Schärding: 5 firefighters capsized with boat on the raging Inn

Schärding: 5 firefighters capsized with boat on the raging Inn

The men were on a workboat setting buoys in preparation for the district water rescue competition when a rope apparently got caught in the propeller. The boat, unable to maneuver, was pushed into the water on its rear side, tipped over into the river and drifted away. The crew fell into the water.

Four men were able to swim to the shore themselves, but one of the men had to be rescued in a raft because of the strong current, the fire department reported. Those involved escaped with a fright and no one was injured. “They started working again yesterday,” said Markus Furtner, commander of the Schärding fire department, in an interview with OÖNachrichten on Saturday. “They quickly changed and carried on.” The men were all wearing life jackets as required.

The boat was able to be turned over in Wernstein using a cable winch. The capsized boat was towed to Schärding together with the fire departments of Wernstein, Hub, Passau and the water rescue service.

“Meet with respect”

Although the accident ended well, it shows how unpredictable the situation on the Inn still is at present: “It is still a challenge. Even if the Inn is no longer flooded at the moment, the water level is still high. You have to treat that with respect.” There were “absolute professionals” on board, says Furtner. “One of the men used to work on the customs boat. They know exactly what they are doing. And even there, something can happen.” The Schärding fire department is dealing with the incident so proactively in order to raise awareness of the current situation on the Inn.

Furtner can well understand that the population is upset when the river remains closed despite the all-clear. “Of course we don’t like doing that. But it is still dangerous. If someone falls in, especially without a life jacket, they’re gone.”

Cancelling the competition, which is taking place today, Saturday, due to the water situation was not up for debate. “These are exactly the conditions our people train for. When the weather is nice, almost anyone can ride. But we are preparing specifically for that.” The current situation on the Inn is similar to the normal state of the Salzach, for example, says Furtner. However, the route has been adjusted and significantly shortened. While the ride normally takes 10 minutes, this time it will only take around 4 minutes. The youth competition, which begins in the afternoon, will be even shorter.

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Source: Nachrichten

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