Haapsalu-Noarootsi ice road open for some 3 hrs before being closed due to thaw

Noarootsi jäätee.

PHOTO: Urmas Lauri / Lääne Elu

The Estonian Road Administration before noon on Friday opened this year's first ice road between the northwestern regional capital of Haapsalu and the Noarootsi peninsula but closed it approximately three hours later due to warm weather and a high traffic load.

"In connection with a thaw and an unexpectedly high traffic load, the Haapsalu-Noarootsi ice road will be closed from Friday afternoon. The reopening of the ice road will be announced," spokespeople for the Road Administration told BNS.

The ice road, which was opened at 11 a.m. and closed at 2 p.m. on Friday, begins off Vasikaholmi Beach in Haapsalu and terminates near the jetty in Noarootsi's Osterby Harbor, at the end of the Nommkula-Aulepa-Osterby road. The length of the ice road is approximately four kilometers. Vehicles with an actual mass of up to 2.5 tons will be permitted to drive on the Haapsalu-Noarootsi ice road.

Spokespeople for the Road Administration told BNS that the authority is planning to open an ice road to the island of Piirissaar next and is currently carrying out ice surveillance on the route between Piirissaar and Laaksaare on Lake Peipsi. "Further research on other ice roads will not be done before a new cold," spokespeople said.