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Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Thursday

Find out what’s going on in Norway on Thursday with The Local’s short roundup of important news.

Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Thursday
Øvre Slottsgate, Oslo, where shops will be back open. Photo by Eirik Skarstein on Unsplash

Oslo relaxes Covid-19 restrictions today with shops and malls to reopen

Retail and shopping reopen in Oslo after being closed since March 2nd.

This is part of the Norwegian capitals phased approach to the second step of its five-step plan for reopening and relaxing coronavirus measures.

The rest of the measures mentioned, such as bars, restaurants and gyms, will reopen later in May, around the 20th.

READ MORE: Oslo relaxes Covid restrictions with shops and malls to reopen

“I am pretty sure that the population of Oslo does not want us to take big risks with the reopening,” Mayor Raymond Johansen said.

Six out of ten believe the ‘coronavirus certificate’ is a good idea

Six out of ten people in Norway believe that fully vaccinated people should receive a vaccine passport or coronavirus certificate with benefits, according to a survey from Opinion.

The data collection firm asked 3,200 people if they think people who have had both doses of a vaccine in Norway should have access to perks such as travelling without quarantine, going to the cinema, attending large events and night clubs.

READ MORE: ‘Covid certificates’:Norway reveals plans to give people more freedoms

59 percent of those polled were in favour of the certificate being used to exempt people from Covid-19 restrictions, 25 percent were against this, and the rest were unsure.

A digital Covid-19 certificate. Source: helsenorge.no

“There is still a lot of uncertainty about what this will actually mean, but most people are positive,” senior adviser at Opinion, Nora Clausen, said.

Those under the age of 40 were the highest proportion of people against the certificates, about one in three in this age group said they were opposed to the Covid-19 certificate.

Google has fixed a privacy vulnerability with Norway’s infection tracking app

Smittestopp and other apps that use Googles’s infection tracking system have been affected by a vulnerability on Android phones.

According to the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH), the error has now been fixed.

“We received an email from Google yesterday that said that they have corrected the error and that a fix has been rolled out to 98 percent of users. We will be following the situation closely in the next few days so that we can be adamant the fix has worked,” Pål Solerød, IT manager at the NIPH, said in a statement.

The error allowed other app providers and network providers to access users data.

Trade union sells 52 million kroner worth of holiday properties

The Electricity and IT Association has sold its leisure properties, 15 shoreline cabins for around 52 million kroner.

The properties are in the Frogn municipality, about half an hours drive from Oslo. The land comes with 340 metres of shoreline and its own pier.

469 cases of infection in Norway
On Wednesday, 469 new cases of coronavirus were registered in Norway.

This is an increase of 76 cases compared to the seven-day rolling average, which is 393.

Cases are down by 15 compared to Tuesday, when 484 cases were recorded.

The R-number or reproduction rate in Norway is currently 0.7. This means that the pandemic is receding in Norway as for every ten people that are infected, they will, on average, only infect another seven people.

Total number of daily cases in Norway since the pandemic began. Source: NIPH

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OSLO

Have Oslo’s new electric scooter rules reduced accidents?

New rules were brought in to combat the sharp rise in accidents and injuries involving electric scooters in Oslo. But, one month later, have the new regulations done the job?  

Have new rules had an impact on the number of accidents involving scooters in Oslo. Pictured it two e-scooters parked outside a

New rules brought in to cut down on the number of e-scooter accidents in Norway’s capital appear to have had the desired effect as incidents were more halved in September, when the rules were introduced, compared to the month before. 

This is according to figures from Oslo University Hospital’s (OUS) emergency department that have been obtained by newspaper Aftenposten

The Emergency Medical Service in Oslo registered 143 injuries in connection with electric scooters in September. In August, the month before measures were brought in, there were 301 injuries.’

Compared to the peak of accidents in June, where 436 injuries were recorded, incidents are down by almost two-thirds. 

“We are very happy. This is what we hoped for,” Henrik Siverts, chief physician at OUS’s emergency department, told the newspaper Aftenposten

‘We feared it would happen’: Oslo sees first death of electric scooter rider

Among the new stricter rules introduced for rental scooters, which included significantly cutting the number of devices in the city, was a curfew that prevented people from using them between 11pm and 5am. 

Siverts said that the curfew had a dramatic effect in reducing accidents at night. 

“Unsurprisingly, accidents have gone down at night time. What injuries we do get at night are probably people who privately own their scooters. But accidents have also gone down during the day, too,” he explained.  

Just eight injuries were recorded in September at night, compared to just under 100 in August. 

Over the summer, a surge in accidents meant accident and emergency departments in Oslo were forced to have more staff on during weekends. Still, as a result of the reduction in scooter accidents, staffing has now returned to normal. 

Have your say

Have the new e-scooter rules in Oslo been effective? Let us know in the poll below. 

 

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