Stockholm snow-blower snatchers on the increase

Heavy snowfall in and around Stockholm is preventing local police from enjoying a quiet pre-Christmas season due to snow-blower snatchers.

According to the Svenska Dagbladet, it seems desperate householders and business owners are beginning to take the matter, and other peoples’ snow-blowers, literally into their own hands in order to clear their drives and forecourts.

Snow-blowers are in short supply since the cold snap and unusually heavy snowfall began. In Tyreso, a southern Stockholm suburb, 18 of the crucial machines have gone missing in the last few weeks. Police officer Borje Holmberg, based in southern suburb Nacka, told Svenska Dagbladet, “having so many thefts is something new for me.”

All forms of snow-clearing equipment are currently hard to come by all over Sweden; even shovels are sold out. As a result, police are advising householders to take more care of their pricey snow-blowing machines, which cost 10,000 kronur and upwards. Police suggest they should be stored in lockable facilities.

The wave of thefts is coinciding with worsening weather reports suggesting more snow is on the way, especially in eastern Sweden along parts of the coastal region. A front is moving in and will sweep north across the area, bringing with it at least 20cm of snow, with high winds causing blizzard conditions.