Plane from France landed ‘one minute’ into Norway quarantine
A plane travelling from Nice in France to Oslo in Norway landed just one minute after the mandatory quarantine was imposed, meaning all 158 passengers needed to self-isolate for 10 days, it has emerged.
The Scandinavian company SAS plane landed seconds after France officially became part of Norway’s “red list”, a Norwegian minister confirmed.
Records from specialist flight site FlightRadar24 show that Flight SK4700 landed at one minute past midnight local time - nine minutes ahead of schedule. Oslo Airport records show that it landed at exactly midnight.
Either way, the new quarantine rules came into force in the country from midnight onwards (inclusive), meaning that all passengers were required to self-isolate for 10 days upon arrival, thanks to a difference of just a few seconds.
According to Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet, the plane passengers applauded when their pilot announced they had landed bang on midnight.
But Elisabeth Johansen, of the Norway ministry for health, said: “The change to the red zone was from midnight inclusive, so whether [they landed] at exactly midnight or one minute after, they must quarantine.”
Passengers must isolate at a private address, and are not permitted to stay at airport hotels.
Norway announced on Thursday August 6 that France was going back on its “red list”, along with Monaco, Switzerland, and the Czech Republic. This was in response to a rise in Covid-19 cases in the countries, after cases in France broke the threshold of 20 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the past 14 days.
While internal borders have technically reopened in Europe and the Schengen Area, individual countries still retain the right to impose restrictions and quarantine measures if they deem it appropriate.
Belgium also warned against all “non essential” travel to and from parts of France last week, as well as parts of the UK, Spain, Switzerland, Romania and Bulgaria.
There are also fears that France could be once again placed on the UK’s “red list” as Covid cases rise.
Norway still has low levels of infection, but has itself seen a rise in cases over the past two weeks, with seven cases in 100,000 inhabitants - triple what it was before, according to figures from the World Health Organisation Europe.
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France