Winter weather hits southern Austria

Areas of southern Austria were pummelled by floods, landslides and half a metre of hailstones yesterday as the region was hit by winter-like conditions.

Winter weather hits southern Austria
A bridge collapse in Styria. Photo: BFVHB

In Styria hailstones the size of golfballs cause widespread damage to crops and, along with intense downpours, led to blockages that caused mudslides.

In the area of Hartberg-Fürstenfeld two bridges had to be blocked off by emergency services after being damaged by the storms and partly collapsing.

Spokesman for the fire service in Leibnitz Herbert Putz also told the ORF that hailstones as wide as four centimetres caused damage to many roofs in the area. In one incident, a man fell from a building’s roof and received injuries to his head after trying to clear up after the storm.

Carinthia was also affected by the storms, with around 70 separate emergencies in the Klagenfurt region.

In Ferlach, a large police operation was launched to find dozens of tourists who went missing in the bad weather while visiting the Tscheppaschlucht adventure park.

They eventually discovered holidaymakers had managed to get on board a bus but had been unable to reach to their parked cars after a mudslide blocked a road.

Photo: FF Ferlach

In Burgenland residents brought out the shovels to help clear roads and paths of hailstones, which had turned the streets white in a matter of minutes.  

Over 2,200 hectares of agricultural land in Burgenland were also damaged from hailstones, with the cost estimated to be over €800,000.

“My garden now looks like it’s been shredded. Vegetables, herbs, flowers and fruit are completely destroyed ,” one resident told the Kurier. “Was it means for farmers and wine-growers, whose income comes from their crops, you can only guess.”

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Forecast: Austria faces sunny weekend but temperatures to drop next week

Despite recent sunny weather, people in Austria will have to brace for wintery temperatures in the coming days.

Forecast: Austria faces sunny weekend but temperatures to drop next week

On Friday, people in Austria woke up to a foggy day that quickly turned into an unexpectedly sunny day with mild temperatures. Still, the country’s weather is about to change, Austria’s meteorologic institute ZAMG said.

Saturday should still have some periods of sunshine, especially in the eastern half of the country – perfect for those who will take part in the Viennese Wine Hiking Day (Wiener Weinwandertag), as temperatures should stay around 15C to 18C during the day.

READ ALSO: Wiener Weinwandertag: Everything you need to know about Vienna’s ‘Wine Hiking Day’

In Vorarlberg and Tyrol, however, it may already start to rain, especially south and along the main ridge of the Alps.

Early temperatures in Austria are expected to be between one and eleven degrees, with lower values in the north and daytime highs of 15C to 21C.

Screenshot from ZAMG

On Sunday, dense clouds will dominate and rain is expected in many places. However, a few sunny spells are quite possible in between, most likely in the north and east of the country.

Mostly weak to moderate winds from south to west. Early temperatures will be between six and twelve degrees and daytime highs between 13 and 18 degrees.

READ ALSO: What’s on: Five things to do in Vienna this weekend

On Monday, sun and partly dense clouds will alternate. In the course of the day, there may be rain showers, especially in the mountains, where the clouds are often thicker.

Early temperatures will be between six and twelve degrees, with daily highs between 13C and 19C.

READ ALSO: Top tips to protect yourself from storms in Austria

Stormy weather from Tuesday

On Tuesday, the unsettled weather will continue. Although there may be sunny spells sometimes, clouds will predominate.

Rain showers are expected in all parts of the country, and it could rain for longer periods in some areas.

Early temperatures are between six and twelve degrees, and daily highs are between eleven and 17 degrees.