A group of 10 to 12 rollerskiers are counting their blessings after surviving a serious rollerski accident on Tuesday in Akershus, Norway.
According to Norwegian news outlet Dagbladet, acclaimed Norwegian skiers Øystein Pettersen and Thomas Alsgaard were amongst the group of skiers in the August 19 accident.
The rollerskiers were out for one of their scheduled workouts when they descended down a steep, unknown hill in a large group. Soon after, the majority of the skiers lost control and fell. No cars were involved.
Pettersen told Dagbladet that the group barely knew the terrain and that the descent had many tricky turns. At one corner, Pettersen said it became a choice to try and make the turn or crash into a ditch.
Pettersen said he chose the ditch.
After the crash, three unnamed skiers were sent to the local hospital. Two required stays in the emergency room.
Pettersen who was a stage winner in the recent Toppidrettsveka rollerski series, walked away with some large bruises on his shoulder and elbow in addition to a broken finger. According Dagbladet he will receive surgery on his broken finger in roughly four weeks.
Pettersen told the Norwegian news organization that he was lucky to have suffered so few injuries and is thankful that everyone in his group wore a helmet.
“We are all very shocked, and one must be glad it didn’t go even worse. It was idiotic to ski there… Such things should not happen. I grew up on the roller [skis], and the others in the group likewise. When I think of all you… who may not be as good and go without a helmet. We need your attention here to encourage people to wear helmets,” Pettersen said in a rough translation provided by Google Translate.