Refrigerator power outage leads to 1,200 people getting urgently vaccinated in Utrecht

Yesterday evening, the GGD urgently vaccinated 1,200 people in the Utrecht region with the Janssen vaccine. This was due to a power failure in the refrigerator that the vaccines were being stored in which compromised their shelf life.

Hundreds of eager people wanting to get their share of antibodies showed up at the vaccination site in Nieuwegein. Within two hours there were enough people to use the 1,200 doses, and the GGD was able to send the rest home, reports NOS.

What caused the outage?

The power cut was caused by a broken water pipe which caused the refrigerators that the Janssen vaccines were being kept in to shut off. If vaccines are left unrefrigerated for too long, they will spoil.

Who got vaccinated?

Due to the RIVM guidelines, employees from the vaccination centres, and people from the emergency services, such as firefighters from the Utrecht Security Region were invited first. Several hundred vaccines were used up in this way.

However, because the message had spread quickly on WhatsApp groups and other social media, the GGD decided to allow anyone who arrived at the location from 8.30 PM to get a shot.

Within half an hour, there was already a queue of 400 people at the door. Two hours later, the remaining 800 vaccines had been delivered.

The atmosphere at the vaccination site was upbeat. One of the women in the queue told RTV Utrecht that it felt like “standing in a festival queue.”

Would you have joined the queue? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

Feature image: Brenda Rocha Blossom/Deposit Photos

Jen Lorimer 🇿🇼
An avid tea drinker, Jen was born and raised in Zimbabwe. She moved to Utrecht in 2017 to pursue her history degree. She loves people-watching, canoeing the Utrecht canals, and observing how the Dutch come alive in summer. Having been traumatised by a Dutch circle party, Jen wants to help equip other internationals with tips and tricks to survive and thrive in this wonderful flat country.


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