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Storm winds batter western Finland, move east – Fresh storm en route

Much of Finland is feeling the force of storm-strength winds on Wednesday. Meteorologists are warning of the risk that power lines might be cut in the extreme conditions, while ferry companies have cancelled services because of the extreme weather. Yle meteorologists also warn of a renewed storm front moving in over the weekend.

Video: median oletuskuva, musta laatikko
Forecast for storm-strength winds passing over Finland. Video: Yle Sää

A storm battering Finland on Wednesday has brought ten-metre waves to the Baltic Sea, causing ferry operators to cancel services. Viking Line has cancelled a run from Mariehamn to Kapellskär, in Sweden, while Wasaline is keeping its ships in port rather than risk the Vaasa-Umeå route.

Viking and Tallink Silja services to Tallinn are operating as normal, however.

The highest waves and strongest winds are in the north of the Baltic Sea, while the waves off Helsinki remain around three metres high.

As of 4pm, some 1,000 households in Häme had electricity supplies cut off by the storm on Wednesday afternoon, hundreds of customers in Central Finland had no power while in south-west Finland some 4,500 customers suffered power cuts.

South and West hit hardest during day, Centre and East overnight

Winds reached storm-strength on Wednesday in the north of the Baltic Sea, with gusts of 27.2 metres per second recorded in the northern Baltic and 20 metres per second off Pori. Western regions of Finland felt the worst of the storm during Wednesday evening, with power cuts caused by the weather system's landfall.

At 7 pm on Wednesday evening, Yle meteorologist Toni Hellinen said that conditions will ease off in the West of the country by Thursday morning, while the storm front moves towards the North and East.

"Eastern Finland will experience the brunt of the rains during the night, and Lapland may get more than 20 cm of snow," Hellinen says.

The storm front moving towards the east may be followed by a new front, moving up from over the North Sea. Hellinen says that the direction taken by the storm may yet change.

"We will have to monitor the situation over the next two days to be certain," he says.

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