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400 tourists evacuated from Schilthorn by helicopter

About 400 tourists were evacuated by helicopter on Thursday afternoon from Birg cable car station (2677 metres) on the cable way from Mürren to Schilthorn. When the cable car arrived at the station at 11:00 it developed a fault. The fault could not be fixed immediately and a storm was forecast. The company decided to evacuate all tourists by helicopter. The tourist were bought down to Birg from the summit by cable car, and evacuated from there to Mürren by helicopter. By 15:30 all 400 had been flown down to Mürren.
The Schilthorn cablecar is made up of 4 sections: Stechelberg-Gimmelwald, Gimmelwald-Mürren, Mürren-Birg and Birg-Schilthorn.

Thought some of you might find this interesting.
Original article (in German only, you will have to run it through a translator): https://bazonline.ch/panorama/vermischtes/defekt-stoppt-schilthornbahn-400-touristen-mit-helis-ausgeflogen/story/18086269

Posted by
5017 posts

Darn, sorry I missed that! A free helicopter tour of the Alps - so cool!!!

Posted by
7606 posts

I have such a fear of heights that this scares me to death. HOWEVER...I acknowledge that if you have to get stuck somewhere and choppered out, the Swiss are consummate pros at it. Can't believe they evac'd 400 people that quickly.

Posted by
6036 posts

Ditto what David said.

Now, when does the ticket price go up to recoup the chopper expense?

Posted by
3280 posts

We went to Schilthorn in January of 2017. Our cable car started the trip up to Birg and we ended up having to go back down to Murren while they fixed it?? I was told this isn't an uncommon occurrence. I'm a little claustaphobic. I will now be carrying what my kids refer to as "mom's happy pills" when I ride in gondolas/cable cars. I have to admit riding in a helicopter would be pretty cool. But pretty sure I would be pretty unhappy if stuck in a malfunctioning cable car. I was caught in an elevator once with a bunch of babbling school kids. I credit my friend with keeping me from putting gags on them all. ;)

Posted by
27 posts

Wow! We were on that very cable car just 4 days before this event. I'm having a hard time picturing how they landed helicopters at Birg. It really is just a ledge, and I don't remember a helipad. But obviously there was something there they could land on, because they did. Exciting. I kind of wish we had experienced it.

Posted by
66 posts

Chris, we were at the Birg station on June 21, getting ready to go down when the lifts were closed. Three hours later, we were treated to a two minute ride down to Murren by helicopter. (My first helicopter ride ever, and yes, Anthony, there's just a ledge to land on) Everyone in the Schilthorn organization and the people of Air Glaciers were wonderful and professional. In the mail this past Monday, we received a letter from Schilthorn "apologising unreservedly" for any discomfort and inconvenience, along with a coupon good until the end of the year 2019 for a free round trip back up. We're planning on Italy next fall, but I think we'll have to put a little detour into the trip. Can't let a good coupon go to waste!

(Ugh- I've tried but can't attach a photo of the letter and coupon or photos of the helicopter...is it possible?)