Kornati Tragedy 10 Year Commemoration Starts in Vodice

Total Croatia News

The biggest Croatian firefighting tragedy happened on August 30, 2007, when 12 firefighters died on the Island of Kornati.

Some 60 cyclists, most of them firefighters, started the 4th Ultramarathon from Zagreb to Vodice three days ago, they covered 375 km and reached Vodice this morning around 10 a.m.


A march in the memory of the late firefighters will start at 5 p.m., Jutarnji reports on August 27, 2017, followed by a memorial futsal tournament, the motto of which is “Ovo nije kraj – posvećeno hrabrim ljudima.” Teams such as Futsal Dinamo, Heroji 2007, Vrgorac and Crnica will play in the tournament, and they will later be joined by stars including Dino Rađa, Darijo Šimić, Mario Stanić, Goran Vlaović and Stipe Pletikosa.

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Srce Kornatsko, Facebook

Thousands of lanterns were supposed to be released in Vodice, Zadar and Rijeka, as well as balloons in Zagreb, Split and Nova Gradiška, but the organizers gave up on the idea because firefighters said that they were dangerous and could actually cause more fires.

“Even though we had all the permits from relevant institutions, I do not wish to pressure my firefighter colleagues and friends who have been there and supported our ‘Srce Kornatsko’ initiative,” Ante Sladoljev, Chief of Vodice Volunteer Fire Department said in the official statement.

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Srce Kornatsko, Facebook

Kornati Tragedy

There were 750 fires in 2007 Croatian coast fires and one of them broke out on the island of Kornati. A team of 23 firemen was sent to the island.

According to Wikipedia, “the firefighters split into two teams, one with 6 firemen and the other with 17. The latter split up one more time when three firemen lost their communication gear and again when the fourth one went checking for the signal, while trying to call his superiors. The remaining 13 were stranded between two hills with no water whatsoever, since the large water canister landed 500 meters away from them. While searching for it, they got encircled by a wall of fire. Although the burning grass was only 10 cm tall, the firemen didn’t have the necessary equipment and had nowhere to run. In only a minute, six of them were killed instantly, while the other seven remained lying on the ground, badly burned, waiting for help more than two hours. After the rescue, they were sent to the hospital in Zadar and then transferred to hospitals in Zagreb and Split. Six of them died in hospital because of serious burns covering large areas of their bodies. The fire itself had nowhere to spread, and was soon naturally extinguished, bringing up many questions about the necessity of the intervention.”

The firefighters who were tragically killed in the fire included four professional firefighters from Šibenik Fire Department, four members of Tisno Volunteer Fire Department, and four members of Vodice Volunteer Fire Department. The only survivor of the accident was Frane Lučić from Tisno Volunteer Fire Department.


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