Weather warnings issued as violent "double storm" sweeps over Germany
Prepare yourself for a windy rest of the week as what meteorologists have dubbed a “double storm” sweeps over Germany, bringing hurricane-force gusts, thunderstorms and heavy bouts of rain.
Ylenia and Zeynep: Storm weather warnings issued for whole of Germany
The German Weather Service (DWD) has issued weather warnings for the entire country, with the more severe Level 3 warning covering the northern half from just above Düsseldorf to just below Erfurt and Dresden. The DWD wrote in its daily update on Wednesday morning that the weather would remain unstable and mild this week, with “two hurricane lows [bringing] a fully-fledged storm situation in Germany from Wednesday night to Saturday.”
"It starts in the northwest and then moves southeast to about the middle of Germany," said meteorologist Adrian Leyser. The first storm has been nicknamed Ylenia, and the second Zeynep.
RTL meteorologist Patrick Panke warned, “From Wednesday evening to Saturday morning, a heavy storm system is blowing over Germany. Disruption to road and air traffic, as well as local and long-distance transportation, is to be expected. But pedestrians must also be careful both in built-up areas and in forested areas. If you don’t have to go out, it’s better to stay at home.”
Storms will peak on Thursday and Friday
According to the DWD, the first harbingers of the storm already arrived in Germany on Tuesday, but the wind will really pick up during the course of the day on Wednesday, with stormy gusts blowing at speeds of up to 80 to 100 kilometres per hour, even on the lowlands. At higher altitudes, the speed could exceed 140 km / h.
The storm will reach its peak on Thursday, with gusts of up to 115 km / h predicted across the country, and up to 180 km / h on exposed peaks like the Brocken. The wind will be accompanied by bouts of heavy rain and even some snowfall on low mountain ranges. Commuters can look forward to disruptions on public transport and Germany’s roads. Deutsche Bahn has said that long-distance tickets bought for travel on Thursday and Friday can be used flexibly for the next few days or cancelled free of charge.
Classes cancelled in North Rhine-Westphalia, floods expected in north Germany
The Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH) is warning that the severe storm could cause flood surges along the East Frisian Coast, the North Frisian coast, and in the Weser and Elbe areas. Residents are being urged to download the warning app NINA on their mobile phones and follow instructions given by the app.
In North Rhine-Westphalia, classes have been cancelled at all primary and secondary schools on Thursday, out of safety concerns. This was confirmed by State Schools Minister Yvonne Gebauer on Wednesday.
In Berlin, authorities warned people from entering parks on Wednesday and Thursday due to rotten trees. The zoo in Germany's capital city will also close on Thursday for security reasons.
Second storm to hit northern Germany on Friday night
After a brief respite on Friday, a second storm will hit, according to the meteorologists’ predictions. During the course of the day, the wind will gradually pick up strength again and reach gale force by around midday. The forecast isn’t completely certain yet, but it’s possible that Friday’s storm could be even more violent than Thursday’s, with the risk of storm surges and hurricane-force gusts.
The wind should calm down during the course of Saturday, but gale-force gusts in the southwest of the country and on the northern coast are still possible. According to the DWD, conditions could remain wild and windy until at least Sunday or Monday, especially in central and southern Germany - perhaps it’s best to sit this one out at home.