The Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMÚ) issued several warnings against strong wind for all of Slovakia on January 17. In some districts, the highest, third-degree warnings against wind are in place in the mountains. The police have also published several recommendations and warnings.
Third-degree warnings against strong wind in the mountains apply especially in the Žilina and Banská Bystrica regions, but also for districts within the Prešov region. SHMÚ noted that wind at altitudes above 1,800 metres could reach speeds of 110 to 120 kilometres per hour; gusts could even reach 160 to 180 kilometres per hour.
The Mountain Rescue Service does not recommend going on hikes because of the strong wind.
“It is extremely dangerous in such conditions,” the Mountain Rescue Service wrote on its website. “That’s why we do not recommend any activities in the mountain terrain, nor at lower altitudes.”
Extremely strong wind can reach the strength of a hurricane in the mountains and be mixed with snowfall.
Windy in all of Slovakia
People should prepare for strong wind in almost all of Slovakia, not only in the mountains. Second-degree warnings apply for the Bratislava, Nitra and Trnava regions. In these localities, the wind could average 60 kilometres per hour; gusts could reach 85 to 100 kilometres per hour.
The second-degree warnings against wind are valid between 10:00 until the evening hours and the third-degree warnings in the mountains apply between 10:00 and 20:00.
First-degree warnings against snow drifts also apply in the Žilina, Prešov, Košice and Banská Bystrica regions.
The police have cautioned drivers to avoid parking their cars under trees and driving at fast speeds. They also recommend people close all the windows in their homes, secure garden furniture on balconies and terraces, avoid walks in the forests, and stay clear of fallen electricity poles and wires.