Cabin guard saves 14-year-old from drowning Skip to content

Cabin guard saves 14-year-old from drowning

The cabin guard in Langidalur valley in Thórsmörk, south Iceland, Helga Gardarsdóttir, saved a 14-year-old boy from drowning in the glacial river Krossá on Wednesday. A group of tourists on the other side of the river witnessed the event.

The guard reacted quickly and it only took three or four minutes until the boy was in the clear, Morgunbladid reports.

“It was a long moment,” said Gardarsdóttir. The boy was caught by the stream and Gardarsdóttir, who is an experienced tour guide, followed him on a tractor and drove into the river so the boy could grab hold of the tractor wheel.

“I knew that if I were to go into the river myself the stream would catch me too,” Gardarsdóttir explained. Once the boy had gotten hold of the tractor wheel, she could grab his hand. “I used my body weight to pull him towards me […], he had become pretty tired and weak. Then I held him until we were rescued.”

A driver brought the boy to dry land. He recovered quickly and only had a few scratches from the stones on the river. “It went unbelievably well,” Gardarsdóttir said.

The cabin guard said most Icelanders know how dangerous it can be to go too close to glacial rivers, which often have strong currents, but she said foreign tourists need to be better informed about the dangers.

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