Forest fire at Sotra still not under control

Forest firePhoto: Marit Hommedal / NTB
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On Friday morning, it was first reported that the forest fire at Sotra was under control, but after a short time, the fire service reported that the fire flared up again. 

Just after 7 am, the fire brigade reported that they do not have full control over the fire.

“We are doing everything we can to prevent it from flaring up again. It is extremely dry, and the wind is a factor that plays a big part in fires like this,” operations manager Pål Hansen in the fire service told newspaper Bergensavisen.

The wind makes the situation difficult. The Meteorological Institute reports that the wind is picking up on Friday at 10 AM.

“We are placing crews in the places where we expect the fire to meet us when it starts blowing again,” Hansen said.

Two houses damaged

The first reports of the fire came at noon on Thursday, and large forces moved out. Around 150 fire crews from ten fire stations have participated in the firefighting work along with the Civil Defense.

“The emergency services were present in the area last night. The police have assisted us in blocking off areas, securing valuables, and dealing with evacuees. During the morning hours on Friday, crews will be rolled out, and a helicopter will also be deployed,” operations manager Steinar Hausvik in the Western Police District said.

It first started to burn at Fjæreidepollen on Sotra. Then the fire spread north, among other places, to Dalaskjenet, where a house began to burn before it flared up in Kårtveitpollen a few kilometers further north.

In all, two houses were damaged by the flames.

Investigation launched

The police want tips from the public that can help uncover the cause of the fire. An investigation has been launched to find out the cause, and forensic technicians will be sent to the area where the fire started.

“We have started an investigation and are trying to understand what happened and how the fire started. We will go broad and try to map whether a natural phenomenon causes the fire or whether someone started it,” section leader Sven Erik Midthjell at Askøy and Øygarden sheriff’s office told newspaper Bergensavisen.

He emphasized that they have no indication that the fire may have been started.

More than 500 people from several areas nearby have been evacuated.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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