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Storm winds bring rain, sleet and milder temperatures to Finland

The storm may cause damage in the south and west, where the ground is not frozen.

Aallot iskevät Märketin rantakallioon
Strong winds began hitting Finland's maritime areas on Saturday afternoon. Image: Tiina Cavén / Yle

A wide swath of precipitation is moving across most of Finland on Saturday evening and into Sunday. The south and west will get mostly rain, with snowier conditions elsewhere.

On Saturday evening, brisk winds and rain began lashing Finland's southwest and west coasts. Rain and sleet are set to continue through Sunday morning in southern and central areas.

The large storm system is projected to move off to Russia by early Sunday afternoon. Partial clearing is possible later in the day in central Finland.

Temperatures are likely to rise to between +1 and +6 degrees Celsius through most of the country, but remaining between zero and -8 in Finnish Lapland.

Driving conditions becoming poor through most of Finland on Saturday evening due to snow or slush.

Winds may wreak havoc

Winds are becoming strong and gusty on all sea districts as well as on land in southern and western Finland.

The Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) warns of gale-force winds of up to 24 metres per second and very rough seas with significant wave height of over four or even five metres on many maritime districts.

Early on Saturday evening, gusts of 26 metres a second were recorded in the Archipelago, with sustained winds of 22 mps on Kökar, an island municipality in Åland.

Gusts on land areas may reach 20 mps in western Finland and later in the Uusimaa province, which includes the Helsinki region.

"Since the ground is not frozen hard except in Lapland, the winds may cause damage in the south and west," warns Yle meteorologist Kerttu Kotakorpi.

Wet snow may fall north of Pirkanmaa, which includes Tampere, while only Lapland will likely receive proper snow.

Parts of the west coast may get 20 millimetres of rain, with the heaviest precipitation expected between Turku and Vaasa.

After the storm passes, temperatures in the south may rise to an unseasonable +6 degrees, accompanied by drizzle, mist and fog. The mercury will only remain below freezing in Lapland.

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