• Sweden's news in English

Icy Swedish rooftops could be deadly

Roger Choate · 10 Jan 2010, 13:59

Published: 10 Jan 2010 13:59 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Snow-laden rooftops on old buildings, in particular, pose dangers. Chunks of ice or icicles can simply slide suddenly onto sidewalks and passersby. The newspaper notes that in 2001 a 14-year-old boy was killed in Stockholm when struck by an ice block.

Even though there are specialized companies for shoveling rooftops, there’s a shortage of skilled cleaners, according to Bengt Wånggren, development manager at the Swedish Real Estate Owners Association (Sveriges Fastighetsägare).

Amateurs shouldn’t attempt to do the job, “which itself can be dangerous,” said Joel Wennerström from a company called Rope Access. “There’s a risk they’ll end up being speared by an icicle.”

None of which offers much solace for pedestrians. The best advice is to steer somewhat clear of older multistory buildings for the time being.

Story continues below…

Roger Choate (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

15:02 January 10, 2010 by Neuhier
Snowfences are common on middle european roof edges. Unknown in Scandinavia?
16:13 January 10, 2010 by bira
No, they exist there as well. However, there are always exceptions and old buildings that do not have them. Ice chunks sliding from the peak of a roof can also gain enough momentum to "jump" the fence.
22:02 January 10, 2010 by Steggles
The hard hat business might do well now :-)
23:32 January 10, 2010 by rabindra
Absolutely, its danger as temperature becomes more warmer and ce blocks falls down which may cause human casulties. But, its funny that there are not skilled man power to solve these prolems. If so, why not government and authorised body to train people to remove such problems.
03:35 January 11, 2010 by Davey-jo
I live in a place with sloping roof tops that are covered in ice and snow. To my certain knowledge no-one has ever been injured by falling snow from a roof. I suspect this is just an old Swedish bugbear derived from a Norse myth.
06:38 January 11, 2010 by jose_s
Here's an opportunity create jobs for the unemployed.
08:58 January 11, 2010 by Puffin
@ ranbindra

This is because removing ice blocks is not the government's job but a function that the market provides. All property owners are required by law to remove ice blocks and icicles from their properties. The property owner is liable if somone is injured or killed. something to think about if you are in a BRF - it is the association's responsibility to get the ice cleared

@ Davey-jo

Are you serious? have you been in Sweden?

In the past few years several people have been killed and serious injured by falling ice and snow including:

- a baby in a pram who was killed instantly when ice and snow fell from a roof

- a 14 year old boy who was killed by an icicle in central Stockholm in 2002 - a case that led to the Director of the company responsble for clearing the roof to be convicted in Court of negligence
01:41 January 12, 2010 by podga
@ Puffin

Do you know who's function it is to keep sidewalks etc clear of ice (or, at least, sanded)? As I watch people carefully slip-slide along in Stockholm, I'm starting to reconsider whether living in place where they'll slam you with a lawsuit at the drop of a hat is such a bad thing.
Today's headlines
The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

Rwandan genocide suspect held in Sweden
A memorial centre in Kigali, Rwanda. Photo: Ben Curtis/AP

A man has been arrested in Sweden suspected of involvement in the 1994 Rwandan genocide which claimed 800,000 lives.

Sweden can extend border controls, EU says
A police officer carrying out a check at Sweden's border with Denmark. Photo: Emil Langvad/TT

EU countries including Sweden should be granted permission to extend temporary border controls by a period of a further three months, the European Commission has decided.

Nobel Prizes
'I'd say he's arrogant but I'd be lying': Swedes on Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan performing in France. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Almost two weeks have passed since Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and he has yet to acknowledge the win. The Local asked Swedes what they think of the singer's silence.

Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast by thousands
A Swedish migration authority office in Stockholm. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The country has also slashed its prediction for 2017.

Swedish researchers plan new trucks for women drivers
File photo of trucks in Sweden. Photo: Thomas Johansson/TT

Could vehicles adapted for women attract more female truckers to the profession?

These stats show Swedish driving isn't so gender equal
File photo of a Swedish woman driving a car. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A new survey shows that few Swedish women get behind the wheel when driving with their male partner.

Revealed: Game of Thrones could be coming to Sweden
Game of Thrones cast members at the Emmy Awards in September. Photo: Jordan Strauss/AP

The producers of the hit show have asked for three rounds of location pictures of Swedish island Gotland.

Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available