Autumn weather comes to Germany following weekend highs

After sunny skies this weekend, temperatures around the Bundesrepublik are dropping this week - with the strongest change slated for Tuesday.

Autumn weather comes to Germany following weekend highs
Sunrise of the Stuttgart Airport on Monday morning. Photo: DPA

Classic autumn weather is returning to Germany, with rain, fog and wind striking even the warmest regions of the country.

The weekend saw the last days of summer weather.  On Sunday there were temperatures of up to 29.8C, reported the German Weather Service (DWD) – but no record highs were reached as was repeatedly the case over the summer.

Parts of the country came close, however. In southern Freiburg, for example, the previous maximum temperature of 30.8C for a September 15th from 1964 was missed by about one degree.

Monday blues

On Monday, northern Germany is slated to see a lot of rain, with temperatures hovering between 15 and 20C. Grey and cloudy weather will come to the centre of the country. 

North of the Moselle and Main rivers will have heavy cloud cover and occasional rainfall.

Cloudy skies could be seen at 6:30 am this morning in northern Hamburg, central Frankfurt and the community of Hohenpeißenberg in Bavaria.

In the south, on the other hand, temperatures will stay sunny for longer, with averages of between 20 and 28C.

Shifting temperatures on Tuesday

Throughout Germany temperatures will drop on Tuesday, predicts DWD. In some parts of the country, the mercury could dip as low as 5C in the early morning, particularly in northern Germany. 

Heavy wind will also hit the north – at the expected climax on Tuesday, stormy gusts of up to 65 km/hour are expected, with wind speeds between 80 and 90 km/hour coming to the coast – “the first autumn storm,” said Robert Hausen of DWD in a statement.

Both northern and eastern Germany are predicted to see showery weather – sometimes accompanied with lightening and thunder – at temperatures between 14 and 25C.

Throughout the day, there will be a mix of sun and clouds, with the sun shining the longest in the southwest. 

But the cold shift will also come to southern Germany on Wednesday. In the Mosel and Allgäu, the weather will remain dry, but temperatures are predicted to dip to around 20C, or about 10 degrees cooler than they were on Sunday.

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Western Germany hit by second round of severe storms

Parts of Germany were once again pummelled by heavy thunderstorms on Monday - just days after the city of Paderborn was struck by a devastating tornado.

Western Germany hit by second round of severe storms

A severe weather warning was issued on Sunday by the German Weather Service (DWD), who cautioned residents in western and southwestern regions of the country that fierce gusts of wind, hailstones and heavy rain could once again be on the horizon.

A  second tornado could “not be ruled out” in the southwestern regions of the country, DWD warned. 

North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and Rhineland-Palatinate, were struck by heavy rain and hailstorms and strong gusts of wind throughout the afternoon.

However, the worst of the thunder and hailstorms warnings were for the state of Baden-Württemberg. 

Here, DWD issued a Stage 3 weather warning – the second highest possible. Severe thunderstorms with gale-force winds at speeds of up to 110km per hour were forecast, with up to 50 litres of rain per square metre falling in a short space of time.

According to the meteorologists, the storms are expected sweep across to the eastern regions of the country and ease off in the evening.

The storms and severe weather warnings came days after the city of Paderborn in North Rhine-Westphalia was hit by a devastating tornado.

According to the local fire brigade, 43 people were injured in the storm, with 13 of them needing to be hospitalised and one person reportedly fighting for their life. 

Railway services were cancelled across many parts of the west over the weekend, but resumed again on Monday.

Air travel in some parts of the country was also affected, with Frankfurt Airport in the central state of Hesse saying there was disruption to flights on Friday. 

Videos posted on social media depicted the strongest part of the tornado tearing through the city, ripping trees up by their roots.

The damage to infrastructure and buildings caused by the storm is estimated to be in the millions.

Schools remain closed

As of Monday, several schools and nurseries remained closed in both Paderborn and nearby Lippstadt due to fears that the buildings couldn’t be safely entered.

In the small town of Lippstadt alone, five nurseries and seven schools were closed for repairs on Monday, with administrators unable to say when they would reopen their doors.

“Given the extent of the damage we see at the various locations, it is currently unthinkable that classes can be held there in the next few days,” said Mayor Arne Moritz (CDU).

In Paderborn, meanwhile, drones were exploring five closed school buildings to check whether there was a risk of damaged roofs imploding. The streets where the schools are located have been closed off to the public and the police are believed to be patrolling outside to stop anyone entering.

READ ALSO: Tornado in western Germany injures dozens

Damaged roof in Paderborn

A damaged roof in the aftermath of the Paderborn storms. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Lino Mirgeler

More frequent tornadoes? 

Tornadoes aren’t infrequent in Central Europe, but recently appear to be gaining in frequency and intensity, which experts suggest could be a result of climate change. 

In June 2021, a deadly tornado swept through several villages in the Czech Republic near the Slovakian and Austrian borders, killing six people and injuring a further 200. 

At time, climatologists pointed out that until 2020, the Czech Republic only saw a handful of tornadoes each year – and most of them were relatively mild.

Speaking to WDR on Sunday, climate researcher Dr. Mojib Latif drew a direct parallel between warmer temperatures and more violent and regular storms.  

“In Germany there are approximately between 20 and 40 tornadoes per year,” he told the regional media outlet. “We have to reckon with that. As the climate gets warmer and thunderstorms become more violent, the frequency of tornadoes will also increase.”

However, some experts have been more cautious about drawing a direct link.

“That simply cannot be determined at the moment,” meteorologist Jürgen Schmidt told RND. 

Schmidt thinks the perception that tornadoes have increased in recent years could have a slightly more prosaic explanation.

The fact that people are able to record them on their smartphones and share these images more widely could contribute to this impression, he said. 

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How the climate crisis is hitting Europe hard