COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — A construction crane crashed onto a shopping mall in central Norway on Friday amid strong winds, injuring at least two people and leaving one person unaccounted-for, police said.
The winds likely caused the unmanned crane, which was at least 50 meters (165 feet) high to slam onto the mall in Melhus, which is south of Trondheim, the Scandinavian country’s third-largest city, police spokesman Ebbe Kimo told the VG newspaper.
The crane collapse caused damage to the first and second floors of the shopping mall and firefighters were going through the building searching for people, said police, adding they were using dogs and a drone in their search.
Norwegian media said there weren't many shoppers in the Melhustorget mall at the time of the collapse, which occured at 9:17 a.m. (0817 GMT; 3:17 a.m. EST). Those inside the mall, including shop employees, were evacuated to the nearby city hall.
Local newspaper Trønderbladet reported that the roof inside the shopping mall had caved in. The crane was located on a building site at the mall, which was undergoing an expansion with new shops and apartments. The expanded mall was planned to open in two stages in 2023, according to the facility’s web page.
A second crane was on the same building site and Norwegian news agency NTB said police were looking into securing other tall machinery in the area.
Strong winds were reported over Norway on Friday, according to the Norwegian Meteorological Institute.