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Reindeer accident hospitalises a dozen Finnish soldiers in Lapland

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By Euronews
A reindeer has hospitalised a dozen Finnish soldiers in Lapland.
A reindeer has hospitalised a dozen Finnish soldiers in Lapland.   -   Copyright  REUTERS/Hannah McKay

Battle-hardened soldiers are no strangers to the threat of injury, but they will not have been expecting a reindeer to be involved.

But that's exactly what happened in Finland on Tuesday evening. 

A dozen soldiers were hospitalised in Lapland when an armoured transport vehicle swerved to avoid a reindeer and hit another military vehicle, the Finnish military said. 

The recruits of the Kainuu (East) Brigade were in a traffic accident

Twenty-eight people were in both vehicles at the time of the accident. Twelve of them were hospitalised, but all had been given the all-clear by Wednesday evening.

Five recruits are still under observation at the Central Hospital in Lapland.

In a statement issued by the Finnish military, the Kainnuu (East) Brigade said: "A Pasi armoured transport vehicle hit the vehicle in front of it, after swerving to avoid a reindeer."

In the late summer, up to 340,000 reindeer can be found in Lapland, and pose a real risk for drivers, especially as they are not afraid of motor vehicles.

These deer travel long distances to find food frequently venture out on the roads to escape mosquitoes that fall on the region's forests.

In early winter, when the days are shortest, up to 20 reindeer can be involved in daily collisions, according to the Finnish Road Safety Agency.

Local defence exercises took place in a number of locations around Finland.

The Finnish military had been conducting several local exercises in the region according to a press statement in order "serve to develop local defence readiness and capability".