A hiker (31) from Vienna fell into the icy Salza near Mariazell with his dogs and washed into a cave. A mountain rescuer from Styria became a hero in need. He describes the spectacular rescue operation to the “Krone”.
A spectacular rescue operation with a large number of emergency services took place near Mariazell on Saturday afternoon: walkers had heard cries for help near the Salza and found a woman with a dog in a hollow in the river.
A dog didn’t make it
According to the police, the 31-year-old woman from Vienna may have walked two dogs, one of which ended up in the current of the river. In an attempt to get the animal out, the woman herself was caught in the rushing water and pushed into a cave with her four-legged friend. Unfortunately, the second dog must have drowned.
Given the strong current and the rugged terrain, the emergency services embarked on a complicated rescue operation and a race against time. Divers from the fire brigade were called, but because the condition of the woman in the icy water threatened to deteriorate rapidly, mountain rescuer Thomas Strasser himself went on the attack and drove into the cave in a small dinghy tied with a rope.
Wienerin suffered from severe hypothermia
“The woman squatted with her dog in a bay of the pitch-dark cave and trembled all over her body. She would never have gotten out of there on her own with the current,” the Upper Styrian tells the “Krone”. He brought the 31-year-old and her dog by boat and with the help of the fire service to the coast. The woman was flown by helicopter with severe hypothermia and shock. Her sister cared for the rescued dog.
“Such a deployment is very rare. Thank God it turned out well,” lifesaver Strasser was relieved.
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