Svalbard residents evacuated again

Extreme weather bearing down on Svalbard this week forced the evacuations Tuesday of around 180 residents on the Arctic island of Spitsbergen. Strong winds and even rain were threatening to set off more avalanches on the steep slope behind their homes. The evacuation order came on the second anniversary of an avalanche in the same […]

Svalbard tackles ‘housing crisis’

Bulldozers rumbled onto the sites of abandoned housing in Norway’s Arctic city of Longyearbyen on Svalbard over the weekend. The homes were badly damaged in the latest avalanches to hit Longyearbyen last winter, adding to a housing shortage that some call a “crisis” in the booming outpost. “We have torn down six flats so far,” Frank […]

Three cars caught under an avalanche

Emergency crews saved the lives Thursday morning of the occupants of three cars that were buried under snow and ice after an avalanche crashed down on the E8 highway at Lavangsdalen in Troms County, Northern Norway. More snow and wind were also causing problems on the main highways over the mountains of Southern Norway. Police […]

Two Italian tourists caught in Lyngen avalanche

UPDATED: Another avalanche, this time in the Lyngen Alps of Northern Norway, crashed down on a group of ski tourists from Italy on Thursday afternoon. One was rescued quickly, but the other was caught under the snow for nearly two hours before being found and dug out. Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) reported that the Italian skier […]

Missing tourist found after avalanche

As strong winds continued to pound much of Southern Norway on Wednesday, the rough weather also dramatically raised the risk of avalanches in the mountains. A German skier was missing Wednesday afternoon after slides around Hardangervidda, but later found alive, while a group of high school students had a frightening experience during the night. “Avoid any areas bounded by […]

No one caught in latest Svalbard slide

Authorities on Norway’s Arctic archipelago of Svalbard could confirm Sunday evening that no one was missing or injured by yet another avalanche that slid down a mountainside in an area featuring holiday cottages known as hytter on Sunday afternoon. The area, known as Hjorthamn, is located just across the fjord from Longyearbyen, the main settlement on Svalbard’s […]

Another avalanche rams Longyearbyen

UPDATED: NVE, the state agency responsible for issuing avalanche warnings, admitted it made a mistake Tuesday after more tons of snow, ice, dirt and rocks thundered down on a residental area of Longyearbyen on Norway’s Arctic archipelago of Svalbard on Tuesday. Agency personnel had posted high avalanche danger in other areas but hadn’t expected another […]

Avalanche fences didn’t help in Hammerfest

Three boys out playing were caught in an avalanche that crashed down on their playground in the center of Hammerfest on Sunday. Special snow fences set up along the steep hillside behind the playground didn’t  prevent the slide as expected, reported state broadcaster NRK on Monday. Initial reports from the scene were alarming, with the […]

Avalanche danger hits new heights

Recent sudden changes in temperatures, compounded by strong winds and storms, have raised the danger of avalanches all over Norway. Several crashed down mountainsides on Sunday, and avalanche experts urge skiers and others to be especially careful. “There are very frightening avalanche conditions out there right now,” Espen Nordahl, project leader for an avalanche competence […]

Child’s death deepens avalanche grief

The small resident community on Norway’s Arctic archipelago of Svalbard was mourning the death on Monday of the child who was critically injured in Saturday’s avalanche in Longyearbyen. The death toll thus rose to two, but shocked residents were told some may be able to return to their evacuated homes later in the day. The […]