Major fire brigade operation in Bonn 29-year-old crossed the Rhine with inflatable rubber flamingo – twice

Because he crossed the Rhine with an inflatable floating toy in the shape of a flamingo, a 29-year-old man was responsible for a major call-out on Monday. He is said to have even made the "trip" from Beuel to the Nordbrücke twice.

 Symbolic photograph. Photo: Sebastian Kahnert

Symbolic photograph. Photo: Sebastian Kahnert

Foto: Sebastian Kahnert

The "captain" of a rubber flamingo crossed the Rhine twice on Monday, The 29-year-old man from Bonn had triggered a major operation by the fire department, police and DLRG on Monday evening by crossing the Rhine with an inflatable rubber toy. The man now told WDR radio that he had even crossed the Rhine twice that day with his flamingo. He started in Bonn-Beuel and landed again at about the same level as the Nordbrücke. On his trip across the Rhine, he also had a bicycle with him.

The 29-year-old had covered about 1.3 kilometres on the Rhine, a police spokesman said on Tuesday. "This can only be considered extremely dangerous." The young man is not under investigation, however, presumably he had not done anything illegal. "Unless there are other ships which he has obstructed."

Passers-by thought the young man was unconscious on his inflatable toy on Monday night and called 911. In fact, the man had only relaxed, as he told the fire department.

Swimming in the Rhine is considered life-threatening because of the strong current of the river and the suction effect that cargo ships can cause. With a "non-manoeuvrable" rubber dinghy, a trip on the Rhine is very dangerous too, a fire department spokesman stressed.

Original text: GA Bonn, dpa. Translation: Mareike Graepel

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