Are Austria’s water sports enthusiasts, especially boat and yacht owners, second-class citizens in times of Corona? This is a question one must inevitably ask oneself and the Austrian government when one compares the hectic pace with which Austrians were ordered back from Croatia as recently as August under the threat of quarantine at far too short notice, as it were, and looks at the pictures that a member from the Skigebiet Dachstein-West sent us on 27.12.2020. For those who should have forgotten in view of the worrying photos: Austria is in its third lockdown due to the coronavirus, most businesses are closed, apartments may only be left for good reason, and contacts between households have been massively restricted.
Member describes chaos at ski resort
However, things were quite different in the Dachstein-West ski resort. Here is the critical report of our member:
“The ski area is usually very large. This time, however, most of the ski area was closed, so you could de facto use only 2 lifts / gondolas. The crowds could therefore also not split up, but concentrated on these two slopes.
The ski area had no visible corona concept. No distance, partly no masks, partly no ffp2 masks and stewards who do not intervene. There was obviously no restriction of visitors either because the lifts and gondolas were completely overloaded.
People do not keep a distance by themselves and jostle as in times before the pandemic. One gets the impression, everyone relies on the fact that everything that is allowed is also sufficient to protect against infection. Ergo, if no one stands there and says “keep your distance,” people won’t keep their distance.
We have therefore ended the ski day after two descents and demanded the money back. The lady at the cashier initially said they had a Corona concept. When I then countered that it is not implemented, however, because no distance, etc., she got the operations manager, who then immediately said that we get our money back. He seemed very overwhelmed.
By the way, from the license plates we could see that people from Vienna, Salzburg and partly from Germany were there.”
Despite Corona lockdown no distance, partly without masks
The pictures, which the member supplied, offer an impressive proof that distance rules and mask obligation were partly not at all kept, the people in the queuing zones jostle themselves and the stewards watch the goings-on hopelessly overtaxed. This is the reality of the third lockdown in Austria. What do all those independent business owners who had to close their stores again have to say about this?
Travelers stood in traffic jams for 14 hours
So that no wrong tonality gets into the contribution: Of course SeaHelp begrudges the skiers their pleasure, quite particularly after so long “slope abstinence”. But please with correctly fitting mask and respecting the distance rules. What can be seen on the pictures from the skiing area Dachstein-West beats the barrel. Especially when you consider that actually the lockdown was ordered. How, please, will one explain this to Austrian water sports enthusiasts, who in August had to endure up to 14 hours in a traffic jam at the Karawankentunnel and were then only allowed to participate in social life again with subsequent quarantine or elaborate PCR testing.
Austria’s government is applying double standards
Obviously, double standards are applied here, the main thing is that the economy is doing well in the short term. In the long run, everyone pays for the consequences of irresponsible actions, in cash or with further entry restrictions. The Austrian Ministry of Health should take a close look at these conditions in the ski resorts when it once again wants to decide on entry restrictions for tourists returning to Austria, especially for water sports enthusiasts. They will definitely not forget these incidents.