An outbreak of the norovirus, which can cause severe stomach upset, has forced the popular Klækken Hotel in Ringerike to close for at least four days. Local health authorities reported on Thursday that around 230 people had fallen ill after working and staying at the hotel.
Dr Karin Møller of the local health authority stressed that the closure had nothing to do with hygiene at the hotel itself. Rather it’s believed that a guest at the hotel was sick during a recent visit and infected many others. From there the virus spread.
Authorities initially determined that the virus outbreak was limited on Friday and Saturday to around 25 cases. “But in the course of yesterday and today, we have been informed that the outbreak is much greater,” Møller announced on the municipality’s own website.
That forces “more extensive measures” she said, noting that the hotel will not take in any more guests for the next four days. The hotel’s food was not determined to be a problem, because it’s currently being catered in from outside sources. Møller also noted that the norovirus is common in Norway at this time of year. One of the Hurtigruten ships was hit this week, for example, and had to undergo extensive cleaning before sailing out from Bergen again.
It’s not the first time Klækken Hotel, which is often used for conferences and weddings, has been hit by illness. It also suffered an outbreak of illness in 2012 after more than 300 Christmas party guests fell ill. That was later linked to imported chives served at the hotel.