Earlier on this morning local newspaper, JM, confirmed that a group of German tourists had become lost in the mountainous area near Bica da Cana.
It is not known how long they had been missing, nor under what circumstances the incident occurred. However, information provided by the emergency services confirmed that they had been found at the Bica da Cana viewpoint, both showing signs of hypothermia.
This evening, further details were released. It would appear that the two German women were walking between Encumeada and Bica da Cana when they lost touch with each other, meaning that both spent a night out in the open.
A distress call was received last night and search and rescue teams were immediately sent to the area, comprising of four members of the Forestry Police, who received additional support from officers of the Ribeira Brava Fire Brigade, and the chief of the Institute for Forests and Nature Conservation (IFCN).
It is not known if the women were then taken to hospital for treatment.
With the number of accidents and occurrences that have happened recently, I would like to remind everyone that although Madeira is ‘safe to discover,’ it is not a playground, and that levada’s and mountain trails need to be respected. If you are going out walking, especially at the moment, make sure that you take a torch, charged mobile phone, additional warm clothing, first aid kit and energy bars and water. And please, obey any safety notices or detours, because it is not just your safety at stake, but the safety of our search and rescue teams.