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WEATHER

Austria set for more snow as winter weather continues

After weeks of mild temperatures and not enough snow, Austria was covered in white over the weekend. Winter temperatures should continue this week reaching as low as -8C.

Austria set for more snow as winter weather continues
People walk during snowfall in the Schoenbrunn Palace garden in Vienna, Austria, January 23, 2023. (Photo by Alex HALADA / AFP)

The week will be wintry in most of Austria, with daytime temperatures averaging plus 4C, according to the country’s meteorologic institute ZAMG. On Friday, the institute, which was recently renamed Geosphere Austria, forecasts even more snow. 

Temperatures should be milder in the east early this week, but the south and southeast of Austria will see some snow again. By Friday, most of the Alpine country will have wintery conditions, including snow showers.

Mild start of the week in Vienna

On Monday, clouds will continue to predominate. It will frequently snow in the south and up to the centre of the country, regionally also heavily. Otherwise, it will hardly snow or rain. In Northern Tyrol and Vorarlberg, even some sun is possible.

The wind will be light to moderate in the southeast, partly brisk to strong from mainly northerly directions. Early temperatures will range from minus 7C to plus 2C, and daily highs will be from minus 1C to plus 6C.

READ ALSO: Heavy snowfall in Carinthia as winter weather returns to Austria

Snow and rain on Tuesday

On Tuesday, the southern side of the Alps and the southeast will still see frequent rain and snowfall, with the snow line mostly fluctuating between 400 and 800 metres above sea level. 

In the rest of Austria, low cloud layers will persist, from which it may occasionally drizzle. Larger sunny windows are only expected for Vorarlberg and Northern Tyrol.

Temperatures will rise from minus 6C to plus 3C in the morning to a maximum of 0C to 5C.

Sunny weather forecast for Wednesday in the mountains

On Wednesday, sunny weather will prevail in the west and the mountains. Otherwise, there will often be patches of high fog. In the day, these will slowly clear from the mountains.

In the morning, it is mostly minus 6C to plus 1C, and the daytime highs reach minus 1C to plus 4C.

READ ALSO: ‘No one feels like skiing’: Lack of snow hits resorts in Austria and Switzerland

The Hofburg Palace is seen during snowfall in downtown Vienna on January 23, 2023. (Photo by Alex HALADA / AFP)

Snowfall resumes on Thursday

On Thursday, the sun will sometimes shine along with dense clouds on the west and south. Otherwise, it will remain cloudy throughout the day, with light snowfall in the north and east later in the afternoon and evening.

The early temperatures are minus 8C to 0C, and the daytime highs are minus 1C to plus 4C degrees.

From Friday, even more snow

On Friday, clouds will predominate, and intermittent snowfall is also expected in large parts of the country, most along the northern side of the Alps and the east.

Temperatures should be from minus 8C to plus 1 in the morning, but they will rise to minus 2C to plus 3C during the day.

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WEATHER

Thousands of homes in Austria left without power after snowstorms

Heavy snowfall in the south of Austria led to numerous power outages overnight with several roads still closed to traffic on Tuesday morning.

Thousands of homes in Austria left without power after snowstorms

The heavy snowfall in the south of Austria led to malfunctions at almost 190 transformer stations in western Styria during the night on Tuesday. About 4,000 households were without power Tuesday morning, according to Urs Harnik-Lauris, spokesman for Energie Steiermark. 

Additionally, 5,000 households were affected in Lower and Central Carinthia said the provincial energy supplier Kelag. 

In Carinthia, the snowfall had subsided during the night, but still, a few centimetres of snow were added in places Tuesday morning, ORF reported. As a result, schools in the entire district of Völkermarkt and the municipalities of Lavamünd and Preitenegg (district of Wolfsberg) remained closed on Tuesday since the way to school was sometimes simply too dangerous, the authorities said. 

READ ALSO: Energy crisis: What to do in case of a power outage in Austria

About 2,100 firefighters have been on duty in Carinthia since Monday because of the heavy snowfall. In total, there were 570 operations, mainly due to fallen trees and stuck cars and trucks. In the district of Völkermarkt alone, there were 160 operations.

Styria also heavily affected

The snow continued to fall in southern and western Styria on Tuesday.

Since Monday, it has snowed continuously at higher altitudes.

The situation in west Styria came to a head early on Tuesday morning when countless trees could no longer withstand the weight of the snow and fell, damaging numerous power lines.

READ ALSO: What is Austria’s official emergency-warning phone app and do I need it?

More than 4,000 households were without power on Tuesday morning, said Urs Harnik-Lauris of Energie Steiermark: “The situation has worsened significantly. All parts of western Styria are affected.” 

Temperatures dropped significantly in the last few hours, he added.

“Rain has turned into heavy snow, causing trees to fall. At the moment, the centre of damage has moved from Carinthia to western Styria”, according to Harnik-Lauris.

READ ALSO: Who to call and what to say in an emergency in Austria

Weather forecast

On Tuesday it was forecast to rain in the south and the centre of the country until well into the afternoon, according to Austria’s meteorologic institute ZAMG. 

The snow line – above which rain turns to snow was forecast to be between 600m and 900m altitude. 

Forecasters did not predict any snowfall for the region on Wednesday with parts of Carinthia set to see some sun. 

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