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Flashlight plunges Swedish village into darkness

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Flashlight plunges Swedish village into darkness
10:51 CET+01:00
The small village of Brokind in eastern Sweden fell into darkness over the weekend after a mischievous local used their flashlight to knock out a streetlight sensor, giving the impression that the sun was shining.

November is a dark month in Sweden, with November 2009 offering up only 17.5 hours of sunlight in many parts of the country, an average of 35 minutes a day.

With electric lighting thus an important fact of life for those living in the far north of Europe and with the village of Brokind plunged into darkness on Saturday evening, one could expect that a technician was immediately dispatched to the location to identify the problem.

But sleepy villagers, perhaps not noticing the difference, took their time to report the problem, enduring a blackout throughout the whole of Sunday.

When the local technical power centre was finally made aware of the problem, a repairman was dispatched to the location, and uncovered the flashlight funny business.

The matter has now been reported to the police and the discovery has prompted ire from villagers.

"We had to fumble our way forward and it was hard to find. I think this is a pretty serious case of mischief. That you leave it there all day so that it was dark even on Sunday evening, I think this is serious," said Inga-Lena Holm, chairperson of the Brokind residents' association to the local Corren daily.

The use of sensors to steer street lighting is common in Sweden with larger cities thus also susceptible to roguish sabotage of the nature which befell rural Brokind.

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