American style rodeo weekend in central Slovakia
On July 7, the second annual Western Riding Rodeo took place in Polomka. More than 40 couples and 41 horses from around Slovakia participated in the competition. Horses and their riders showed their skills in nine different special cowboy disciplines, in which speed, obedience, beauty, and hard work were decisive factors for victory.
Hundreds of spectators visited the event. The competitions that attracted the most spectators were lasso throwing, as well as peanning, where riders separate marked cattle from others in a herd.
German tourists lost in High Tatras
On July 5, a 30 year-old Czech tourist was injured on a hike, slipping down about six metres from difficult terrain leading to the Malé Rysy peak.
He was saved by the Tatras' helicopter rescue team, but as soon as the rescue was completed the helicopter had to rush to help a family of Germans who got into trouble at Pyšný peak.
The father of the family took his wife and 12 year-old daughter to an area where he had been a frequent visitor 20 years ago. Originally he had wanted to climb to the Lomnický peak, but had lost his way. Not realising his mistake, he eventually ended up on Pyšný instead. When the helicopter team arrived the Germans were freezing and exhausted.
Since January 2001, the helicopter rescue team has carried out 89 rescue missions.
Wild pigs raid farm fields
Herds of wild pigs in the Považského Inovec and Strážovské vrchy forests have made night-time raids on local fields, devastating crops. Affected farmers said they were expecting local hunters to solve the problem soon by shooting the wild animals.
"[The pigs] have damaged our corn fields and ravaged our meadows," complained František Trúnek, from a farm in Dolná Súča. Wild pigs have also caused losses to the nearby Drietoma farm.
Farmers and hunters have tried to deal with the problem by spreading a special type of grain, Stopkanec (Stopboar) to prevent the pigs from entering the fields. The granules were spread around the fields, and their smell should have discouraged pigs from crossing onto farm lands.
The problem, however, has persisted, and the farmers have agreed with the hunters that the latter would run regular night watches to either scare away the pigs or shoot them.
Man walks away from refugee van
Košice border police discovered 10 illegal migrants from India in a Peugeot mini-van July 9, and also arrested a 26 year-old driver from Kromoľa. However, the driver was set free after telling police that he was unaware there were refugees in the back of the van.
Had he been detained and charged with smuggling illegal immigrants, he would have faced a three-year jail sentence. He told police that he had borrowed the mini-van from a 23 year-old from the village of Michalovce, who allegedly borrowed it from another 35 year-old man.
The police investigation continues.
Hungarian woman jumps from moving train
A 37 year-old Hungarian woman jumped from an express train near Bratislava July 11. She was en route to Hungary with her husband and died the same day as a result of her injuries.
The husband later said that during the journey his wife told him that if they went to Hungary she would jump from the train. According to him, the woman was alone in the compartment at the time of the event, while he was standing outside in the aisle of a train carriage. The woman's motive for jumping was not clear, and the police have begun an investigation.
Compiled by Martina Pisárová from SITA and press reports
16. Jul 2001 at 0:00