Bavaria: New database to show alpine accident risks – Bavaria

With a new database, the Board of Trustees for Alpine Safety wants to point out the risk of accidents in mountaineering and thus help to avoid accidents. The aim is to make mountaineering even safer, said Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann (CSU) on Wednesday at the Kampenwandbahn in Aschau im Chiemgau. He referred to an annual grant of 90,000 euros for the Board of Trustees. It is planned to increase this to 110,000 euros in 2024.

The new central database records current accident events in the mountains in both summer and winter, so that accident blackspots can be identified, for example. All authorities involved as well as the alpine associations in the Free State have access to the statistics. The findings are published.

“It’s better to avoid an accident than to have to rescue mountaineers after an accident,” said Herrmann on the importance of prevention. Then the mountain rescue service would not even have to move out, whose members might have to endanger themselves during operations.

Alpine outdoor athletes can also make a contribution to their own safety with foresighted planning and good equipment: It is important that they pay attention to the appropriate equipment, especially since, according to the findings of the Alpine Board of Trustees, new and more demanding via ferrata are being built, said Herrmann. Many tours are becoming more difficult, athletes are overwhelmed or overestimate themselves. Good equipment can prevent falls, the minister said. “Unfortunately, not everyone is equipped with it.” Old or worn material, for example, must be checked regularly and replaced if necessary. Rescuers are often confronted with pure unreasonableness and still try to help, the minister acknowledged the mountain rescue service’s commitment.

According to Herrmann, the increasing number of e-mountain bikes is also causing more accidents and thus more use in the mountains, for example in neighboring Tyrol. With the electrically operated bikes, more and more people could drive to even more remote areas. The new database should also help here to identify accident black spots and then possibly defuse them.

The fact that the entire fleet of the police helicopter squadron in Bavaria is being replaced should also contribute to increasing security. As announced in spring, the Free State is investing 145 million euros in this and is gradually acquiring eight new Airbus H145 helicopters. The helicopter squadron is also used for mountain rescue, fire brigade, rescue services and civil protection operations. “Police helicopters are indispensable.” According to the ministry, 65 people died in the Bavarian Alps in 2022 and 68 in 2021.

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