Extreme weather Birk leads to destruction in Western Norway

Full Storm alerts Rough WeatherStormy weather on the coast. Photo: pixabay.com

Extreme weather Birk leads to destruction in Western Norway

Extreme weather Birk has led to flooding, floods and landslides several places in Hordaland and Rogaland.


Insurance companies have already noticed the consequences of the extreme weather Birk, and the first claims have ticked in.

– Early Saturday morning we had registered about ten claims, most from the Bergen area. None of these are major claims, says Torbjørn Brandeggen, communications consultant at Tryg Forsikring, who expects the number to increase significantly.

The insurance company Frende has also received claims due to extreme weather – from Bergen, Stord, Nordhordland and Askøy.

– Mostly, we’re talking about basements filled with water, says communications manager, Heidi Tofterø Slettemoen,

Landslides and closed roads

The Meteorological Institute sent out extreme weather forecasts for Rogaland and Hordaland on Christmas Eve, and the extreme weather Birk has been ravaging the two counties.

Just before two thirty pm on Saturday a landslide closed the European route 134 in Etne, in the south of Hordaland, reports NRK. Several county roads are also closed due to flooding.

In Rogaland, county road 520 at Svandalsfossen is closed due to flooding and poor visibility, reports the road administration.

The hamlet Fimreite on the south side of the Sogne fjord is without road connection after a landslide has occured on county road 214 between Valeborg and Fimreite. The road will not be opened today, writes West police district on Twitter.

The police in Agder report that several trees have been blown into roads. They encourage people in windy places in southern Norway to secure loose objects.

– Trampolines, spades and such have caused material damage this far, writes the police on Twitter.

Record in Bergen

In Rogaland and Hordaland, between 100 and 150 millimeters of rainfall is expected locally during the 24 hours from Friday evening to early Saturday night.

The weather has already made for a new daily rain record for December in Bergen. Itis measured 93.9 millimeters of rain at the Florida station in the last 24 hours. The previous daily record for Bergen in December was measured at 89.7 millimeters in 2004, the Meteorological Institute writes on Twitter Saturday morning.

The fire department had to make 77 sorties on Saturday due to the immense rain, writes Bergens Tidende.

Immense rain

– It is gray and dreary in Bergen – not exactly a Christmas atmosphere, says Meteorologist at Meteorological Institute, Lars Andreas Selberg to NTB. He says that in addition to the major precipitation in Bergen, 102.2 millimeters have been measured at the Svedal station in Sogn og Fjordane and 127.5 millimeters at the Gullfjellet station in Hordaland.

– The weather front is still over Western Norway and it is still raining, says the meteorologist. He says that the extreme weather is going to subside during the day and evening.

Landslide and flood warnings

The Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE) reports a huge danger of avalanches in Rogaland on Christmas Eve. The hazard warning level is at four for avalanches in Rogaland, and orange warning level for flooding and landslides in Hordaland.

Additionally, flood and landslide at the orange warning levels has been issued, the second highest level, for parts of western Norway due to the high amount of precipitation.

Even though the extreme weather has subsided during the Christmas Eve, it will probably continue to rain along the coast on Christmas Eve. Inner coast levels have greater chances for a white Christmas.

– Snow will fall at lower height in inner areas, says meteorologist Selberg.

© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today