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Optimising safety in the Oslo Tunnel

Photo: COWI

​COWI expects a growing market for tunnel safety in Scandinavia.

​In January 2012, COWI Norway set up a tunnel-safety team that has now finished a project to improve fire safety in the Oslo Tunnel.

​Built in 1980, the Oslo Tunnel runs some 3.6 km below the streets of the Norwegian capital, and is the most heavily trafficked section of mainline railway in Northern Europe. The tunnel presents vast challenges in terms of fire safety, and it is one of the most vulnerable areas of transport in Norway in terms of downtime.

“One of the biggest challenges of this project has been to adapt to the Rail Administration’s processes for project execution, such as preparing master plans. Nonetheless, it’s been a great learning experience, and has given us many ideas that hopefully can be used in other projects as well,” says Head of the tunnel safety team, Johan Kr. Møller.


A new team for a growing market

COWI’s team has come up with several cost-effective solutions that could mean great improvements for Oslo Tunnel’s fire safety, and for the approximately 60,000 passengers passing through the tunnel every day. Improvements include fire protection of structures, new exit tunnel, improved means for evacuation and improved safety information. 

COWI's team consists of experts from both Norway and Denmark, and Møller eyes great opportunities ahead in the market of fire safety.

“There is a huge market here, especially in Norway, but throughout Scandinavia. Tunnels get bigger and deeper, and many older tunnels have not been maintained properly. We have about 700 railway and 1000 road tunnels in Norway alone, so there is definitely a potential market here,” says Møller.

LAST UPDATED: 16.09.2016