Tuesday Newspapers: Finnish Inequality, Vaasa Lights Up, Truck Fatalities Highlight Blind Spot Risks | New

A new battery plant in the west coast city gets the green light and two similar fatal crashes raise road safety fears.

A model of the Vaasa “gigafactory” which never existed. Image: Vaasan kaupunki

The report by the Social Democratic Foundation Kalevi Sorsa divides the country’s municipalities into four groups, ranking them according to development indicators such as median income, employment rate and availability of broadband.

Five of the eight municipalities in the Tampere municipal area fall into the most prosperous category, the newspaper reports, while one, Orivesi, is considered to be part of “middle Finland”.

Mayor Antero Alenius from another “middle Finnish” municipality, Hämeenkyrö, said the small towns of Aamulehti should benefit from all efforts to distribute wealth and development more evenly across Finland.

“Even if people do not want to move completely from the city to quieter places, it must be possible for them to live there part time. Municipal services must be able to manage them,” he said.

“We have to find different kinds of life outside of dense cities. Food and wood don’t grow in cities. The rest of Finland is the Finland of industry and raw materials,” he continued. .

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Vaasa strengthens in new drum deal

“Vaasa has a strong ecosystem of battery materials, reliably available renewable energies and sustainable raw materials” Robert macleodJohnson chief executive Matthey told the newspaper.

Vaasa has focused on building a reputation as a battery manufacturing hub in recent years. Although the city has made no attempt to host electric car maker Tesla’s so-called gigafactory, local and state authorities have continued to solicit new bids. The 2021 state budget includes € 300 million in funding for the government group Finnish Minerals, which is a co-investor in the new project

The city is helped by its proximity to many of the raw materials needed for battery production, writes Kauppalehti.

“Few battery factories can be found at a similar distance from mineral reserves, even on a global scale, which is certainly a major plus. It comes very close to achieving almost complete self-sufficiency in key minerals,” said the Minister of Economic Affairs. Mika lintilä said the newspaper.

According to Kauppalehti, the plant could be operational by 2024.

Wave of truck accidents highlights blind spots

The tabloid describes how two recent deaths, that of a nine-year-old girl in Espoo last Friday and that of an elderly pedestrian in Tampere on Monday, were caused by trucks turning bends.

“Although the investigation of the accidents is ongoing, they are linked by three things,” writes the newspaper. “A truck turning right, a crosswalk with a traffic light and what is called the heavy truck blind spot.”

“Even though the cab of the truck is elevated, there are areas around the vehicle that the driver cannot see from the driver’s seat,” said Toni Vuoristo of the road safety organization Liikenneturva.

Regulators are well aware of the problem, Ilta-Sanomat says. By 2025, the European Truck Regulatory Agency will introduce rules significantly increasing the size of windows in truck cabs. New systems based on radars, cameras and other sensors are also under development, the newspaper writes.

But for many people, the changes will come too late. According to Ilta-Sanomat, 30 cyclists and 22 pedestrians were killed by vehicles in Finland in 2020.

“Each of them was one too many,” said Liikenneturva Juha valtonen said the newspaper.

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