While COVID-19 restrictions on public events continue to hold strong, illegal raves have been on the rise across Europe and America. In Norway’s capital, Oslo, one such illegal rave ended disastrously. An estimated 200 partygoers in their twenties and thirties gathered at a secret, underground bunker. However, the unsolicited event turned dark quickly, as 27 attendees fell sick to carbon monoxide poisoning in its aftermath. The source of this lethal poison came from the portable diesel generators used to power the lighting and sound system.
Due to the event’s secrecy and underground location, emergency services were notified almost too late. In fact, a patrol came across a group of confused young people wandering the area, and soon after more emerged from the bunker, all requesting an ambulance. Upon arrival, Oslo’s fire and rescue team found seven participants lying unconscious in the bunker. Seemingly, an unsafe setup and use of generators lead to a massive gas leak, one that went completely undetected.
An assessment of oxygen levels on scene reported a mere 16%; the minimum safe concentration being 19.5%. Lars Magne Hovtum, of Oslo’s fire and rescue department stated, “the risk of suffocation was just one of many things posing a life-threatening situation.” In total, 27 people were found to have been poisoned, with five hospitalized in critical condition. Thankfully all have had improved conditions since their arrival.
For those who may not know, carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that causes harm by removing oxygen from blood cells. One partygoer who left before police arrival commented that this was the largest ‘rave cave’ event in several months. Another told reporters he had repeatedly gone outside for fresh air after arriving to the rave at 11 PM. “When you rave in a room without windows with 50 to 60 others, the air becomes heavy,” the unnamed man said. “I had to go out several times and breathe fresh air.”
The company who owns the bunker released a statement calling the illegal rave a “serious break-in” and did not feel any responsibility.
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