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Old 11.09.2021, 20:07
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Death on the Reuss

After so long in Switzerland, I'm used to reading about accidents that take place in the mountains and on rivers in Monday morning's papers. An accident happened last Sunday on the river Reuss, and on this occasion I've really had to think about it a lot. In short, a family of 5 were in an inflatable dinghy, which hit a submerged tree stump near Mülligen. The boat capsized, the parents and two eldest boys were able to get free but the youngest daughter (7) has been missing since. All were wearing life jackets.

I've also got young children and we do this route typically a couple of times a year in inflatable canoes. It's wild enough in places to get the heart pumping a little, but generally a fantastic day trip. This year we've not done it after the dreadful weather this summer. With all the trees that came down in the heavy snowfall over the winter coupled with the heavy rains and high flow rate of the river can only combined to make the river particularly dangerous this year. Almost a perfect storm.

I'll be sure to do a practice run on my own to sight out any logs or fallen trees when, or even if, we do make the trip again. Stay safe people.

Schlauchboot-Drama auf Reuss bei Mülligen AG: Jetzt spricht der Vater
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Old 11.09.2021, 20:11
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Re: Death on the Reuss

Rivers can be so unpredictable. Many years ago, I lost a close family friend to a river accident as well. My heart goes out to the family.
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Old 11.09.2021, 20:26
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Re: Death on the Reuss

Likewise, also lost a friend to a river rafting accident. It always pains me to hear about tragedy happening during a family leisure outing; when something completely unexpected occurs leading to death... just makes me choke up and appreciate how fragile life is.
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Old 11.09.2021, 20:54
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Re: Death on the Reuss

River rafting accidents are Switzerlands "speciality".

There are quite a number of infamous ones that even made international headlines.

And those are always tours with trained guides.

If they failed, it wasn't just because of bumbling and negligence.
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Old 15.09.2021, 20:35
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Re: Death on the Reuss

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I'll be sure to do a practice run on my own to sight out any logs or fallen trees when, or even if, we do make the trip again. Stay safe people.
The Cantonal Wasserpolizei is probably a good place to ask for unusual dangers.

As for the accident ... a 7yr old has exactly zero business being on a river like the Reuss in a rubberboat, even less during high waters. Same for the 10yr old boy. The fact that they needed the help of a passerby to prevent even more deaths shows why.
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Old 16.09.2021, 08:22
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Re: Death on the Reuss

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The Cantonal Wasserpolizei is probably a good place to ask for unusual dangers.

As for the accident ... a 7yr old has exactly zero business being on a river like the Reuss in a rubberboat, even less during high waters. Same for the 10yr old boy. The fact that they needed the help of a passerby to prevent even more deaths shows why.
I’ve canoed most rivers in Switzerland like the Thur, Aare, Limmat, Rhein etc. Reuss is more challenging but I’ve never felt in any real danger. Any given summer weekend you see hundreds in inflatables going down there. I think it was the conditions rather than the river. Maybe the authorities should have put up warnings?
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Old 16.09.2021, 11:00
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Re: Death on the Reuss

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I’ve canoed most rivers in Switzerland like the Thur, Aare, Limmat, Rhein etc. Reuss is more challenging but I’ve never felt in any real danger. Any given summer weekend you see hundreds in inflatables going down there. I think it was the conditions rather than the river. Maybe the authorities should have put up warnings?
Even auslanders like us noticed this summer was a bit different, just another case of common sense not being that common.

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Old 16.09.2021, 13:01
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Re: Death on the Reuss

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I’ve canoed most rivers in Switzerland like the Thur, Aare, Limmat, Rhein etc. Reuss is more challenging but I’ve never felt in any real danger. Any given summer weekend you see hundreds in inflatables going down there. I think it was the conditions rather than the river.
You don't come across as a small child.

Of the people in the inflatables, how many are younger than their early-ish teens? And how well can they swim?
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Maybe the authorities should have put up warnings?
Absolutely. They should also have to place "mind the crevasses" signs on glaciers, and "a fall may be harmful" in the mountains.
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