Denmark sends police to Greenland after earthquake and floods

Police in Greenland are receiving assistance from Danish colleagues after an earthquake caused a village to flood in the autonomous Danish territory.

Denmark sends police to Greenland after earthquake and floods
Photo: Oline Nielsen/Scanpix

11 officers were flown from Denmark to the Arctic Circle island on Sunday to relieve local police after the earthquake and subsequent flood, reports news agency Ritzau.

The Danish officers will assist in operative command of the rescue efforts as well as relieve hard-pressed colleagues, said a spokesperson from the Danish National Police (Rigspolitiet). The 11 officers come from various police departments as well as the National Police.

Several people are reported to have been injured in the flooding of the Nuugaatsiaq settlement on Greenland's northwestern coast.

Four people are still missing after the incident, Chief of Police Bjørn Tegner Bay confirmed at a press conference on Sunday.

Two are critically injured and seven others injured but in a stable condition.

Nuugaatsiaq has a population of 101.

Police said that they have registered 78 people, all of whom have been evacuated to nearby Uummannaq, Greenland’s eleventh-largest town.

A spokesperson said the difference in numbers was not necessarily a cause for concern.

“It is not the case that we are short of numbers and are concerned due to the difference. The residents could be somewhere else or on vacation,” a spokesperson said at the press meeting according to Ritzau.

The earthquake, which happened on Saturday evening local time, caused a tsunami which resulted in high waves and flooding in the village, according to the report.

11 buildings in the Nuugaatsiaq settlement have been washed away by the waves. 

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