Ice and snow have melted rapidly in March, bringing a spring-like feel to the weather—but also an increased risk of earlier-than-usual flooding.
Rivers and watercourses were carrying more water than usual for this time of year, according to the Environment Institute, with the spring peak of flooding recorded in the early part of March.
In addition to thinner snow cover, lake ice is also thinner than usual across southern Finland. Although temperatures have dipped again since early March, they have not dropped enough to recover the lost lake ice. Sea ice has also been thinner than normal, and rainfall has been above average in March.
The early spring also helped raise groundwater levels at the start of the year. Although they are now falling again, they remain some 40cm above average.
The Environment Institute is also warning of exceptionally thin lake ice in southern Finland, in the lakes that still have ice cover.