Around 4,500 sports fans and a few troublemakers, many of the latter drunken teenagers, defied public health officials’ orders to stay away from the annual Holmenkollen Ski Festival in Oslo over the weekend. Police and Red Cross volunteers had to deal with the youngsters who were intoxicated, quarrelsome and too thinly clothed for the damp and chilly weather.
“We were busy from 10am, when the first person had to be carried out of the forest, 15-16 years old,” Arve Røtterud of the Oslo Police District told state broadcaster NRK on Saturday. “There were many more cases like that.” Around 20 by noontime, NRK later reported.
“There were lots of fights,” Rotterud said, adding that one teenager was arrested after breaking another’s nose.
Many people had camped out in the woods along the ski trails for the men’s and women’s World Cup races that weren’t cancelled even though the spectator arenas were ordered closed to the public. It’s traditional for cheering fans to line the trails, and a few thousand did despite warnings to stay away because of Corona virus fears.
Most of them behaved well, according to police, but rowdy youth did not. Anders Ourstorp of the Red Cross said told NRK that “we unfortunately had to take care of many minors who were overly intoxicated. Several were nearly unconscious and had to be driven out on four-wheel tractors. Their parents were summoned to take them home.