European tourists found alive in Chilean volcanoApril 25th, 2011 - 11:39 am ICT by IANS
Santiago, April 25 (IANS/EFE) Rescue teams found alive two European tourists who had gone missing on the slopes of the Quetrupillan volcano in Chile’s southeastern La Araucania region, officials said.
Italian Anna Lisa Lombardo and Czech citizen Phillip Kunk were spotted Saturday afternoon in the Huililco sector within Villarrica National Park, where the volcano is located, some 800 km south of Santiago.
Both people were suffering from hypothermia and they were taken to San Francisco Hospital in the town of Pucon for medical attention.
The search for the tourists had been going on since Friday morning after the woman activated an emergency satellite device and communicated their plight to the coordinating center in Texas, which forwarded the information to the Chilean navy, which in turn passed it to the emergency management office.
The tourists entered Villarrica National Park April 18 and told park authorities that they were intending to hike an extreme tourist route called Villarrica Travel, a five-day journey.
Police, firefighters, army mountain troops and National Forestry Corporation rangers worked in harsh conditions to find the lost tourists.
Snow, rain and heavy winds prevented the search patrols from receiving air support, but they were able to find the tourists because the woman kept the satellite locator device turned on.
Quetrupillan volcano, which is 2,360 meters tall and is located in the Andes near the border with Argentina, is not currently active and its crater is partially filled by a glacier.
The tourists apparently got lost because the hiking trail was covered with snow, police said.
The pair had taken shelter at an improvised campsite and had very little food with them.
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Tags: araucania, chilean navy, chilean volcano, coordinating center, emergency management office, european tourists, forestry corporation, harsh conditions, hiking trail, hypothermia, kunk, lisa lombardo, little food, mountain troops, national forestry, park authorities, pucon, satellite device, satellite locator, tourist route