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Home → June, 2013

Monthly Archives: June 2013 − News & Stories

Book review for Sval­bard gui­de­book “Spits­ber­gen-Sval­bard”

Final­ly – good news again from Spits­ber­gen: ano­ther book review about my gui­de­book “Spits­ber­gen-Sval­bard” has been published in Polar Record, the polar sci­ence peri­odi­cal from the Scott Polar Insti­tu­te in Cam­bridge. The aut­hor is Niko­las Sell­heim from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lap­land in Rova­nie­mi, Finn­land. I just quo­te one sen­tence: “What inde­pen­dent wri­ter, publisher and expe­di­ti­on lea­der Rolf Stan­ge has accom­plished with this book is extra­or­di­na­ry.”

Gre­at that someone has reco­gni­zed it – final­ly 🙂

Down­load the full review here of read it at:

Sell­heim, Niko­las (2013) Book Review: Spits­ber­gen-Sval­bard: A Com­ple­te Gui­de Around the Arc­tic Archi­pe­la­go by Rolf Stan­ge. 2012. In 49 Polar Record 3, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0032247413000260.

The gui­de­book “Spits­ber­gen-Sval­bard” has recent­ly recei­ved a very posi­ti­ve review in Polar Record.

Guidebook: Spitsbergen-Svalbard

Mine acci­dent in Barents­burg: worker dead

More tra­gic news from Spits­ber­gen. Yes­ter­day (Thurs­day, June 20) a worker died in the coal mine in Barents­burg. The 27 year old Ukrai­ni­an was caught by a rock­fall in a ven­ti­la­ti­on fun­nel, 300 meters under the sur­face. The mine is now clo­sed until fur­ther.

The Sys­sel­man­nen is inves­ti­ga­ting the case. When the Nor­we­gi­an offi­ci­als rea­ched the mine, the body was, howe­ver, alre­a­dy remo­ved from the mine.

Ven­ti­la­ti­on fun­nel in Barents­burg (archi­ve image).

Mine accident in Barentsburg - Ventilation funnel Barentsburg

Source: Sys­sel­man­nen

Zodiac acci­dent in Kross­fjord: woman dead (II)

Some more details regar­ding the dead­ly Zodiac acci­dent in Kross­fjord on Mon­day have been published. It has now been con­firm­ed that the ship invol­ved was the Sea Spi­rit, which is curr­ent­ly under char­ter by Quark Expe­di­ti­ons, an Ame­ri­can expe­di­ti­on crui­sing com­pa­ny, well known in the busi­ness. The vic­tim was an US-Ame­ri­can woman in her six­ties. The acci­dent hap­pen­ed during a Zodiac crui­se near the nor­t­hern side of Fjor­ten­de Juli­buk­ta in Kross­fjord. All 13 per­sons fell into the water as the Zodiac was hit by a lar­ge wave. One woman lost her con­scious­ness and died then for reasons not yet known in detail. Three more per­sons were inju­red, two of them were sub­se­quent­ly trea­ted in the hos­pi­tal in Lon­gye­ar­by­en.

Fur­ther details have as of yet not been published. Fjor­ten­de Juli­buk­ta is reason­ab­ly well shel­te­red from hea­vy seas. A wave lar­ge enough to cau­se a Zodiac to cap­si­ze might come from a very mas­si­ve cal­ving of the gla­cier or in case of extre­me wea­ther. It seems likely that a dri­ving mista­ke was invol­ved. Shal­lows near the litt­le bird cliff on the north side of Fjor­ten­de Juli­buk­ta may have play­ed a role: in case of a lar­ge wave rol­ling in from the gla­cier, it may be harm­less over deep water, but break over a shal­low. This may cau­se a boat to cap­si­ze. All this is, howe­ver, pure spe­cu­la­ti­on; we have to wait for more con­firm­ed infor­ma­ti­on.

Fjor­ten­de Juli­buk­ta, Kross­fjord.

Zodiac accident in Krossfjord: woman dead (II) - Fjortende Julibukta, Krossfjord

Source: Sys­sel­man­nen

Zodiac acci­dent in Kross­fjord: woman dead

A woman died during a small boat acci­dent today (17th June) in Kross­fjord, nor­thwes­tern Spits­ber­gen. The Zodiac (inflata­ble rub­ber boat) was caught by a wave on the way from a small crui­se ship to the shore. All 13 per­sons fell into the water. One woman was sub­se­quent­ly trea­ted by the ship’s phy­si­ci­an and res­cue ser­vices were cal­led, but could not save her.

All that is known so far is that the woman was in her six­ties and not of Nor­we­gi­an natio­na­li­ty. Fur­ther details regar­ding the acci­dent, the cau­se of death or the iden­ti­ty of the woman are not yet known.

Zodiacs are very strong inflata­ble rub­ber boats that are com­mon­ly used during rough con­di­ti­ons. The wea­ther con­di­ti­ons in Kross­fjord at the time of the acci­dent are not yet known, but it can be belie­ved that they must have been extre­me. The last days have gene­ral­ly been quite win­dy in Spits­ber­gen (today in Isfjord force 4-5 from west and sou­thwest, but else­whe­re pos­si­bly much stron­ger).

Zodiac in use during strong wind.

Zodiac, Spitsbergen

Source: Sys­sel­man­nen

Hap­py ending of a dra­ma­tic dogs­led­ding expe­di­ti­on

Two ger­man tou­rists, one gui­de and 18 sled dogs left Ymer­buk­ta (Ymer­bay) for an five-day dogs­led­ding expe­di­ti­on on the north side of Isfjor­den. Initi­al­ly the wea­ther was nice but it chan­ged the day after and got worse. Final­ly the whiteout forced the expe­di­ti­on to find a sui­ta­ble camp­si­te at Kjepas­set (Kjepp­ass). At the same time the dogs of the gui­de got into a steep snow­drift and star­ted to slip. The gui­de couldn´t mana­ge to stop them and jum­ped off the sled. The dogs and the sled dis­ap­peared in a crev­as­se. In case of bad wea­ther con­di­ti­ons on the next day res­cue wasn´t pos­si­ble despi­te ser­ve­ral attemps to reach the dogs. Alt­hougt it was able to lower a new rif­le. The rif­le of the expe­di­ti­on dis­ap­peared also in the crev­as­se with the sled. Ano­ther day later the wea­ther cle­ared and res­cuers were able to reach the dogs. All dogs were unin­ju­red and in good shape. After the dogs got food and water the gui­de and the two tou­rists deci­ded to con­ti­nue the expe­di­ti­on back to Ymer­buk­ta.

Sled dogs on Spits­ber­gen

dogsledding expedition

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten, Ice­peo­p­le


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