Bad weather leads to closed mountain passes

GOLGOL.Photo: Kyrre Lien / SCANPIX

Strong winds, snow and blizzards will create difficult driving conditions in southern Norway on Thursday and Friday. Several mountain passes have already been closed.

The Meteorological Department has issued a warning (OBS) forecast for eleven counties due to the expected Christmas storm that is approaching. When a great deal of rainfall is expected at lower altitudes,it means snow in the higher areas where mountain passes are located.

The combination of wind, snow and poor visibility, as well as closed mountain passes, will mean long queues of motorists on their way home for Christmas.

‘It’s snowing densely in some places, and throughout the day, it’s expected that wind will increase. This leads to the danger that several mountain passes will be restricted to a single lane, or be closed completely’, said traffic operator, Kjetil Larsen, at the Road Traffic Management Centre, to the newspaper BergensAvisen.

Early on Thursday morning, there was already a traffic jam on Highway 7, over Hardangervidda, while both Highway 13 over Vikafjellet, and the county road (fylkesvei) 50 between Aurland and Hol are closed.

In Nordland, the ferry service between Bodø and Værøy is closed because of a storm. Due to weather conditions, Highway 77 over Graddis is also closed on the Swedish side.

It is expected that the wind will increase throughout the day on those mountain passes that are now open.

Therefore, it’s highly uncertain how long Highway 52 over Hemsedalfjell, and the European routes, 134 and 16,over, respectively, Haukeli and Filefjell, will be open to normal traffic.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today