Water Rescue Hit by Licence Issues

500 of the Bavarian water rescue teams are under risk of closing as a new license is now required for manning heavy boats.

The new EU sailing scheme requires a special license that most of the drivers do not have. With the old B-series sailing licence which allowed the sailing of vehicles up to 7.5 tones there was no problem. However, the new license, BE, costs up to 1,000 euros and not many volunteers from the water rescue can afford this.

A speedy resolution is urged and help is needed from the public sector. Water rescue is financed today by eleven million euros per year from membership fees and donations. But only about 100 000 euros is reimbursed from health insurance and 1.4 million from the relevant ministry. If this problem is not fixed now, the operational capability of water rescue in some places will be at risk.

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