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OFFBEAT

Cops put drugs bust on hold for snack break

Amid a flurry of sirens and flashing blue lights, two Norwegian police officers pulled in to a petrol station on Friday evening to stock up on refreshments before speeding away again to hone in on their target.

Cops put drugs bust on hold for snack break
File photo: Heiko Junge/Scanpix (File)

The police car overtook a number of vehicles as it zipped along the road from Mo to Ytteren in northern Norway shortly after 9pm on Friday, newspaper Ranablad reports.

Curious onlookers were dumbfounded however when the squad car peeled off into the local Esso station after reaching the roundabout at Ytteren.

Two officers were spotted clambering out of the car and sauntering into the store. One of them was then observed clutching two fizzy drink bottles before the car accelerated away, again with its sirens wailing and lights flashing.

Roald Bjerkadal, head of the Mo police station, revealed that the thirsty officers had also made sure to grab a bite to eat.  

“We were about to crack a narcotics case, and the operations centre requested a patrol to quickly make its way to a built-up area 30 or 40 kilometres outside Mo in Rana,” he told newspaper VG.

“It was in connection with this that the police officers stopped and bought food and drink because they thought the operation might take a while,” said Bjerkadal.

While their superiors had since told them off over the incident, the officers did not break any formal rules and will not be formally reprimanded, Bjerkadal said, adding that it "shouldn't have happened".

“To the general public, it might look stupid and in that sense it’s unfortunate. It affects people’s trust in us when we ask for a clear route.”

But despite the snack break, Bjerkadal was pleased to note that the operation had otherwise gone as planned. 

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POLICE

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

A Frenchwoman and a Spaniard were killed and nine other mountaineers were injured on Friday in an ice fall in southwest Switzerland, police said following a rescue attempt involving several helicopters.

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

Police received calls at 6.20 am reporting that mountaineers had been caught up in falling seracs — columns of glacial ice formed by crevasses — on the Grand Combin, a glacial massif near the Italian border in the Wallis region.

Seven helicopters with mountain rescue experts flew to the scene, finding 17 mountaineers split among several groups.

“Two people died at the scene of the accident,” Wallis police said in a statement. They were a 40-year-old Frenchwoman and a 65-year-old man from Spain.

Nine mountaineers were airlifted to hospitals in nearby Sion and in Lausanne. Two of them are seriously injured, police said.

Other mountaineers were evacuated by helicopter.

The regional public prosecutor has opened an investigation “to determine the circumstances of this event”, the police said.

The serac fall happened at an altitude of 3,400 metres in the Plateau de Dejeuner section along the Voie du Gardien ascent route.

The Grand Combin massif has three summits above 4,000 metres, the highest of which is the Combin de Grafeneire at 4,314 metres.

The police issued a note of caution about setting off on such high-altitude expeditions.

“When the zero-degree-Celsius isotherm is around 4,000 metres above sea level, it is better to be extra careful or not attempt the route if in doubt,” Wallis police said.

“The golden rule is to find out beforehand from the mountain guides about the chosen route and its current feasibility.”

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