Risk of wildfires in southern Sweden as temperatures rise
Grass and flowers outside a cabin. File photo: Hasse Holmberg/Scanpix/TT
Increasing temperatures following a long dry spell mean there's a significant risk of wildfires in many of the southern parts of the country.
"It's very dry and there's a risk that fires could start," said Linus Dock at Sweden's state weather forecaster SMHI. "It's quite common at the start of spring, after the snow has melted and the grass from last year has come through."
Spring is always a high-risk time for wildfires if there's little rainfall, as long as the previous year's grass is still on the ground.
"This grass is being replaced at the moment by new grass, and that won't be as easily set alight," Dock explained. "Later, towards the summer, there might be a risk for forest fires instead."
Currently, the biggest risk for wildfires is in the southern Götaland and Svealand region, as well as along the coast in Gävleborg, and SMHI has also issued warnings for dry fields.
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The fire risk is due to a high pressure area with dry air, which has been in place over large parts of the country. But on Wednesday, cloud is forecast to move across the country from the south, which would increase the humidity. In western parts of the country, there may be some rainfall which will also slightly reduce the fire risk.
Although it has been officially springtime, based on Sweden's meteorological definition, in Götaland and Svealand for some weeks, most parts of Norrland are still experiencing winter. In that region, spring has only reached Gästrikland and parts of Hälsingland.
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