IN RESCUE MISSIONS AGAIN
Kornati fire claims eleven fire fighters died
ZAGREB, Croatia — A firefighter critically injured last week while battling a blaze on Kornati island died on Monday (September 3rd). Seven other firefighters died there, trapped by the flames. Three remain hospitalised in critical condition. Prosecutors have charged a 20-year old employee of the Kornati National Park with starting the deadly blaze, by tossing a burning cigarette butt into dry grass. (Vecernji List – 04/09/07; HRT, RTRS, Javno, AP – 03/09/07) .
I joined helicopter rescue team to help firemans. We found them 2 and half hours after we recived call for help: But we have not recived any information about dead or injuries.
Six firemen died and seven were injured – four critically – Thursday in what was described as the worst disaster in Croatia’s firefighting history. The firefighters were trapped while trying to extinguish a wildfire on Kornat island, on Croatia’s central Adriatic Coast. The island is the largest in the Kornati archipelago of 150 islands, covering 320 kilometres square of sea off Zadar, 300 kilometres south of Zagreb.
I was head of the mountain rescue service, and I told national television HTV that the entire unit was trapped in an area covered by tall, dry grass. Than I said the area was uninhabited criticized the decision to send the men there.
It is the worst tragedy I ever saw, and I have has been engaged in rescue operations over more than two decades.
More about Kornati tragedy: http://injuries
More about rescuing: www.gss.hr