Burčák-Drunk Revellers Engage Police in Vineyard Hide and Seek

A burčák march in South Moravia got a little out of hand this past weekend with intoxicated participants getting lost among the vines

Elizabeth Zahradnicek-Haas

Written by Elizabeth Zahradnicek-Haas Published on 10.10.2016 15:29:20 (updated on 10.10.2016) Reading time: 1 minute

A burčák march (burčákový pochod) is a Moravian tradition that involves a scenic walk through the vineyards, cellars, and stalls selling the potent young wine that is a seasonal delight of the region.

It does not, however, typically involve injuries or the need for medical assistance. But at this year’s march in the South Moravian village of Mutěnice on Saturday, eight severely intoxicated participants were treated for injuries, reports iDnes. Problem was, police and rescuers had to find them first.

“Callers to the 155 emergency line failed to describe the place from which they were calling because they were under the influence of alcohol or because it was difficult to navigate between the vineyards, where the terrain there is similar everywhere,” rescuers who were on the scene told the publication.

Some 4,000 people participated in the march but the village, which organizes the annual event, failed to notify emergency medical services that it was taking place. Organizers also implemented a new route, leaving a number of participants confused and disoriented.

Emergency callers were told by operators to install an ambulance app so that rescuers, who had no official maps of the area, could track them; in the meantime the injured were forced to stay put as police and medics searched the vineyards.

The most common accidents reported were head and leg injuries mostly caused by stumbling related to burčák-induced intoxication. Rescuers also told the publication that one “very drunk man fell unconscious.” 

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