Action scenes like in a Hollywood film took place on Wednesday on the Dau near Greifenburg: A canoeist capsized and then drifted unconscious downstream. The crew of the police helicopter managed to rescue it with a daring maneuver: The “dragonfly” hovered over the 65-year-old, who was then recovered over the runners.
Pilot Klaus Jäger and flight rescuer Michael Bachlechner never trained such a maneuver; however, it seemed the only way to save the man. “All other helicopters were in action and a rescue attempt by the Steinfeld police patrol had previously failed,” said the pilot about the “Kärntner Krone”. The exhausted man had been unable to hold the line.
Michael Bachlechner crouched on the runner of the “Libelle” and Klaus Jäger hovered with the helicopter directly above the canoeist at the speed of the river Drau. Just above the surface of the water, Bachlechner then grabbed the man by the life jacket and held him tight.
Jäger: “We flew to a sandbank where a fireman had already secured himself and was taking over the patient. While we were fetching the emergency doctor, fellow firefighters helped with the resuscitation. ”The 65-year-old was finally flown to the clinic by the rescue helicopter“ RK1 ”. The pilot: “Unfortunately we have no information about his state of health, but we really hope that he will get through!”
In addition to “Libelle” and “RK1”, the Steinfeld, Kleblach and Radlach fire departments were in action with five vehicles and a boat, police patrols from Steinfeld and Möllbrücke, a first responder and Dr. Franz Josef Leitner.