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News digest: Tornado ruled out in pool destruction

Ex-minister announces presidential run, accommodation already booked in ahead Košice marathon, and three positive stories from Slovakia.

Good evening. Here is the Wednesday, August 30 edition of Today in Slovakia – the main news of the day in less than five minutes.

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Tornado in southern Slovakia not confirmed

On Monday night, extremely strong winds destroyed much of the premises of a popular outdoor swimming pool complex in Podhájska, southern Slovakia. The pools will remain closed until further notice and heavy equipment is on site helping remove the debris.

Soon after reports of the damage made headlines, news began circulating that a tornado may have been responsible because damage was limited to the swimming pools premises, while the only signs of a storm in other parts of the village were a number of fallen trees.

“Analysis of radar, weather station data, and damage from the area indicate that a tornado occurred. Apparently, it could have touched down north of the village of Čechy, east of the village of Veľké Lovce, at around 23:05 and then moved towards the swimming pools,” meteorological website iMeteo.sk reported on Tuesday.

But on Wednesday, the Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMÚ) refuted the claim.

“Our analysis shows that the damage, its spatial distribution and the duration of the event correspond to a phenomenon called downburst caused by a strong downdraft from a storm,” SHMÚ expert Miroslav Šinger explained, adding that gusts reached up to 150 km/h, the equivalent of an IF1-level tornado.

Detailed findings will be published later.

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Slovakia and Germany could do things together

German politicians are well aware of who former three-time premier Robert Fico is, says German Ambassador to Slovakia Barbara Wolf. Nevertheless, nobody knows how the result of the parliamentary election on September 30 will affect relations between both countries.

“First of all, I think people have to vote,” the ambassador says in an interview with the Slovak Spectator. As for cooperation with any future government, “we will look at it when we get there”.


Folklore showcase in Bratislava

The ÚĽUV (Centre for Folk Art Production) festival of craftsmen has been bringing folk culture and crafts from all parts of Slovakia to the capital for decades.

It takes places again this coming weekend, with the ÚĽUV presenting Slovakia’s cultural diversity, dialects, customs, the beauty of folk costumes, music, singing, traditional cuisine, and offering a space for direct contact with traditions. For more information, click here (in English).


  • On Wednesday, Slovak President Zuzana Čaputová went to Germany to receive the Emperor Otto Prize. The prize is awarded to figures and institutions for their extraordinary contributions to the European integration process, especially with regards to the states of central, eastern and south-eastern Europe.
  • A prominent political figure in the 1990s, former politician and diplomat Peter Weiss has said that he will not run for president in 2024.
  • Judge Milan Chalupka of the Bratislava Regional Court will face disciplinary proceedings on October 4 after failing to reliably explain the origin of his property to the Judicial Council. In December 2020, the judge opened two bank accounts for his sons, depositing more than €670,000 in them.
  • The Košice Marathon will mark 100 years since it was first run on October 1. Accommodation facilities in the city are either overpriced or booked out ahead of the event. (Korzár)
  • Almost 13,000 people have cast votes for the September 30 elections by mail from abroad so far, the Interior Ministry reported on Wednesday. Envelopes with votes must be delivered to the Interior Ministry no later than Friday, September 29.


Overcast at first, but cloud cover will change throughout the day the. Occasional showers and rain. Daily temperatures between 17 °C and 26 °C. (SHMÚ)

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