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Help!! Emergency or negligence? Who pays for the rescue?

“Don’t go alone Plan your route with maps and guidebooks. Any step, no matter how small, may go wrong and involve you in a problem. Take a means of notification and localisation. You can help the search and rescue services better if you have prepared the route. In the event of emergency, call 112 (SOS) or 062 (Guardia Civil)”.

As their name suggests, high-risk sports involve hazards that could lead to a rescue attempt. These cost money. Some Autonomous Communities such as the Basque Country, Castilla y León and Navarra are beginning to charge fees when negligence is involved.

The emergency services always respond, even if it’s a false alarm. The person to blame will be fined under these circumstances.

The costs of a rescue vary depending on the personnel involved. A helicopter flight costs between 5,000 and 8,000 euros in Spain, although a normal mountain rescue (by a rescue team) ranges between 200 and 300 euros.

You may have to pay if negligence is involved.

In Asturias, the BOPA (Official Gazette of the Principality of Asturias) stipulates that negligence occurs when you could have avoided the rescue. Did you respect the alerts, enter areas with known hazards, made sure your equipment was in good condition…?

Water sports too

In the Canary Islands you must pay a fee if you are rescued while doing high-risk sports such as diving, long-distance swimming, windsurf, flysurf, sea kayaking or rowing at sea.

We recommend that you cover your back with a policy with the right coverage. Apart from rescue, it could include medical aid, repatriation and transport of luggage and equipment.

If in doubt… you know where we are.