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Daily Archives: 5. October 2011 − News & Stories


Visa and pass­port requi­re­ments

Many tou­rists do not know that Spits­ber­gen (Sval­bard) is, oppo­sed to main­land Nor­way, not part of the Schen­gen trea­ty sys­tem. Accord­in­gly, if you need a visa to visit the Schen­gen area, then you will also need a visa to fly from Lon­gye­ar­by­en to Nor­way, even if you are just on a return jour­ney from a shor­ter trip. As a result, when you app­ly for a visa at home to pre­pa­re a jour­ney from out­side Schen­gen area to Sval­bard, it is advi­s­able to app­ly for two visa rather than only one, so you can enter Nor­way when com­ing back from Spits­ber­gen without dif­fi­cul­ties. If necessa­ry, you can also get a visa from the Sys­sel­man­nen.

Remem­ber that you will also need to show a pass­port or natio­nal ID card when tra­vel­ling to and from Lon­gye­ar­by­en. Only Nor­we­gi­an citi­zens are allo­wed to use, for examp­le, a dri­ving licen­se. Non-Nor­we­gi­an flight pas­sen­gers have been denied access to their flight from Lon­gye­ar­by­en to Nor­way becau­se they did not car­ry pass­port or ID card.

Lon­gye­ar­by­en air­port, sin­ce ear­ly 2011 with pass­port con­trol.

Visa and passport requirements - Longyearbyen airport

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten (3611), Sys­sel­man­nen

Polar bear alarm fence

When cam­ping in Spits­ber­gen, it is com­mon and makes sen­se to secu­re the camp against polar bears with an alarm fence (Nor­we­gi­an: snu­b­lebluss), using trip­wires and small explo­si­ve devices. The most reli­able ver­si­on NM4 comes from Nor­we­gi­an mili­ta­ry sources, but is not avail­ab­le any­mo­re for legal rea­sons. The fol­lower (M2) is con­si­de­red not reli­able and safe enough to be used in the field for polar bear pro­tec­tion. As a con­se­quence, the­re are cur­r­ent­ly almost no alarm sys­tems avail­ab­le in Lon­gye­ar­by­en to secu­re camps against polar bears.

Next to the obvious safe­ty aspect, the­re is a deba­te to make tech­ni­cal sys­tems for pro­tec­tion of camps against bears legal­ly man­da­to­ry. It still needs to be defi­ned what such “tech­ni­cal sys­tems” might be, but alarm fen­ces are at least an obvious part of any tech­ni­cal alarm sys­tem. The Sys­sel­man­nen is awa­re that it is dif­fi­cult to make a sys­tem man­da­to­ry that is not avail­ab­le on the mar­ket and is try­ing to con­tri­bu­te in fin­ding a solu­ti­on, but so far without suc­cess.

Under the fatal polar bear attack on August 05 in Tem­pel­fjord, a fai­ling alarm fence con­tri­bu­t­ed to the desas­ter.

In the UK, a sys­tem is avail­ab­le from Arc­tic Limi­ted.

Polar bear alarm fence of the old type (NM4), which is hard­ly avail­ab­le any­mo­re.

Snublebluss

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten (3611), Sys­sel­man­nen

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