Evacuation by sea after landslides in Jølster

Jølster landslidesLandslides and avalanches are commonplace in Jølster, due to the topography. This photo was taken by Magne Frøystad at Ripe when it began to rumble among the rocks between Lunde and Søgnesand. The developing dust cloud soon covered a large area. Fortunately, no one was injured this time. Slides have taken many a life in Jølster, though. Photo: Magne Frøystad / Allkunne.no.

Evacuation by sea after several landslides in Jølster

Several cars are trapped as a result of multiple landslides along the E39 in Jølster municipality in Sogn & Fjordane. “The evacuation is demanding,” the fire department states.

“We experience several landslides due to heavy rainfall and thunderstorms. Several rivers have flooded their banks and washed E39 away at Vassenden. Additionally, some people are trapped between Vassenden and Svidalsneset,” Duty Officer of the Alarm Central Sogn & Fjordane, Jan-Gunnar Holvik, tells NTB around 6.30 on Tuesday afternoon.

So far, three houses have been evacuated. Additionally, one or two cabins are supposedly taken by the first landslide in Jølster on Tuesday afternoon.

The E39 is closed for traffic from Skei to Moskog. That is a distance of 32 kilometres, the Road Traffic Centre Sogn & Fjordane tells NTB.

It has not yet been reported that either humans or animals are injured as a result of any of the landslides. People are, however, encouraged to stay at home and not to travel by road.

May occur in several places

The first report of a landslide was made to Sogn & Fjordane Road Traffic Centre at 4.11 pm.

It is still uncertain how many landslides have been triggered. Nor how large the total scope is. There is bad weather in the area, with heavy rainfall, thunder and lightning.

There is a risk that there will be more landslides in the area, according to both the road traffic and alarm centres.

“Landslides may occur along county road 13 as well. That runs between Moskog in Førde and Dragsvik,” according to Nina Heggernes of the Road Traffic Central Sogn & Fjordane.

Along county road 569, at the Modalen valley in Nordhordland, it also has been a landslide. This at Stokkevika outside Mo. The police notify that asphalt and stones have become unstuck. Large stones on the road make it difficult to pass.



Demanding evacuation

Pictures from Svidalsneset, where the first slide took place, show that the road is covered by large volumes of water. Brown water, twigs and large branches flow over the coastal umbilical road.

The Alarm Centre of Sogn & Fjordane has called in extra staffing. The Central has requested assistance from the Civil Defence. Crisis Management have been set up in both Jølster and Førde.

“People are on their way in boats to evacuate. I don’t know how many people are trapped by the bodies of water, but it might be many. This, because it is the main thoroughfare,” Duty Officer of the Alarm Centre, Holvik, tells NTB.

“People are stuck in cars between several of the races. some houses are also threatened and must be evacuated,” Holvik adds.

Violent weather

The storm appeared suddenly in Jølster and Førde on Tuesday afternoon. It has been very dry in the area for a long time, the soil could thus not absorb the large amounts of water, according to the fire service.

The Main Rescue Centre Southern Norway has dispatched a rescue helicopter to the area where the first landslide went. Helicopters have, according to the police, problems in reaching the area due to rain and lightning.

West Police District notify that they cannot prioritise answering questions from the press. This, due to the large workload. NTB does, therefore, not get a response to its inquiries.

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