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Plane veers off taxiway, roads closed as blizzard sweeps Sweden

Swedish authorities are going all-out to embrace a blizzard that is expected to hit most parts of the country on Wednesday afternoon.

Heavy snow in the morning already caused a jetliner to veer off the taxiway at the airport in Gothenburg and closed many roads in the southwestern region.

“An aircraft belonging to KLM veered off course and got stuck in snow before takeoff and according to the information I have received, there were 124 passengers onboard,” a police spokesperson told TT news agency.

The flight, bound for Amsterdam, was canceled.

Further south, trucks were stopped on the E6 European route as the authorities feared they would not make it across the Hallandsasen ridge, Swedish Television (SVT) reported.

Trains in the area were also canceled and schools were closed, according to local media reports.

The Swedish Transport Administration has urged people to refrain from driving unless necessary and to bring warm clothes and a thermos with warm drinks, should they venture onto the roads.

The authority also decided to close a section of the E22 highway in the southernmost province of Sweden, the same road where around 1,000 vehicles were stuck in snow, some for 24 hours, following a blizzard earlier this month.

Meanwhile, the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) has issued weather alerts for ample snow and strong winds spanning across the country, expecting the blizzard to continue in a northeasterly direction, reaching Stockholm in the afternoon before moving further north.

National train operator SJ alerted travelers to follow the development as they expected disruptions in large parts of the country in the wake of the snowstorm.

“We know from experience that train switches will be covered in snow and that there will be delays,” Dan Olofsson, an SJ spokesperson, told SVT. ■

Famagusta Gazette