Swedish municipality was warned of landslide risk three years ago

The Swedish municipality of Stenungsund had been warned against building in the area that was hit by a landslide on Saturday night. This was reported by several Swedish media outlets.

A road collapsed and several buildings were damaged in the major landslide that occurred on the Swedish motorway E6, just north of Gothenburg near Stenungsund.

It was the authorities in the County Administrative Board (Länsstyrelsen) who, three years ago in a statement, warned that the area was unsuitable for construction.

According to the Swedish media outlet Expressen, the County Administrative Board believed that there was a risk of “accidents, floods, and erosion in the area”.

Therefore, it stated that “construction is inappropriate for the sake of the residents’ and others’ health or safety”. Further assessments of soil stability should be conducted, the authority emphasized.

The area affected by the landslide measures 700 by 200 meters.

The reconstruction of the area could cost billions of kronor.

This is the assessment made by Johan Nimmermark, a specialist in risk management and cost-benefit analysis at the consulting firm Sweco, according to the news agency TT.

“My assessment is that the reconstruction work and the consequences of the landslide in Stenungsund could cost several hundred million to several billion kronor, taking into account all potential secondary effects,” he said on Sunday.

Initially, Swedish media described it as a sinkhole. But by Saturday morning, it became clear that it was a landslide.

On Monday, the Swedish King Carl Gustaf visited the area together with infrastructure minister Andreas Carlson.

“It is very fortunate that it did not happen elsewhere, for example, in a densely populated area. But it is bad,” the king said according to SVT.