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Norovirus outbreak in Nordic mountain cabins

About 30 people have been hit by an outbreak of the stomach virus in Hardangervidda, Norway.

Around 30 people have been struck down by an outbreak of stomach virus at mountain cabins in Hardangervidda, a national park and plateau between Oslo and Bergen.

The Norwegian Trekking Association reports that 29 people have been hit by the contagious norovirus, which broke out on Sunday night, and those who are sick have been isolated from other patients.

Hardangervidda is popular at this time of year for cross-country skiing from hut to hut and the virus appears to have broken out at some of these cabins.

“It’s a difficult problem when people at our cabins get sick. We are doing our best to take care of them,” said Henning Hoff Wikborg, chief executive of the Norwegian Trekking Association.

Symptoms of norovirus are nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. Those who are ill have been isolated in their own rooms and have access to their own toilet, Wikborg said. Around 15 people from Hardangervidda have been taken by the Hordaland Red Cross.

Visiting for Easter?
Those affected can be infectious for up to 48 hours after the last symptoms have disappeared, and health experts advise that they should not move on to other cabins on the first day they feel healthy again.

The trekking association advises that anyone with plans to visit Hardangervidda for Easter should contact it in advance about the cabins they plan to visit. In particular, the cabin in Sandhaug was badly hit.

“There is no reason to cancel Easter holidays to the mountains. There are many possibilities for a nice holiday both in Hardangervidda and in other mountain areas, but it is important to think of good hygiene as you travel. Please take antibac in your luggage and wash your hands well,” Wikborg says.

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