• Norway's news in English
 

Dozens injured at Oslo Bieber show

Published: 31 May 2012 10:15 GMT+02:00

The head of the city’s government, Stian Berger Røsland, said he was terrified of the risk for serious injuries as a crowd made up mostly of young girls thronged outside the opera house to watch the 18-year-old Canadian superstar perform.

At one point earlier in the day, Mayor Fabian Stang was forced to take shelter behind a tree to avoid being crushed by hordes of stampeding girls.

“I have already called on the Emergency Planning Agency to examine the entire event from the planning stage to its implementation. We have to find out what went wrong and why it happened.”

Fortunately, no one was seriously injured when thousands of frantic Justin Bieber fans arrived at the Opera House to watch Justin Bieber perform. Ola Krokan at the Oslo police told news agency NTB that 49 girls had received minor injuries while 14 were taken by ambulance to the emergency services, none of them with serious injuries.

Stian Røsland Berger said he had been fearful that children and young people would be crushed, pass out from dehydration, or tumble into the waters of the adjacent fjord.

“There’s no doubt that last night was a miscalculation – a dramatic miscalculation,” said the head of the city council.

Mayor Fabian Stang was also deeply critical of the organization of Bieber’s promotional visit. Earlier on Wednesday, Stang had been cycling down Stortingsgata when he found himself surrounded by hundreds of so-called Beliebers.

“Suddenly there was a huge bunch of girls running. I was scared and had to hide behind a tree to avoid being trampled. I have a great level understanding for dedication, but right there and then I was very scared,” Stang told VG.

“I was very worried about the young girls. It's not the girls' fault; the responsibility lies with the organizers.”  

Outside the Opera House, some 100 police officers and security guards fought hard to keep control of the masses of screaming teenagers.

“We were very worried,” said Kåre Stølen, the head of Wednesday night’s police operation. “There were a lot more people than we had expected. The ones who didn’t make it in to the area were both angry and disappointed.”

When Bieber had left the stage and thousands of fans streamed away from the area, Stølen reflected on what he viewed as a stressful but successful evening.

“It has gone very well. Now we just have to get everyone home safely,” he told NTB.

Universal's Norway chief Petter Singsaas said company representative had lumps in their throats before and during the event.

“We never dreamed that this would set off such a major movement of people. I think Bieber’s crew also felt a lot of pressure during the day even though they travel around with him daily and are more used to this kind of attention. There were extreme reactions in the city, and the logistics were complicated.”

Singsaas said he fully understood the concerns people had, not least the parents of Bieber fans, but he also felt Universal had brought joy to many fans on Wednesday evening.

He added that the company had worked closely with the police and security guards throughout, but said he fully expected the mayor and the council chief to call on Universal to explain why the situation had become so chaotic.

Picture special: Fan frenzy as Justin Bieber comes to Oslo

NTB/The Local (news@thelocal.no)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Police seek boy, 7, abducted in Norway
A search party leaves Molde fire station. Photo: NTB Scanpix/Police

Police seek boy, 7, abducted in Norway

Police in Norway have put out an international appeal after a seven-year-old boy was abducted from a bowling alley. READ  

'Money didn't bring me to Madrid': Ødegaard
Photo: Terje Pedersen/NTB Scanpix/AFP

'Money didn't bring me to Madrid': Ødegaard

Norwegian football prodigy Martin Ødegaard said on Monday he joined Spanish giants Real Madrid for sporting reasons and not for the money. READ  

Norway's Jansrud takes Kitzbühel downhill crown
Jansrud during his victorious run on Saturday. Photo: SAMUEL KUBANI / AFP

Norway's Jansrud takes Kitzbühel downhill crown

Kjetil Jansrud of Norway joined the pantheon of greats to win the men's World Cup downhill at Kitzbühel on Saturday. READ  

Firm ditches Pegida chief for anti-Islam views
Max Hermansen has organized two Pegida marches in Oslo this year. Photo: Fredrik Varfjell / NTB scanpix

Firm ditches Pegida chief for anti-Islam views

Max Hermansen, the leader of the Norway branch of the anti-Islam movement Pegida, has been taken off the pay roll by a training organization because of his controversial views. READ  

Norway finds 'probable' case of mad cow disease
File photo: Bjørn Sigurdsøn/Scanpix

Norway finds 'probable' case of mad cow disease

Norway said on Wednesday it had detected a "probable" case of mad cow disease but urged consumers not to panic as it may not be the same variant as the British 1990s epidemic. READ  

Norway ranks second for cost of living
Staff celebrate a Michelin star for Ylajali in Oslo. We suspect they didn't have to pay for the meal. Photo: Erlend Aas/NTB Scanpix

Norway ranks second for cost of living

A new report shows Switzerland has the highest cost of living in the world, ahead of Norway. READ  

Six naked soldiers catch frostbite in Norway
Soldiers train in Setermoen. File photo: Rune Sævik/Scanpix

Six naked soldiers catch frostbite in Norway

Norwegian military police have launched an investigation after six rookie soldiers were sent out for a run stark naked in -20C temperatures. READ  

New Norway ice map could open up oil search
The Snøhvit natural gas field in the Barents Sea. Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen/Scanpix

New Norway ice map could open up oil search

Norway wants to redefine the contours of the Arctic ice edge, the government announced on Tuesday in a controversial decision that could allow it to further open the Barents Sea to oil and gas exploration. READ  

Police: Don’t report that it’s snowing in Norway
Snow is quite common in Norway. Photo: Håkon Aarthun/NTB Scanpix

Police: Don’t report that it’s snowing in Norway

Police in southern Norway say they are not prioritizing complaints about snow and are urging people to remember that they live in Norway. READ  

Anti-Islam group loses support in Norway
Photo: Fredrik Varfjell/NTB Scanpix

Anti-Islam group loses support in Norway

Just 70 people showed up to take part in an anti-Islam Pegida march in Oslo on Monday, with the group far outnumbered by counter-demonstrators. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
Solberg: The fight for freedom isn't won
National
Gaza doc named Norway's person of year
National
Norway extends Russian military freeze
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
National
Kjell Inge Røkke tops Norway's Rich List
International
Surprise! Norway priciest for home comforts
National
Norway terror attacks to become TV drama
International
Malala: Youngest ever Nobel Peace Laureate
National
Norway celebrates 25 years of Sami politics
Business & Money
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
International
Norway best country for older people
National
Muslim centre wanted on site of Munch Museum
International
Norway to send military staff in fight against IS
National
Father warns Breivik 'more extreme than ever'
National
Four-year-old Norway girl sleepwalks 4km
Travel
Cruise line offers Northern Lights promise
National
10-tonne shark found dead off Norway coast
International
'If Snowden wins Nobel Prize, arrest him!': MP
Culture
VIDEO: Swim ace does 'Pool Rubik's Challenge'
National
Norwegian man in 7,000 litre 'Ice Truck Challenge'
Society
Norwegian brewery pulls 'fart-smelling' beer
Sport
Ødegaard: Norway's youngest player ever
National
Miracle cat survives 20 gunshots in Norway
National
Second death within hours at Chess Olympics
National
Norway and Sweden mark 200 years of peace
Culture
Interview: Helene Meldahl, selfie artist
Society
Now serving ... Norway's smallest bar
Travel
Floating Northern Lights hotel planned in Norway
National
Circus camel escapes again
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
Society
Brit's charity tractor trek heads for Norway
National
Norway lifts Segway ban
Culture
GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Society
Høie promises to reform sex change law
Education
Norway fjord invaded by monster jellyfish
Culture
VIDEO: Norwegian anti-Facebook film goes viral
Culture
Norway pop duo hits number 4 on US charts
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

279
jobs available