Cyclone “Yaroslav” tears through Vidzeme region of Latvia

On Sunday Vidzeme experience one of the most powerful storms in ten years. Usually only coastal areas experience winds of over 25 meters per second, but on this occasion even inland areas experienced strong winds.

The fast-moving cyclone, which the German meteorological service named “Yaroslav”, began on Sunday morning in the southern part of Sweden. It moved east over the Baltic sea, reaching Kurzeme by midday. The Liepāja port experienced winds of 27 meters per second, while Ventspils saw 25 meters per second wind, which is normal for the area.

The cyclone gained strength as it moved east, with Salacgrīva experiencing winds of 30 meters per second. It stayed strong as it moved inland in Vidzeme, maintaining winds of 25-27 meters per second, which is very rare.

Winds caused widespread damage, tearing down thousands of trees and leaving around 10,000 households without electricity. A few cities in Vidzeme experienced a total blackout on Sunday night. According to the State Fire and Rescue Service, by 19:00 on Sunday rescuers had received more than 150 calls related to the storm damage.

The news agency LETA estimates that this storm has caused the greatest damage since the powerful thunderstorm on August 12, 2017. On that occasion the State Fire and Rescue Service received more than 220 calls related to the storm damage.

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