Safety in tunnels - Runaway cows in Hiefler Tunnel


Around two dozen runaway cows and calves have caused traffic chaos with roadblocks and two accidents with easy injures on the Tauern motorway and the B159 in Salzburg. Two animals died. Rescue service spent hours trying to capture the cattle. The train service between Golling and Sulzau has also been temporarily suspended.
20 to 30 cattle had been running on the A10 in the area Lueg after the north portal of Hiefler tunnels carriageway in Salzburg. According to firefighter’s statement, the animals were running to the southern portal of the tunnel due to bad weather damaged the fence of their pastures. One animal was hit by a car and killed on spot. Another car came ahead and hit the other cow which also could not have been saved.


Fig.1 Frightened cows running in the Hiefler tunnel

The 75-year-old handlebar and his co-driver were slightly injured in the collision. They were brought by the Red Cross to a hospital. What followed was an hour-long investigation. The police had to block traffic on the motorway, both northbound and southbound, because some cows were running in both tunnels of Hieflertunnels. The lock of the A10 lasted 3 hours. Since several animals had run toward Golling, this area of the trunk road had to be closed to early morning hours.

Some frightened cattle arrived on a steep embankment and were running towards or back. Five calves were recovered using a crane of the fire and even the one which was plunged into a water chute, could also be saved. While the mountains action, one calf jumped over a guardrail on the track system ÖBB. Again, it took some time before it was captured.

Source:, 10.06.2016./ private picture

Author: Matea Uhlik-Vidovic, June 13, 2016