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What are the rules for fires and BBQs in Norway?

The Norwegian public have been asked by the authorities to consider holding off on lighting campfires or disposal grills due to the risk of forest fires. Here are the key rules you need to know about lighting fires and BBQs in Norway.

Pictured is a campfire in the Arctic Circle.
Here is the key rules you need to know about lighting fires in Norway. Pictured is a campfire in the Arctic Circle. Photo by Peter Schulz on Unsplash

Norway’s Justice Minister has asked residents to think twice about lighting a fire or cooking on a disposable grill due to the risk of forest fires. 

“The smell of bonfires and sausages grilling are some of the best I know. But we have to do without it for a while. So it is better to bring a sausage in a thermos or have a sandwich,” Justice Minister Emilie Enger Mehl told newswire NTB on Thursday. 

The minister’s comments come following several large forest fires in May and dry weather, meaning blazes are easily ignited and spread. More than 400 fires were registered across the country in April

Oslo’s fire service has also said that people should consider leaving the engangsgrill, or disposable BBQ, at home when planning a trip to the capital’s nature spots. So, what are the official rules? 

Due to the risk of forest fires, campfires are generally prohibited from April 15th until September 15th in wooded areas and forests

However, even though there is a general campfire ban in place, people are still allowed to light fires and use disposable grills in areas where a fire is unlikely, such as near snow or water, at an approved campsite, or if they are well acquainted with local conditions and rules. Oslo’s parks are also exempt from the general ban. The fire must also be at a safe distance from buildings and vegetation. 

READ MORE: What are the rules and culture of camping in Norway?

BBQs in somebody’s back garden are also fine, as the lawn is considered cultivated land. People are also allowed to burn organic garden waste but may need to notify or seek permission from their local authority first. 

 

In times of extreme drought, local authorities can impose a total fire ban. When a total ban is in place, all open fires outdoors, with the general exception for BBQs in one’s own garden, are prohibited. 

Other helpful tips 

  • You can check the risk of forest fires spreading where you by using yr.no
  • Fires caused by people putting disposable grills in regular bins when finished are common in Norway. However, most parks and green spaces will have designated bins typically marked “engangsgrill”, which are fire safe. 
  • If the fire does get out of control, the number for Norway’s fire service is 110.
  • The person who lights the fire is the one who is responsible for ensuring it doesn’t spread and is properly extinguished.

Vocabulary 

Generalle bålforbud

(General fire ban) 

Totalt bålforbud

(Total fire ban) 

Brannvesenet

(The fire service) 

Skogbrann

(Forest fire)

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TRAVEL

Traffic and flight delays in eastern Norway after snowy start to week

Traffic in eastern Norway is feeling the effects of heavy snowfall on Monday morning.

Traffic and flight delays in eastern Norway after snowy start to week
Illustration file photo. AFP

The snow has resulted in difficult driving conditions with several accidents confirmed by police, media including NRK and Aftenposten report.

Snowfall is also affecting air travel at Oslo’s Gardermoen Airport, with some delays to departures confirmed.

“There will be delays due to the clearing of runways and de-icing of aircraft,” the airport’s operator Avinor said to NRK via communications officer Nora Prestaasen.

Around half of departures were delayed but between 30 minutes and 1 hour on Monday morning. Passengers are nevertheless advised to arrive at the airport on schedule, Prestaasen said.

 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 

 
 

 
 
 

Det kom litt snø ❄️❄️❄️ #avising #vinterinorge

A post shared by Brita Erlandsen (@britaerlandsen) on Nov 11, 2019 at 2:59am PST

Traffic incidents include an overturned bus in Sørum Municipality in Akershus, while a woman was run over by a minibus which lost control in bad weather in Ullensaker, also in Akershus.

The woman, who was described by a police officer to NRK as “conscious after the accident”, was taken to hospital. The seriousness of her condition is not known at the time of writing.

The E6 motorway in the Oslo and Akershus areas was partly covered by snow, with police advising motorists to avoid non-essential journeys and busy sections if possible, while also urging patience if queuing occurs.

“Leave your car at home if you have not switched to winter tyres, adjust your speed and keep a good distance,” Oslo Police office Line Skott told NRK.

The Norwegian Meteorological Institute issued weather warnings on Sunday for the Agder, Telemark, Vestfold, Østfold, Oslo, Akershus and Buskerud counties.

City traffic in Oslo was also affected by the weather, with snow from midnight on Sunday slowing things down by Monday morning.

“There are a good deal of delays to (city) bus services now,” Oslo bus operator Ruter’s press officer Knut-Martin Løken told NRK.

The Norwegian Public Roads Administration (Vegvesen, NPRA) also advised care on the roads on Monday.

“It has snowed heavily in our region during the early hours, so roads must be gritted,” the authority’s East Norway section tweeted.

“There may therefore be queuing, including at unexpected location. Allow plenty of time for journeys and drive in accordance with conditions,” the tweet also read.

Updated traffic information can be found on the NPRA website.

READ ALSO: 'Try to embrace it': Your advice on Norway's long winter nights