Message from the Bureau of the European Speleological Federation FSE on the Coronavirus COVID-19 crisis

To all national caving organisations, delegates and cavers.

Please share this message to the clubs and cavers.

Within just a short time daily life in most countries of the world has radically changed as a result of the outbreak of the Coronavirus COVID-19. Cafés, shops and schools are closed, flights, holidays and activities of all sorts including events are cancelled or prohibited and some borders are closed for traffic. Close contacts with people must be significantly reduced or avoided and, in some countries, communities are placed in quarantine. All this to crack down on the spread of the coronavirus and in order to maintain the quality of our healthcare. These measures from various countries have an impact on the practise of caving/speleology in any form, no matter the size of caving parties.

Speleological Federations of various countries such as Austria, Belgium, France, Italy and Spain urge their members not to undertake any form of caving activities, including climbing, canyoning or diving and to stay at home. Not only to avoid contacts between people, but also to reduce the likelihood rescues, which will be an additional burden on already overloaded public and health services. Moreover, in various countries sport and recreational activities are prohibited by law for the weeks to come.

The Bureau of the European Speleological Federation FSE therefore strongly recommends cavers to reconsider their caving activities and events and keep an eye on the media because the situation changes every day. What is possible today will be prohibited tomorrow. Please respect the measures taken by every individual country.

The FSE Bureau hopes all cavers and caving organisations will have the fortitude to hold out during this difficult period to come and we hope to see you all safe and sound after this crisis. Make responsible judgments and act with common sense. This is not only for yourself but especially for the people around you.

Best wishes,
FSE Bureau members