Ardèche: the fatal canoe accident was avoidable according to professionals in the sector

Ardèche: the fatal canoe accident was avoidable according to professionals in the sector
Ardèche: the fatal canoe accident was avoidable according to professionals in the sector

After the canoe accident in which two Austrian tourists died this Sunday, May 5, it appears that the place on the Chassezac river where the tragedy took place is not at all conducive to this sporting activity. Philippe Crouzet, the president of the Chassezac canoe rental union, explains this Monday that the accident took place on a part which is not offered for navigation by rental companies, and that in any case, given the flow of the river, the rental companies are not offering rentals at the moment. The professional goes further, according to him even sports practitioners do not go there.

“It’s a part where there are dams, dikes, so it’s a sensitive place. What happened is incomprehensible, especially since the part on which they sailed is of little interest, in terms of landscape. It’s really regrettable. They took even more risks because they left alone, we don’t do that when we play sports. It is an accident which is not within the usual framework of practice.”

The Chassezac is one of the rivers considered easy, according to professionals, less sporty for example than the Ardèche river, subject to prefectural restrictions (based on the water height recorded at the level of Vallon-Pont-d’Arc: below of 0.50 for the Gorges, below 0.10 for the upper part of the river, below -0.30 for the entire river). According to the first elements of the investigation, the Austrian couple was caught in a waterfall, trapped by a water reservoir.

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