March tops April’s warmest day in Denmark for first time in 44 years

A rare weather phenomenon has seen Danes shivering in a wintery April after a spring-like March.

March tops April's warmest day in Denmark for first time in 44 years
Photo: Iris

On March 31st this year, the temperature in Denmark was recorded at 21.5°C (71°F). Since then it has not come close, resulting in the rare event of April failing to have a warmer day than its preceding month.

Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) meteorologist Lars Henriksen confirmed Wednesday that the rest of the month is unlikely to see any of the fair weather that graced the end of March.

“I cannot see us beating 17.8°C (64°F), which was the highest temperature in April. There is a slight possibility on Sunday, but I don’t think it will happen,” he wrote on DMI’s website.

The last time March had a higher warmest temperature than April was back in 1973, when the two months topped out at 18.4°C (65°F) and 15.6°C (60°F)  respectively, a difference of 2.8°C (5°F).

That difference is likely to be a more noticeable 3.8°C (6.8°F) this year, according to DMI’s report.

Since DMI records began in 1874, March has had a warmer highest temperature than April on 11 occasions, so the blip in spring weather itself is less unusual than the size of the difference between the two maximums recorded this year, writes DMI. In fact, only one year in the institute’s records, 1884, shows a greater drop in temperatures.

Temperature highs can usually be expected to go up by 6.4°C (11.5°F) between the third and fourth month of the year, writes DMI.

The end of March this year enjoyed a warm flow of air from the south, while April has been dominated by cold westerly winds, says DMI.

The cold temperatures continued to be felt on Wednesday as cold, slippery roads caused 12 accidents within an hour on the same roundabout, an exit off the Djursland motorway at Lystrup near Aarhus.

“They happened almost all at once, but independently of each other. It started with one car losing control and hitting the barrier and then the same thing happened to the others,” duty officer Per Bennekov of East Jutland Police told TV2.

Many Danish motorist have already switched their winter tyres to summer ones not ideal for the present weather conditions, a “dangerous combination”, said Bennekov.

No serious injuries were reported as a result of the accidents.

Both DMI and the police issued warnings encouraging motorists to drive carefully.


How much will it snow in Denmark this weekend?

Winter weather arrived in spectacular fashion to coincide with the beginning of December this week. The weekend could bring more snow to parts of the country but probably less disruption than recent days.

Parts of Denmark have seen heavy snow in early December.
Parts of Denmark have seen heavy snow in early December. Photo: Bo Amstrup/Ritzau Scanpix

Recent snowstorms disrupted North Jutland in particular and Denmark in general, and more cold weather can be expected this weekend albeit severe, according to forecasts.

“We won’t see the Ragnarok-like weather we’ve seen in some places recently again this weekend, but it’s now winter weather and it has also snowed in several places overnight,” said meteorologist Frank Nielsen of the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI).

READ ALSO: IN PICTURES: Early December blizzards disrupt Denmark

Cold weather on Friday and a low front across the North Sea will bring clouds and precipitation across Denmark from the west, Nielsen said.

That will materialise as cold rain or sleet in many areas but probably snow in North Jutland, he said.

“There could be between five and ten centimetres of snow north of the Limfjord,” the meteorologist said, referring to the waterway that cuts across the northern part of Jutland, including main regional city Aalborg.

“In the southern part of the country, an equivalent five to ten centimetres of rain could fall,” he added.

Friday’s temperature will be between freezing point and five degrees Celsius, with the north of the country falling in to the lower end of that range and the south the warmer end.

Mist and fog is forecast this evening, caused by various weather fronts moving over Denmark.

That could still be felt on Saturday morning, though it is likely to be a little warmer at 2-6 degrees Celsius. Mild winds could make that fell chiller, but snow is unlikely.

Sunday will see the temperature drop again, to 0-4 degrees Celsisu. Snow is possible, particularly on eastern coasts.

Strong winds in the east of the country and along the coasts will result in a “rather cold 24 hours,” Nielsen said.

Nighttime temperatures are expected to drop below zero throughout the weekend. Motorists are therefore warned to be alert to icy road surfaces.