• Sweden edition
 

Ambulances getting stuck in deep snow

Published: 22 Feb 2010 14:39 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Feb 2010 14:39 GMT+01:00

Borås, like most areas of Sweden, has received an unseasonal amount of snow this winter with little sign of a break in the clouds.

While the snow has become a familiar cause of frustration for commuters in recent weeks, the problems have now extended to emergency services.

Several health authorities around the country have recently swapped their pools of Swedish Volvo four-wheel-drive ambulances in favour of Mercedes, as the German cars were able to cope with greater loads.

The new ambulances are however rear-wheel-drive and reports have been dropping in of ambulances getting stuck in the snow, and needing the help of neighbours and passers-by to help push them free.

The new Mercedes vehicles are instead equipped with "snow-socks" which can be pulled over the wheels to help boost traction; but with the reports starting to mount, a review is set to consider the relative merits of the respective vehicles.

"We are going to put in place a group that will weigh up the pros and cons of the vehicles. It is important to point out that there are also significant advantages to this type of vehicle," said Magnus Eriksson, head of the ambulance fleet in Borås, to SVT.

In the meantime, ambulance staff are being told to take precautions.

"It is a question of being prepared for the conditions and perhaps putting the socks on before the ambulance gets stuck," Eriksson said.

Heavy weekend snowfalls have led to a slew of schools in several municipalities closing their doors on Monday due to the risk of collapsing roofs.

In Jönköping, sections of the Juneporten shopping centre have been closed due to large amounts of snow on the roof.

A recent spate of collapsed roofs could be due to checks on larger buildings being neglected in recent years, according to experts at the SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden.

"We think that there has been a decline in safety standards and controls. That is something we have seen in recent accidents," Bo Källsner at the institute told news agency TT.

According to Björn Engström at Chalmer's University of Technology in Gothenburg, the rules are strict regarding the safety of roofs and underlined the importance of investigating every case of a collapse to determine the underlying cause.

TT/Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

15:42 February 22, 2010 by Ingka71
"We are going to put in place a group that will weigh up the pros and cons of the vehicles. It is important to point out that there are also significant advantages to this type of vehicle," ... duhhhh you have bought vehicles who can't drive when it's snowing, that to me is a significant disadvantage, or isn't the first prerequisite of an ambulance that it can drive ? If not then it's just an expensive hospital bed, right?
16:33 February 22, 2010 by Craptastical
@Ingka71

I imagine that it's not just the capabilities in snow that they'll review. They'll probably have to review how large the cabin is, fuel efficiency, maximum load, handling capabilities in all road conditions (not just snow, those things are top heavy already).

Anyway, just as you are... I am a bit surprised that they don't have vehicles to address sever winter weather as well. Hopefully by next winter they'll prepare for the worst but hope for the best instead of the other way around.
16:39 February 22, 2010 by this_aint_sparta
The new rule according to the prevaling winter conditions is that patients might be asked to come to the place where there is less snow and they can b picked up from there or the patient might be asked to get off the vehicle and push, imagine an 80 year old GUNNILA pushing that huge yellow vehicle from rear.
16:45 February 22, 2010 by Craptastical
@this_aint_sparta

It's that protestant work ethic... or something ;-)
17:29 February 22, 2010 by Nemesis
Whichever idiots came up with the idiot to switch to two wheeldrive on ambulances should be put either in a mental insitution or a jail, or both.

Ambulances have to be able to go everywhere. Four wheel drive is needed for that.
18:11 February 22, 2010 by this_aint_sparta
@ Nemesis

You can suggest them to buy "Stridsvagn 103" tanks and they can go everywhere.
18:54 February 22, 2010 by Internuncio
Here in Scania they switched the radio system from the old proven simplex system to the new "RAKEL" thing. As no one knows how it works, which it can't anyway due to the terrain here, the ambulances can stay in the garage.
20:43 February 22, 2010 by EtoileBrilliant
Snow and rear wheel drive cars - not great bed fellows. BMWs are the worse.
21:30 February 22, 2010 by GLO
OK !!!! Two Wheel Drive EMERGENCY Trans.....????????

This is just NUTS...
22:35 February 22, 2010 by GefleFrequentFlyer
Most ambalamps I see in Sweden are Chevrolet 2500 4x4 series trucks. Seems like the ideal all weather vehicle.
12:21 February 23, 2010 by wifey
@Nemesis

'Whichever idiots came up with the idiot to switch to two wheeldrive on ambulances should be put either in a mental insitution or a jail, or both.'

My thoughts exactly!!

I wonder why they just don't pull out the motorbikes now???

"We are going to put in place a group that will weigh up the pros and cons of the vehicles...said Magnus Eriksson, head of the ambulance fleet in Borås, to SVT.

Hey I'll take the job!!
Today's headlines
National
Swedish Saab plant sheds a third of workers
Workers at the Saab plant in Trollhättan. Photo: TT

Swedish Saab plant sheds a third of workers

Swedish car maker Saab has announced it has axed 155 workers, close to a third of its workforce. READ  

International
Sweden's 'most dangerous art' on sale
A Danish site is selling the works that the Swedish state wants destroyed. Screenshot: www.entartetekunst.dk

Sweden's 'most dangerous art' on sale

Work by controversial jailed Swedish artist Dan Park is on sale online and could reach a gallery in Copenhagen, despite a previous exhibition being pulled. READ  

Society
Sweden is 'second best' place to grow old
Pensioners in Sweden. Photo: TT

Sweden is 'second best' place to grow old

Sweden has dropped to second place in an annual index measuring the quality of life of elderly people in 96 countries around the world. READ  

National
Top Swedish skier killed in Chile avalanche
Andreas Fransson, left. Photo: Markus Alatalo

Top Swedish skier killed in Chile avalanche

UPDATED: The bodies of two of the world's top skiers, Sweden's Andreas Fransson and JP Auclair from Canada, were found on Tuesday after they were reported missing in an avalanche in the Andes. READ  

Politics
Coalition promise to boost welfare and jobs
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

Coalition promise to boost welfare and jobs

UPDATED: The Social Democrats and the Greens have agreed to raise unemployment payments and promised to create more jobs in the construction industry, The Local has learned. READ  

National
Ikea recalls elk pasta
Two types of pasta are affected. Photo: IKEA

Ikea recalls elk pasta

Ikea has pulled two different types of elk-shaped pasta from its stores in Sweden. READ  

Presented by Regus
How to get your own great office in Stockholm
A woman using a Regus workspace. Photo: Regus

How to get your own great office in Stockholm

Stockholm's business climate is hotter than ever, which leaves start-ups and business travellers hunting high and low for flexible office space. The solution is easier than they think. READ  

National
King Carl XVI Gustaf opens parliament
King Carl XVI Gustaf arriving on Tuesday afternoon. Photo: TT

King Carl XVI Gustaf opens parliament

BREAKING: Sweden's post-election parliament is meeting for the first time following a fanfare opening from King Carl XVI Gustaf. READ  

Opinion
Should Sweden's school age be raised?
A high school in Stockholm. Photo: TT

Should Sweden's school age be raised?

After the new coalition announced plans to extend Sweden's compulsory schooling until the age of 18, The Local asked two Swedes at high school if they agreed with the idea. READ  

Brand stories
JohannaN: beautiful jewellery with a story

JohannaN: beautiful jewellery with a story

Just 27 and already living off of her own designs, some may consider Johanna Nilsson lucky. But she doesn't believe in luck. She's the founder of a jewellery line blending sustainability, subtle style, and Scandinavian simplicity - and it's taking the world by storm. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Apology for Swedish model's stolen photos
Politics
New coalition agrees on defence and migration
Fastighetsbyrån
Gallery
Property of the week: Botkyrka
Education
New government to make school compulsory to 18
Politics
Sweden Democrat wins Deputy Speaker spot
Blog updates

28 September

Spoiled Doyle (Blogweiser) »

"What you gotta watch out for in Sweden is the good stuff. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Re_EzUe6xpI In Sweden, it’s the good things you have to watch out for. Video on @TheLocalSweden http://t.co/rAb8eGFdTD pic.twitter.com/w37YYwMXy1 — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) September 29, 2014 " READ »

 

26 September

 (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Autumn swept into Sweden at the start of this week with snow in the north of the country and flooding in the south. As well as a change in the weather, Sweden’s change in political direction became clearer, with Social Democrat leader Stefan Lofven formally announcing his party would work with the Greens as..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Swedish scientists sneak Bob Dylan lyrics into articles
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Gallery
People-watching: September 28th
National
When Italian style meets Swedish simplicity
Lifestyle
Review: Sweden's first alcohol-free nightclub
Gallery
In Pictures: The MS Estonia disaster
Lifestyle
Ten things expat women notice in Sweden
Politics
What's next on Sweden's political stage?
Gallery
Sweden's 2014 election: Most memorable moments
Society
What's on in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 24th
Seaman Oliver Gee with his first lobster
Lifestyle
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Gallery
In Pictures: Fredrik Reinfeldt through the years.
Society
Plucked out of Canada for love and guitars
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
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 Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

852
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN