Monday, June 29, 2009

Seat Belts and Life Jackets

The Royal Coat of Arms of NorwayThere is the story of His Late Majesty King Olav V and seat belt regulations. The King had heard about the upcoming regulations, and at a Cabinet meeting he asked about the implications of these regulations for individual freedom. When the regulations were on the agenda, the proceeding Cabinet Secretary might have been nervous as to what His Majesty would say. No comments, however, were given.

Some time later though, the King was reported to have waved a piece of paper, containing a police dispensation for His Majesty personally from the requirement to wear a seat belt, at his Cabinet. He was also reported to have said:

I tricked you.
The late King was an enthusiastic sports sailor. So is his son and successor, His Majesty King Harald V.

The royal sailing boats are named “Fram.”

On the first weekend of May last, Dagbladet quoted Verdens Gang, and His Majesty is reported to have said:
I will not wear a life jacket. I have never worn a life jacket in “Fram,” and I will not today either.
As additional information Dagbladet adds:
King Harald visiting his old boat, where he is teach 15 young sailors in the project Nor Steam. After the statement the King got, [according to] VG [Verdens Gang], a jacket [discreetly] stuck in his hand, which he after polite preasure pulled over his head before the boat left shore.

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