Heavy rain on Monday and Tuesday caused rivers around Lillehammer to break their banks, closing the E6 highway at Øyer, flooding road tunnels and spilling water into people’s basements. Emergency services said the worst flooding was at the Lillehammer Helsetun nursing home, where 14 residents were evacuated.
Lillehammer duty fire chief Magne Marstein told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) that crews had finally managed to stop the water flooding into the nursing home, but there was still about half-a-meter high on Tuesday morning. “There is practically a river running through the floor there,” he said.
“It has been a very special night,” said carer Kai Asgeir Sagbakken. “The flood started around four o’clock and came through the top door by the parking lot, and went up to almost a meter on the outside of the door. We were afraid that the door would burst and flood the whole department.”
Emergency services said they’d received reports of water damage to homes, and asked people to try to prepare their homes as well as possible. Lillehammer’s town center was relatively unaffected, with areas to the north including Nordre Ål, Røyslimoen and Vårsetergrenda the worst hit.
Road authorities closed routes including the E6 highway and nearby side roads after the Øyer tunnel flooded. Drivers were warned manhole covers may have shifted, and were told to avoid the worst roads and re-route through Østerdalen. Crews brought in extra personnel and earthworks machinery to try to stem the flow of the floodwater.