26 Missing After Their Homes Slid Away

Homes toppled into a deep ravine in landslide in Ask, Norway, early Wednesday
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 30, 2020 8:44 AM CST
26 Missing After Landslide Rips Through Town
This aerial picture provided by the Norwegian Rescue Service shows the damage after a landslide occurred in a residential area in Ask, near Oslo, on Wednesday.   (Norwegian Rescue Service/NTB via AP)

Twenty-six people are unaccounted for in a Norwegian town following a landslide early Wednesday. At least 10 people were injured when the landslide struck around 4am in the town of Ask in the Gjerdrum municipality, some 15 miles northeast of Oslo, per the Local. The landslide took out a road through the village, leaving a deep ravine. Video footage shows homes teetering on the edge of the ravine, and one falling into it. Photos show more homes within the gully. At least 14 were destroyed, per the Local. Several people were trapped, including some who were able to phone for help, per the BBC.

"Police are designating this as a disaster," says Roger Pettersen, head of the local police operation. He says all injured parties had arrived at hospitals by 9am local time. But 26 people are still unaccounted for, per the BBC. Heavy precipitation preceded the landslide, which occurred in an area known for "quick clay," a form of clay that can quickly change to a liquid state, per Deutsche Welle. "It hurts to see how the forces of nature have ravaged Gjerdrum," Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg tweeted early Wednesday. "My thoughts go to everyone affected by the landslide." Hundreds of people have been evacuated from the area, including residents of an elderly care home. (More Norway stories.)

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