Hospitals all over western Norway were taking in persons caught in a dramatic fire in the Gudvang Tunnel on Monday. The most seriously injured were taken to Bergen’s Haukeland Hospital, after a truck caught fire inside one of Norway’s longest mountain tunnels.
The fire was brought under control after a semi-trailer with eastern European registration started to burn about a third of the way through the roughly 11-kilometer-lang tunnel in the county of Sogn og Fjordane.
Motorists driving through the tunnel had to either try to turn around and get out or risk driving by the truck that was on fire. Most of the injured were suffering from smoke inhalation, and taken to hospitals in Voss, Førde, Lærdal and Bergen.
Several of the victims were tourists, some of them on a tourist bus that got caught in the tunnel.”We have many Americans and French here now,” Rolf Abrahamsen director of the hospital in Voss, told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK).
The tunnel was expected to remain closed at least through the rest of the week. The fire is believed to have been sparked by the motor of a truck from Poland that was gutted in the blaze. Around 20 other vehicles were abandoned inside the tunnel including a bus, several camping vans and cars.