Estonian ministers: State working on eliminating storm damages

  • 2022-12-12
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Extraordinary weather conditions have caused power cuts on both mainland Estonia and islands as well as extreme road conditions and disruptions in ferry service, and government ministers from the Ministry of Economic Affairs affirm that the state is working on resolving the situation and works are underway in cooperation between local crisis committees, the Rescue Board, electricity distribution system operator Elektrilevi and Transport Administration.

Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Riina Sikkut said that an overview provided by Elektrilevi and the Transport Administration proved that the agencies are making an effort to eliminate power cuts and keep roads open, using both their own resources and bringing in additional help.

"Weather conditions have been extraordinary in the past days with major blizzards still expected for Monday evening, therefore, I want to urge people to stay at home if possible. The storm has caused most damage on Saaremaa island where households have been without electricity for several days. Elektrilevi has focused its efforts on the islands with 18 brigades eliminating the outages in Saaremaa and three on Hiiumaa island. Coping without electricity for such a long time is extremely complicated, thus, broader cooperation is required to assist these people," Sikkut said in a press release.

Minister of Entrepreneurship and IT Kristjan Jarvan called on communities to help each other as well as their local government in resolving the crisis.

"There are thousands of families in Saaremaa and Hiiumaa who have been without electricity for a couple of days and a major storm is about to arrive tonight, the impact of which will also be felt on the mainland. Elektrilevi together with the Rescue Board and local governments are working hard to solve the problems but if anyone has a vehicle with good cross-country mobility or a generator they could offer to help resolve the crisis, they should inform their local government. In crisis situations, it is important that we stick together and be ready to help ourselves as well as others," Jarvan said.

The Transport Administration has established a special maintenance regime across the country due to heavy snowfall and blizzard, and all existing resources are being used to keep roads open.