Power outages

Major power outages are fairly unusual in Sweden, but may occur because of storms, large amounts of snowfall, or technical failures. Major power outages affect not only lights and electrical appliances, but in some cases also heating, water, phone service, and computer communication.
Photo: Johan Eklund, MSB.

Prepare for power outages

  • Locate your nearest fire station. They can help you call the emergency number 112 if phone services should fail.
  • Ask your municipality about where information centres, warming centres and drinking water will be available in case of major power outages.
  • It is a good idea to have a radio powered by batteries or solar cells at home.
  • Listen to Sveriges Radio P4, which is the emergency channel that will broadcast information about the outage, sometimes also in English. Radio Sweden provides information in English and broadcasts on the channels P2, P6 and on the web. Read more here.
  • Make sure to have flashlights and spare batteries.
  • It is a good idea to have candles and tea lights at home.
  • Get power banks for mobile phones, tablets and computers.
  • Make sure you have enough non-perishable food at home, for instance tinned goods.

If you are affected by a power outage

  • Contact your electricity provider or your municipality for more information.
  • In case of a major power outage, you can call the national information number in case of major accidents and crises, 113 13. There you can get information in English. If you are using a foreign mobile phone, call +46 77 33 113 13.
  •  If you have a heating stove, use it to provide warmth. Candles and tea lights also provide warmth, but be aware of the risk of fire. Make sure you have proper ventilation.
  •  In case of prolonged power outages, you should store water in bottles or other containers, since power outages often result in water outages. You can also collect drinking water at designated tapping locations.
  •  Your home can quickly become cold in case of a power outage. It may be a good idea to stay in a single room and keep it warm. In cases of severe cold, the municipality will often open warming centres.

Mobile phones and power outages

A power outage may affect internet and phone services. The base stations are usually equipped with backup power. The amount of reserve power varies depending on the phone operator and the location.

  • As long as any operator’s network functions in the area, the emergency number 112 can be reached. Remove the SIM card from your phone and then dial 112. In the event of a prolonged power outage or a severe telecommunication outage, you may have to head to the nearest fire station to make an emergency call.
  • Stay up to date with the latest information from the municipal authorities on Sveriges Radio’s radio station P4. Here you find a table of frequencies for Swedish radio stations
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