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May 14,2007
Record undersea tunnel closed by rock fall
by UPI

BERGEN, Norway - Authorities in Norway plan to close the Bomlafjord Tunnel to repair Europe's longest undersea traffic tunnel after a recent rock fall.

The monthlong closure this summer of the 4.7-mile tunnel comes after the most recent structural failure in one of Norway's numerous traffic tunnels, Aftenposten reported Monday.

Prior to the Bomlafyord Tunnel becoming littered with falling stone and clay during the last year, Norway's Finnfast and Hanekleiv tunnels suffered similar incidents.

While the Bomlafyord incident was gradual, the Hanekleiv Tunnel suffered a collapsed roof Christmas Day and construction forced a major rock fall in the Finnfast Tunnel.

Weak zones of clay have been blamed for many of rock falls, including the one at the Bomlafjord Tunnel.

Officials downplayed the problem at the record undersea tunnel, alleging the slowly falling rocks did not pose a risk to motorists.

They told Aftenposten that the upcoming construction closure merely represents a precautionary measure.

Copyright ©  2007, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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