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Busy start to 2016 for Finnish police

New Year’s Eve is traditionally a busy time for law enforcement and emergency services, and the latest instalment was no exception.

Vuosiluku 2016 ilotulituksena.
Image: Yle Uutisgrafiikka

Finland saw a rowdy start to the New Year in many places, with Häme and Oulu police departments particularly busy as the country celebrated the start of 2016. Häme police said they dealt with several reported assaults, while officers in Oulu detained a number of people on suspicion of vandalism or fighting.

In Helsinki patrols were busy because of the relatively good weather, according to Inspector Esa Pennanen of the capital’s police force,

"I’d estimate that we’ve still had fewer call-outs than in previous years because of the calmer start to the evening," said Pennanen.

Firework accidents

The most serious incident in the Häme area occurred in Lahti, when a distress flare was apparently fired through the window of a private apartment at around 10pm. The flare burned in the apartment for a while before the woman who lived there extinguished a small fire it had started.

Elsewhere there were mishaps with fireworks—so far at least fourteen people have been treated for eye injuries caused by fireworks. Three of those patients suffered serious injuries.

In western Uusimaa, fire and rescue services were called out on 27 different occasions.

Police were also called out to deal with disturbances at reception centres for asylum seekers in Tampere, Jyväskylä and Forssa. There were no injuries in Tampere or Jyväskylä, but in Forssa one person was taken to hospital with a head injury. Police are investigating the case as suspected assault.

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