As Norwegians continue clearing up in the wake of severe storm ‘Dagmar’, emergency services discovered one person dead following communications problems.
Leaving over 100,000 without electricity, the severe storm also knocked out 390 of Telenor’s base stations. Approximately 40,000 people on the west coast had no mobile or landline coverage.
“We have had an incident where a family could not contact the emergency service by phone, and had to drive out to get the ambulance. The patient was dead when the ambulance arrived,” Bjørn Morten Øen, head of Helse Førde emergency preparedness, told NRK.
He underlined it is unsure whether a quicker arrival under normal communications circumstances could have saved the patient’s life, but continued, “most likely, this [the death] occurred as a result of the bad weather, and those who tried to contact us not having coverage". An inquiry is now to be launched.
Several thousand people in Trøndelag, Møre og Romsdal, Hordaland, Sogn og Fjordane, Hedmark, and Oppland were still without electricity and phones this morning.
Calling what happened at the weekend “terrible” Minister of Justice Grete Faremo is visiting the Sunnmøre region in the county of Møre og Romsdal today, worst hit by ‘Dagmar’, to see the extent of the damage for herself. She will also talk to officials about ongoing progress in restoring normal services.
Meanwhile, Opposition politicians are branding the more than two-day telephone outages as being “completely unacceptable”.
“The past two days have been extremely tough for many, so bad that people have been frightened. 50 hours without a telephone connection is just preposterous ,” says Conservative (H) MP Bjørn Lødemel.
In transport news, state railway company NSB says there are no services between Myrdal and Flåm due to a landslide. No alternative transport is possible. Here are some external links (in Norwegian) for the latest on the roads and ferries Tide and Fjord1.
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