Milder weather expected after cold, sunny Sinterklaas

Cold morning in Amsterdam, 5 Dec 2016
Cold morning in Amsterdam, 5 Dec 2016. (Zachary Newmark / NL Times)

After a very cold night, Sinterklaas is celebrating his birthday in cold, but sunny weather across the Netherlands on Monday. During the night temperatures dropped to between -3 along the western coast to -8.8 degrees in Leeuwarden. Maximum temperatures will be around 2 degrees, according to Weeronline.

The northeast of the country my have its first frost day today, with maximum temps expected to be around 1 degree. Temperatures in De Bilt are expected to rise no higher than 2 degrees on Monday, making today the coldest Sinterklaas since 1995. 

Tonight temperatures will again drop to below zero in most of the country, ranging from -5 to -9 degrees. In Zeeland the thermometer stick around 0 degrees due to clouds and warm air streaming into the country. 

Over the past week the weather moved from colder than usual, to milder than usual expected for the upcoming week. Last week Monday Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht and Den Haag all opened extra shelter for homeless people due to the cold weather. Amsterdam annually opens winter shelter for the homeless in the city, this year it happened a few days earlier than the usual December 1st. In total the Salvation Army provided 568 extra shelter places across the Netherlands to survive the cold weather. 

Thousands of people also struggled with cars that won't start, due to batteries that ran empty during the very cold Monday night. The Wegenwacht assisted about 4,200 people having trouble with their car on Tuesday morning last week, about a thousand more than the average Tuesday morning.

These problems are not expected for this week. On Tuesday the milder air will spread across the country, with afternoon temperatures ranging from 2 degrees in Groningen to 7 degrees in Zeeland. 

The rest of the week is expected to be milder than usual for this time of year. It will also be cloudy with occasional showers. Wednesday afternoon temperatures will range from 6 degrees in the northeast to 10 degrees in the southwest. On Thursday maximum temperatures will be between 9 and 12 degrees, and the minimum temperatures may not drop below 7 degrees.