Walkers sharing their experiences

Archive for the tag '#accident'

Self Guided walks

English June 6th, 2014

Madeira is well known for its walking facilities, and we noticed that more and more visitors to Madeira are walking on their own by using various information they find in books. Unfortunately, books are published in large quantities and are not regular updated with changes due to landslides and maintenance issues. Secondly, these books are translated from 1 standard language. This is causing serious problems on Madeira.

Nature Meetings is contacted by the local authorities as soon as a walker is in difficulties. With our experience we locate the casualty, make an assessment and contact the emergency services to advice them how to handle and which tools are required.

Most of these accidents are walkers who are walking by themselves. With the aftercare we supply we noticed that most of these walkers used some kind of documentation (books, Internet or information by friend and/or family).

We understand the reasons why people like to walk on their own, however not everyone is aware of the walking conditions on Madeira (that could change daily!).

Therefore you should take precautions before you decide to walk on your own.

  • Get all the walking conditions before the start of the walk, such as: weather, vertigo, tunnels, landslides, duration, and distance.
  • Where do you start and finish (is there transport).
  • Inform your accommodation where you going to walk, what time do you leave and what time do you expect to return. Leave your contact details with your accommodation.
  • Prepare yourself properly with: shoes, clothing, walking equipment (as long as you prepare for the worst, you should be ok).
  • Ensure that you have a mobile with you, and that you have the numbers from the emergency services (be aware not everyone speaks your language).

In the previous article we published more advice.

As I wrote earlier, Madeira experienced last years an increase of the casualty rate (mostly broken bones, cuts and bruises, including a few fatalities). Therefore I would advise you to consider your options.

With the transport costs, loss in holiday time, Health & Safety and all nature related information in mind, you will realise that Guided walks are saver and cheaper.

Whilst I do understand that you might want to walk on your own, you must realise the dangers you might face.

Please, consider your options!

Certified Mountain Guides

English November 24th, 2009

Madeira is a walking paradise for any “Nature- Lover”. To ensure that you enjoy your walk, we strongly recommend that you walk with Certified Mountain guide. Your safety is paramount and to ensure that you receive the best possible service available on Madeira, we only employ local guides who are in possession of a Madeira Mountain Guide Certificate.

For obvious reasons, safety starts before the walk and it is crucial that everyone is prepared for the challenge what is waiting for them. Walking the Levadas of Madeira or any other Nature walk brings its challenges and therefore we advice that every walker is wearing layered clothing (what is easy to remove) and has water proofs with them. Other requirements are: sun protection and water (if possible a torch).

Certified Mountain Guide

The highly trained mountain guides studied for 1 year, coffering everything in relation to walking on Madeira. This combination of responsibilities from both parties and Madeira’s walking facilities will give you a pleasant and relaxed walking experience.

Unfortunately, over the years more and more people have entered the walking industry, pretending to be a guide. These illegal “guides” are putting walkers life’s at risk, and are unable to supply the service, information and safety.

This situation has caused great concerns on Madeira and due to this there is an increase of accidents. To ensure that your guide is qualified with what he/she is doing we advise you to ask your guide to show you their license. Certified guides are proud with their profession and with their commitment to follow the very intensive guiding course.

Over the last few years we have seen more and more walking groups visiting Madeira. As walking lovers, we are very excited showing everyone this beautiful island. However some of these groups are bringing their own walking-leader who has no (Madeira) experience nor are qualified to guide. This is not only illegal according to the Portuguese law, it´s also very dangerous.