Utøya police response time ‘beyond belief’ / News / The Foreigner

Utøya police response time ‘beyond belief’. Further condemnation about the Utøya police operation reveals huge discrepancies between how long it took to stop Anders Behring Breivik and internal procedures. A Norwegian Police Directorate report from 2008 shows “the average response time [between the first alert and arriving at the scene] is 9-10 minutes, relatively independent of population density, geography and county organisation”, reports Aftenposten. It took police 26 minutes to reach Utøya. Several politicians tell the paper they are outraged.

andersbehringbreivik, utoeyashootings, policeresponsetime



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Utøya police response time ‘beyond belief’

Published on Wednesday, 17th August, 2011 at 13:11 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 17th August 2011 at 13:46.

Further condemnation about the Utøya police operation reveals huge discrepancies between how long it took to stop Anders Behring Breivik and internal procedures.

Utøya in the sunset
Utøya in the sunset
Photo: Henrik Lied, NRK/Flickr


A Norwegian Police Directorate report from 2008 shows “the average response time [between the first alert and arriving at the scene] is 9-10 minutes, relatively independent of population density, geography and county organisation”, reports Aftenposten.

It took police 26 minutes to reach Utøya. Several politicians tell the paper they are outraged.

“It’s obvious that it’s a matter of life and death when police are called out to a situation as serious as that of 22 July. Even though we cannot guarantee an actual response time, it has to be better than 30 minutes,” says Jenny Klinge, Centre Party (Sp) representative on the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Justice.

Police are the only emergency service without specific response time demands. Morten Ørsal Johnsen of the Progress Party (FrP) finds it almost “unbelievable that it took almost three times as long. It doesn’t matter whether these exist or not.”

It seems police also broke procedures. According to their “shooting in progress” tactic, the first officers on the scene should intervene with armed mass murderers immediately. However, the initial police patrol on Utøya was deployed to ‘secure the area’ until reinforcements with heavier weaponry arrived and help survivors who came ashore.

Moreover, initial fears Anders Behring Breivik could have killed the officers because they only had handguns now prove to be unfounded. Nordre Buskerud police confirm vehicles are now issued with two-handed MP5 machineguns as standard.

Whilst Buskerud Police District’s Chief of Staff Magne Rustad tries to fend-off criticism, claiming, “Response time in such a large district as ours cannot be compared with those of other, smaller ones”, former Oslo Police Department Director censures police for “not getting to Utøya faster.”

“Several hundred youths were gathered there. The police district should have had a plan for how to reach the island quickly if needed. I am extremely astonished such a long time was needed and that it was so problematic finding boats to get there,” he says.

“Somebody must have made some wrong decisions in the last half hour [of Breivik’s operation],” Mette Yvonne Larsen, lawyer for the family of deceased Karin Elena Holst, 15, who rang her parents just minutes before Breivik was arrested, tells VG.




Published on Wednesday, 17th August, 2011 at 13:11 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 17th August 2011 at 13:46.

This post has the following tags: andersbehringbreivik, utoeyashootings, policeresponsetime.





  
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