Scout plunges to death from medieval tower

Safety questions are being raised at a historic tourist attraction in the Swiss city of Fribourg after a 20-year-old man apparently plunged to his death from the medieval Dürrenbuhl tower.

Scout plunges to death from medieval tower
View of the medieval tower. Photo: Fribourg Tourism

The victim was visiting the landmark tower during a meeting of scouts when it appears from the initial evidence that he accidentally fell from the 26-metre-high structure, Fribourg cantonal police said in a statement on Monday.

Emergency services and police were contacted around 2.40am on Sunday after the man was discovered, unconscious, at the base of the tower, the statement said.

Despite significant efforts the victim could not be revived, police said.

Investigators have launched an investigation to determine the exact circumstances of the accident.

The victim lived in the district and was participating in a meeting of Fribourg scouting supervisors held in the publicly owned tower, local daily La Liberté reported online.

“It was a private, unofficial evening at which no children were present,” Charles de Reyff, spokesman for Fribourg scouts told the newspaper.

“It was carried out in the tower, property of the state and frequently occupied by the group of  scouts from Maggenburg (a community near Fribourg).”

A meeting of scout leaders from the canton has been called for a “debriefing” on the incident and a discussion about the use fo scout facilities for private events, De Reyff said.

It appears that the victim, responsible for a group of scouts in Fribourg, fell around 19 metres, La Liberté said. 

The Dürrenbuhl tower originally dates from 1370 when it was part of city fortifications, according to the Fribourg Tourism office.

 A rampart attached to the tower was demolished in 1840 to make way for the original Gottéron bridge (later replaced by another in 1960).


Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.