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Trucker detained after a "weird" potato-spill on a key Denmark bridge

Copenhagen, Denmark — A 57-year-old truck driver was detained Thursday after loads of potatoes were found spilled on a key bridge linking two Danish islands, police have said. The driver was held on suspicion of causing reckless endangerment to life.

A first spill was reported on the westbound side of the Storebaelt bridge at 6.35 a.m. (0435 GMT), police spokesman Kenneth Taanquist said. The bridge connects the island where the capital, Copenhagen, is located to the rest of Denmark.

The Great Belt Bridge, Storebaelt, Denmark
The Great Belt Bridge suspension bridge over Storebaelt joins Funen to Zealand, as seen from Halskov rocks, Denmark, in a June 21, 2015 file photo. Tim Graham/Getty

A similar incident happened on the eastbound side a short time later, Tanquist added.

"It looks weird," he said. "We are working on two hypotheses: it is either an accident or it is something that has been done deliberately."

Police said the roads had become slippery and urged drivers to drive slowly. According to the Danish Road Directorate, lines of vehicles were reported on either side of the roughly 11-mile bridge and tunnel link between the islands of Funen, where Odense — Denmark's third largest city — is located, and Zealand, where Copenhagen sits.

A third incident of potatoes on the road was reported near the town of Kolding on the Jutland peninsula. Kolding is near the Storebaelt bridge.

Trucks are seen blockading traffic as a police vehicle approaches at Folehaven, Copenhagen, Denmark, May 15, 2023, during a protest against the government's proposal to tax diesel trucks carrying heavy loads. MADS CLAUS RASMUSSEN/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP/Getty

The new measure has drawn protests from truck drivers. In recent weeks, they peacefully blocked highways and main roads throughout the country, claiming the tax will make their livelihoods unsustainable. A majority in the Danish parliament argue it is vital as the continued use of gas and diesel-fueled trucks is environmentally unsustainable.

As of 2025, the drivers of gas and diesel-fueled vehicles over 3.5 tons (7, 716 pounds) will be taxed 1.3 kroner ($0.19) per kilometer (roughly half a mile) driven.

Torben Dyhl Hjorth, a spokesman for the protesting truckers, said on Facebook that they "strongly distance themselves from today's 'stunts'." He added that they were planning a protest at a later stage which "can be felt but without risk to people's lives and well-being."

  • Climate Change
  • Agriculture
  • Electric Vehicle
  • Environment
  • Denmark
  • Pollution
  • European Union

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