Inspection ships in major rescue operation
An earthquake triggered a stone- and landslide in the Karratfjord in Northwest Greenland late Saturday evening local time. An area of about 300 x 1.100 meters collapsed in the fjord and triggered a tidal wave which subsequently hit the coasts of the surrounding islands and fjord systems.
Nuugaasiaq was hit hard and there were both injured and missing people. Residents were evacuated with helicopters from Arctic Command and Air Greenland respectively to the ship “Vædderen”, which reached the area on Sunday.
On Sunday evening, after an overflight of the area, it could be noted that there was an imminent risk of further slides, that caused a comprehensive evacuation work to be initiated in two additional towns.
In a matter of hours, about 75 people were evacuated via helicopters and smaller boats to the Vædderen, and later to the inspection vessel Ejnar Mikkelsen, which also arrived on Sunday. The evacuated people will now be sailed to safety.
During Monday, Arctic Command will be greatly strengthened by CL-604 Challenger and C-130 Hercules aircraft that will be used for search and transportation tasks as well as retrieval of image material for the assessment of damage and assessment of the risk of further natural disasters in the area.
The disaster response is coordinated by the Greenland Police, while Arctic Command is part of the efforts with ships, helicopters in the disaster area, and called staff in Nuuk.
The crisis response organization in Greenland has been activated since late Saturday evening. Therefore, the Arctic Command's Joint Resue Coordination Center has been strengthened with personnel from the command's staff. In addition, the command has sent staff to Greenland's Emergency Planning Staff and the Joint Emergency Press Center in Nuuk.
Source: Arktisk Kommando / Maritime Denmark