Anders Bjordal, a Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate engineer, told CNN that he saw there had been a “big clay slide” after being called to the scene at 4 p.m. (10 a.m. ET) Wednesday to offer guidance to the police and rescue team.
The slide was 650 meters (2,133 feet) wide and 150 meters (492 feet) deep, destroyed eight buildings, including four cabins which act as weekend residences, Bjordal added.
No one was harmed and all people were evacuated from the buildings, he said.
Bjordal said mudslides of this scale “seldom happen in Norway, maybe every one or two years.”
“Here in Alta there has never been a slide that big,” he said.
Alta municipality, located in the country’s northernmost Finnmark county, is known for its forests, mountain plateaus, coastal landscapes, and Northern Lights.
Officials will be monitoring the land for further movement over the coming days, as well as monitoring the sea and seabed level.
Next week, officials will take soil measurements, Bjordal added.