“The cow protects the calf and in the sad extreme cases, with an attack on the people.” In a guide-Video of the chamber of agriculture of Tyrol, and since 2018 to the danger that can threaten hikers with dogs on the mountain pastures in the Alps. A judgment of the land court of Innsbruck causes a stir: After a deadly cow attack on a German tourist in Austria the defendant is a farmer pay the survivors compensation.

The husband and the son of the victim, received a total of around 180,000 euros. In addition, the farmer had to pay the husband a monthly pension of 1,200 euros and to the son, of 350 euros, informed the court. The judgment was unrealistic and harmful to the Coexistence of tourism and Alpine farming, was the chamber of agriculture.

According to the court, the farmer had warned only insufficient against the dangers of a Herd of cows, in calf to grow up. The established warning signs had not been sufficient. “At a critical point as the scene of the accident, fenced-off areas for the protection of the highest Good, of human life are necessary, and due to the low cost, reasonable,” argued the court.

45-Year-old was trampled to death

The 45-year-old dog owner from Rhineland-Palatinate had been trampled in the summer of 2014 in the Tyrolean Stubai valley, the Herd of cows that clearly wanted to protect the calves in front of the dog, to death. The woman had fixed, according to the court, the dog leash with a carabiner to the hip.

you would need to know according to the court, that the mother cows can react aggressively to dogs. It was careless to fix the dog so that he could not be immediately released. “The probability of an immediate attack was due to the other behavior of the Victim but very low,” the court said. The Prosecutor’s office had discontinued the criminal investigation against the farmer 2014.

If the verdict against the the farmer’s appeal has been announced, confirmed, have an enormous impact on tourism and pastoralism, criticized the chamber of agriculture of Austria. A mandatory fencing would be the mountain farmer is not financially reasonable and would, in many places, the end of the grazing economy, said the President of the chamber of agriculture, Josef Moosbrugger. Alone Tirol has over 15,000 kilometres of marked Hiking and mountain trails.

Fears and uncertainty among farmers

The verdict evokes among the farmers of extreme anxiety and uncertainty. The farmers ask me if they should drive the cows to the pasture, or whether they should block the Alpine pastures completely,” said the President of the Tyrolean chamber of agriculture, Josef Hechenberger. This would affect many footpaths. It should also be thinking about the cows in the barn. A further variant would be that dogs would no longer be tolerated on pastures in the future, because so far, in every incident, the dogs involved had been.

“It’s about a specific accident at a specific position,” said court spokesman Andreas Stutter. At the scene of the accident, it was the most recently used way from the valley to the mountain. In the immediate vicinity of a usually very well-attended restaurant with 220 seats. “By the inevitably frequent encounter of walkers (with and without dogs) is the probability of irritation of the herd is high, which led, ultimately, to increased aggressiveness of the herd,” wrote the judge in the judgment.

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Teodora Torrendo is an investigative journalist and is a correspondent for European Union. She is based in Zurich in Switzerland and her field of work include covering human rights violations which take place in the various countries in and outside Europe. She also reports about the political situation in European Union. She has worked with some reputed companies in Europe and is currently contributing to USA News as a freelance journalist. As someone who has a Masters’ degree in Human Rights she also delivers lectures on Intercultural Management to students of Human Rights. She is also an authority on the Arab world politics and their diversity.

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