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Saturday, May 18, 2024

Storm damage mounts along the coast

At least one car was swept away by a wave, children’s trampolines flew through the air and all forms of transportation were thrown into chaos. Residents along the coast, especially in Nordland County, had lots of mopping up to do on Friday after storms and high tides moved in as predicted during the night.

The storms and high water levels that meteorologists had issued warnings about ended up creating quite a bit of calamity. The operations leader of the Salten Police District, Jon Inge Moen, was among those reporting an extremely busy night answering calls for help.

Strong winds, lots of water
“A car parked near a molo (breakwater) was swept away and then slammed into the wall of the owner’s house,” Moen told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK), describing just one of the incidents that required assistance from emergency crews.

In the city of Bodø, winds were so strong that police had to close parts of downtown around the Scandic Havet hotel and city library. “A plate glass window shattered onto the ground,” Moen said. A trampoline flew right into the window of a private home at Tverlandet, he added, and trees were uprooted in Saltdal.

The winds and slippery roads caused challenges for the driver of a large semi-trailer truck, which ended up jack-knifing on the E6 highway at Sørfold. The Hadsel Bridge in Stokmarknes was forced to close because of high water levels under it, and the wind was so powerful it sent rocks as large as footballs flying through the air and onto roads, Moen said.

More rough weather ahead
On County Road 815 at Vestvågøy, the winds tore down several traffic signs, and a lightpole was also lying across the road Friday morning.

Ferries were cancelled between Bodø, Røst, Værøy and Moskenes. The highway over the mountains of Saltfjellet was closed but opened for traffic again Friday morning. The E10 highway in Nordland also was able to reopen as the storm died down early Friday.

More rough weather was in the forecast, though, as the low-pressure systems moved north and east. Warnings remained up for the counties of Nordland and Troms, with Finnmark residents also told to expect extremely high tides, powerful waves and possible flooding in coastal areas. Berglund



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