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Austrian Mountain Rescue Service offers

By Sara Francis (Anchorage, Alaska/USA) & Gerald Lehner (Salzburg, Austria)

In the mountains things can happen faster than one can imagine. Regardless of weather conditions the Austrian Mountain Rescue Service (AMRS) – “Österreichischer Bergrettungsdienst"? - is poised to respond to retrieve individuals from even the most difficult and dangerous terrain.

AMRS employs more than 11,000 of the best trained rescuers in all of Austria - with nearly 1,400 of those experts in the province of Salzburg. All men and women are volunteers with professional experience and access to the six most mountainous Austrian provinces including the surrounding of Austria’s capital Vienna.

However, Austrian federal law requires the cost of search and rescue (SAR) action to be covered by those rescued rather than by public social insurance or the rescue association.

SAR in the mountains can be very expensive; AMRS has developed a solution to the problem of repaying the cost of rescue. They have chosen to offer the most favorably priced rescue insurance available anywhere. It can be used worldwide, to cover the costs of your search and rescue - any mountain range and skiing or snowboarding area on earth!

By paying a minimum of 24 Euro annually policy holders (as special patrons of AMRS) will receive quality insurance against SAR costs up to a 15,000 Euro maximum. The policy covers all immediate family members or life partners including children less than 18 years of age - within one household, worldwide.

In essence, this develops a fund from which rescue costs can be repaid and prevents any sole individual from bearing the total cost of their rescue.

A one week search for a missing person could easily cost 20,000 Euros. The funds paid back to AMRS for rescues are used solely for training, search and rescue equipment and nationwide alert-system maintenance and upgrades. No member of the Austrian Mountain Rescue Services receives monetary compensation for their efforts.

An example of such a search that lasted nearly two weeks and involved hundreds of forces and several helicopters was that of Helmut Simon of Nuremburg, who was killed during a hike in the mountains of Gastein valley in the Austrian province of Salzburg. The man was known worldwide. He and his wife, in 1991, were tourists to the Schnalstal glacier in the Ötztal Alps, near Hauslabjoch on the border between Austria and Italy. The Simons are credited with the discovery of Ötzi the Iceman a preserved mummy from 3300 B.C.

Rest assured AMRS will provide such help for every missing person, not only for VIPs.

“By paying 24 Euro for one year you can destroy every fear of paying high costs for SAR and be at ease during your travels or skiing trips in the mountains,"? said Estolf Mueller, provincial chief of staff AMRS Salzburg. “One hour for one specialist of the Mountain Rescue Service is 38 Euro."?

By investing in the AMRS insurance plan, policy holders (as special patrons of AMRS) are investing in themselves and the well-being of their fellow outdoor enthusiasts.

Payment can be made via credit card or direct deposit from a valid bank account. Please transfer 24 EURO or more to our account 2618 at Salzburger Sparkasse (BLZ 20404, IBAN: AT142040400000002618, BIC: SBGSAT2S), you and your family will be insured for one year beginning from the next day.  

More information is available under:
phone ++43/(0)662/83 08 88