany braces for severe storm and high winds
People look out onto the Baltic Sea in Heiligendamm, northern Germany, on Wednesday. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-Zentralbild | Jens Büttner

You can find our most up-to-date story here: Storms across Germany spark travel disruption

People living in Germany should expect disruption throughout the day as heavy gusts, rainfall and thunderstorms hit the country in the first major storm of autumn. 

Gale-force winds of over 100 kilometres per hour are possible at times, according to the German Weather Service (DWD).

The DWD said on Twitter that “widespread gale-force to severe gusts (75-90km per hour) and locally gale-force gusts up to 110km per hour” are expected along with heavy showers and thunderstorms. Severe-gale force to hurricane-like winds are possible in some mountain ranges.

Late on Wednesday and in the early hours of Thursday, a low pressure system will move into Germany from the west bringing the storm, DWD said. Meteorologist Tobias Reinartz said that disruption to travel should be expected due to fallen trees and debris. 

Deutsche Bahn warned there may be cancellations and disruption on their rail network due to the weather. Passengers should check before trying to travel. 

The DWD issued an orange storm weather warning (level 2) for most of the country on Wednesday night and Thursday. For some areas a more severe red warning (level 3) is in place. 

On exposed peaks such as the Brocken, the Feldberg in the Black Forest or the Fichtelberg, winds of up to 120km/h are possible, reported Tagesschau. DWD meteorologist Julia Schmidt said that gale-force winds cannot be ruled out on the coasts either.

According to forecasters, the wind will be weaker in the southeast, with gusts of 55 to 75km/h. There may still be showers and thunderstorms there.

Over the course of Thursday afternoon, the wind will decrease from the west, according to the DWD. But it will likely remain stormy in the north into Friday.

On Friday, rain will fall in the northern half of the country and at the edge of the Alps – otherwise there will be mostly sunny spells elsewhere.

On Thursday temperatures will range between 13 and 18C, on Friday mostly between 8 and 13C. Saturday will be similar. A mix of sun, clouds and fog is to be expected, the DWD said. Sunday will bring sun and 12 to 17C. From Tuesday at the latest, more unsettled weather will move in again.

Berlin zoo and parks to remain closed

Due to the storm warnings, the zoo and animal park in Berlin will remain closed on Thursday.

“We know from experience that such storm warnings should by no means be taken lightly,” Zoo and Tierpark director Andreas Knieriem said on Wednesday. The move is to protect guests and animals from falling branches.

The aquarium is scheduled to open as usual. Guests with tickets for Thursday are asked by zoo management to contact them for rebooking.

Several green spaces in the city will also remain closed due to the storm warnings, the state-owned Grün Berlin group said. The Gardens of the World, the Britzer Garten, the Schöneberger Südgelände Nature Park and the Blankenfelde-Pankow Botanical People’s Park will remain closed on Thursday due to the predicted gale-force winds.

The cable car between Kienbergpark and the Gardens of the World in Marzahn will also be suspended. However, Tempelhofer Feld, Park am Gleisdreieck, the Mauerpark extension areas and Kienbergpark will remain accessible, according to Grün Berlin.

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Germany set for scorching temperatures up to 30C

After days of summery weather, temperatures in Germany are set to peak at around 30C this week before a cooler spell over the weekend.

Germany set for scorching temperatures up to 30C

After a long spell of sunny weather, most parts of Germany could see summer arrive early this week with clear blue skies and sweltering temperatures – but the hot weather may not last long, according to meteorologists.

Heat and sunshine should last through the middle of the week but suddenly give way to cooler temperatures over the weekend, the German Weather Service (DWD) predicts.

On Tuesday, most regions see temperatures in the mid to high 20s and a continuation of the dry weather of the past week. In the northeast, including Berlin, the mercury could reach 28C, and temperatures are likely to be between 22C and 28C across western and central areas.

Those in higher altitude regions of the south and those along the north coast should be the only people needing their rain jackets as this part of the country could see scattered showers and clouds, according to DWD.

Wednesday is the day to plan a lake trip as this is likely to be the hottest day of the week. 

Most parts of the country will stay sunny and dry throughout the day and people can expect summery temperatures of between 24C and 30C.

For those on the north coast, it’s likely to be a little chillier, with temperatures of around 15C and partly overcast skies.

Thursday and Friday are likely to bring with them cooler temperatures, with the hot spell giving way to scattered showers and clouds in many regions over the weekend.

On Saturday, southern regions will see highs up of up to 23C while the northern regions will slip down to 18C during the day.

But anyone planning to be out and about on Saturday evening in the south should bring a warm jacket as the mercury could drop as low as 4C. 

Sunny weather Standbad Lübars

A woman enjoys the warm weather at Standbad Lübars in Berlin. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Britta Pedersen

Northern regions ‘too dry’ 

Though most people have been thrilled to see a warm burst of sunshine in the middle of spring, climate experts have been voicing concern about the uneven rainfall across the country.

In an analysis published on the DWD website, the meteorologists claimed that the northern and eastern parts of Germany have been “clearly too dry” in the past weeks.

“A first glance at the current map already reveals that the regional differences of April have continued in May,” they wrote. “In almost all regions of the northern half and in some parts of the centre, hardly more than 10 and in many places not even 5 litres of rain per square-metre fell in the first days of May.”

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How the climate crisis is hitting Europe hard

Though experts had predicted low rainfall, the first 10 days of May have been even drier than predicted.

The lack of rainfall has caused groundwater to dry up significantly, sparking fears of forest fires and drought over summer.

Though more rainfall could come at the end of May, the Weather Channel’s Jan Schenk believes the probability of an overly dry summer is now “very high”.

Schenk believes that predictions for rainfall could have overestimated the amount of precipitation by up to 50 litres per square metre in some areas. This is a reason for households to start saving water now, he told HNA