The recent spell of warm and dry weather in southeastern Norway has led to exactly what local authorities feared: Fires broke out in several areas over the weekend, some of them caused by careless campers.
Firefighters from Trøndelag to Lommedalen just outside Oslo struggled to gain control over fires in remote areas that required helicopters to dump water from above. Among the more dramatic was the one in Lommedalen, which set hilltops ablaze in Åmotkollene, a range of hills east of the lake Aurevann and not far from holiday cabins and settlements in the nearby suburban valley.
While a fire at Vikedal in Rogaland, Western Norway, was quickly doused, another on the island of Ombo in Ryfylke took firefighters several hours to bring under control.
Police and firefighters repeated warnings of the highest possible danger of forest fires, with local officials imposing complete bans on any campfires or use of portable grills. All it takes, they warn, is one spark to start a forest fire with conditions as dry as they are now.
Only Northern Norway is exempt from the bans because of cold and stormy weather that included rain and even some snow over the weekend.