A man in his 70s was killed on Thursday when snow being shoveled off the roof of his hytte (cabin) crashed down and buried him under it. He was declared dead at the scene after being smothered by the sudden deluge of snow and ice.
He and a friend, also in his 70s, were clearing heavy layers of snow and ice that had settled on the roof of his hytte at Spåtind in Nordre Land, west of Lillehammer. It’s an winter-time chore for hytte owners, who risk losing insurance coverage if the weight of snow causes a roof to collapse.
The victim’s friend was up on the roof and the hytte owner was on the ground below when a large mass of snow suddenly loosened and slid down on top of him. He was caught under the snow for around 15 minutes before the friend and emergency workers managed to dig him out.
Police described it as “a tragic incident” and the hytte-owner’s friend was offered help from a crisis team. “It’s tragic, but we must inform the public that such accidents can occur,” Frode Øveras, operations leader for the police, told state broadcaster NRK. “There are lots of roofs around the country now with lots of wet snow on them.”