Bitter cold sets in after disruptive snowstorms

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The sun was shining again over much of Southern Norway on Monday, but it wasn’t strong enough or high enough in the sky to offset a new cold front that sent thermometers plunging. Record low temperatures were reported as utility companies scrambled to restore electricity to freezing customers.

State broadcaster NRK reported that striking electrical workers were granted dispensation to return to work to help repair downed power lines that left thousands of households without electricity after the weekend snowstorms. Hundreds were still without power Monday morning in hard-hit areas of Sørlandet, where strong wind and heavy snow Saturday and Sunday sent trees crashing into power lines. Kragerø Energi was allowed to not only call in all available staff but also hire extra help to restore lights and heating to around 247 homes.

Farther east, residents of Folldal at the northern end of Østerdalen woke up to temperatures of minus-29.9C “to be exact,” state meteorologist John Smits told NRK. He said it was the coldest temperature recorded so far this autumn, and unusually cold for November. It was also absolutely freezing at Leirflaten in Heidal, Oppland County, where thermometers showed minus-28.9C. The popular skiing area of Trysil, near the Swedish border east of Hamar and Elverum, reported temperatures of minus-25C as did nearby Drevsjø.

Sub-zero temperatures were expected all week, also in Oslo, where it around minus-6C Monday morning. “It will be wintry weather all week,” Smits said, “and it’s possible to go skiing many places already.” staff