Skaters cut adrift on ice floes

Eleven skaters were rescued on Saturday afternoon after two ice floes in the Stockholm archipelago broke free and started to drift in the Baltic Sea.

The floes broke away in Simpäsklubb, to the east of Björkö, near the coast off Norrtälje. Seven people were on one floe, and four on the other.

“It was successful and went quickly. All of them are safe,” said Ingmar Johansson, rescue leader at the Swedish coastguard, at 1.30pm.

The alarm was raised at 12.40, and two ambulance helicopters, a police helicopter, a coastguard helicopter and a hovercraft were scrambled.

Johansson said that seven of the skaters were picked up by the helicopters, and the other four by the hovercraft.

“The floes had already reached open water, some 500 metres from the furthest outcrops of land,” Johansson observed.

TT/The Local