Tag Archives: evacuation

ANOTHER EVACUATION EXTENSION, ANOTHER AVALANCHE: Mountainside of Nybyen off-limits for another week; risk-level for area drops, but avalanches still happening

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An evacuation of the mountainside buildings and traffic ban on the snow trail in Nybyen was extended for a third week on Thursday afternoon by The Governor of Svalbard, just a few hours before the latest of numerous avalanches in recent weeks was observed in the well-traveled valley of Fardalen southeast of Longyearbyen.

Nobody was caught in the avalanche and the risk-level for the entire region has been lowed to Level Two (“Moderate”) as of Thursday. The Nybyen evacuation was ordered when there was a Level Four risk level – one below the maximum – due to snow and wind that resulted in cornices up to seven-meters high on the mountains at the south end of town.

WHAT PART OF ‘CLOSED’ DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND? Snowmobile tracks found at Mine 2B despite avalanche ban – on same day one is seen nearby; barriers now blocking route

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Photo by Elizabeth Bourne

Some snowmobilers took a ride to the off-limits Mine 2B in Nybyen and yet another avalanche was triggered from the dangerously snow-laded mountains on Sunday – although fortunately for the trespassers not at the same time.

But the city, accepting the reality that some people obviously can’t grasp reality themselves, set up barricades on the snow trail after the tracks were spotted in order to make it clear the area is extra-extra off-limits.

ANOTHER EVACUATION OF NYBYEN (AND THIS ONE MAY BE LENGTHY): Massive buildup of hanging snow means buildings near mountains must be vacated ‘until further notice’

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An evacuation of the mountainside buildings in Nybyen for a third straight weekend – and one whose length will be measured in weeks – has been ordered as of 6 p.m. Friday due to large cornices overhanging the mountains (click link for video) due to heavy snow accumulation in recent weeks, The Governor of Svalbard announced at midday Friday.

The evacuation order, which affects 117 people mostly in student dorms and tourist lodging such as Gjestehuset 102, is until further notice.

“We will make weekly assessments of the situation, and the evacuation and the traffic and residence ban, but we emphasize that it is very uncertain when this can be lifted,” Gov. Kjerstin Askholt said in a prepared statement. “Consideration for life and health always comes first.”

The evacuation also has longer-term implications for the area since for many years it has been classified as a high-risk area and private entities, not the city, are responsible for the safety of the occupants.

EASTER EVACUATION ENDS: Two-day residential and traffic ban in Nybyen and Lia due to avalanche risk cancelled

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An evacuation of the mountainside buildings in Nybyen, plus a traffic ban in that area and the Lia neighborhood, was cancelled Monday afternoon by The Governor of Svalbard.

EVACUATION OF NYBYEN ORDERED BY 7 P.M. SATURDAY: Major storm Easter Sunday means mountainside buildings must be vacated until at least Monday, governor says; also applies to Lia

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An evacuation of the mountainside buildings in Nybyen and a ban on traffic in a portion of Lia – the same two areas evacuated for four days beginning last week – has been ordered by 7 p.m. Saturday by The Governor of Svalbard due to a major blizzard forecast Easter Sunday. In addition, the road between Nybyen and Longyearbyen School will be closed.

The evacuation will remain in effect until at least Monday morning, according to a statement by the governor.

EVACUATION LIFTED FOR NYBYEN/LIA: Residents/guests can return as of 11 a.m. Tuesday; governor says local avalanche risk still elevated, urges caution for those on excursions

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A four-day evacuation of part of Nybyen, and a traffic ban on snow trails there and the Lia neighborhood near downtown Longyearbyen, has been cancelled as of 11 a.m. Tuesday, according to The Governor of Svalbard.

NYBYEN EVACUATION CONTINUES UNTIL TUESDAY: Unstable snow slops after weekend storm, plus large avalanche Sunday, means fourth day of building and traffic ban; also upheld at Lia

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An evacuation of the buildings along the mountainside of Nybyen and a traffic ban on the snow trail there, along with a similar access ban in Lia near downtown Longyearbyen, is being extended until at least Tuesday, The Governor of Svalbard announced after a midday assessment of slope conditions Monday.

EVACUATION OF NYBYEN EXTENDED UNTIL MONDAY: Avalanche risk expected to remain high through weekend; traffic ban at Lia also extended

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An evacuation of student dorms and tourist lodging in Nybyen is being extended until Monday due to ongoing avalanche threats posed by strong winds and snow accumulations, The Governor of Svalbard announced Saturday afternoon.

FLEE FOR YOUR LIFE 101: Avalanche season is coming – overview of evacuation and other procedures offered by emergency officials Monday

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If you haven’t experienced the adrenaline rush of being ordered to immediately abandon your home, recent history suggests it’s a near certainty if you’re living in certain areas during the coming winter. And your preparations should involve more than throwing a toothbrush and clean underwear in an overnight bag.

ALERT: Upper homes/lodging in Nybyen evacuated, other access limits in town imposed due to weather-related avalanche risks; (UPDATE: Order lifted as of noon Saturday)

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Update 2 p.m. Saturday: The evacuation order was lifted as of noon Saturday, according to The Governor of Svalbard. Vei 300 between Huset and the old museum is still closed until after Easter weekend.

Original story: An evacuation of Gjesethuset 102 and other buildings near the mountainside in Nybyen, along with access restrictions in other at-risk areas of Longyearbyen, was ordered by The Governor of Svalbard on Friday evening due to rain and above-freezing temperatures that are causing a variety of problems for people trying to get about.