The Danube bike station is put to the ‘test’

The Red Cross checks in instead of guests

What the Lake Constance Cycle Path is for Germany, undoubtedly the Danube Cycle Path from Passau to Vienna is for Austria. Leader of the national cycle path ranking and a must for cycling enthusiasts! Our Danube bike station in Schärding is always well equipped to welcome numerous guests. But in these times of Corona, everything is different, it is deserted. Well, if it weren’t for the Red Cross staff…

Our station manager Sebastian Ettl and his team of nine were already out of the starting blocks for the 2020 season. Well maintained and sparkling freshly polished rental bikes, carefully packed travel documents that were labelled for each guest and a lot of personal knowledge of everything worth seeing on the route. “Yes, the tasks of the team are very diverse, and that is what makes our work extremely exciting!” says Sebastian. In addition to the personal tour briefing and preparation of all documents, the daily to-do list also includes the care of the equipment and bikes, the luggage and bike transport and any help during the stages. “Our bike station in Haid near Schärding currently houses more than 1,200 bikes, including 120 e-bikes and numerous rental bikes of our new generation, the ‘Rental Bike PLUS’. And they are all ready and waiting to take a trip to Vienna."

Corona tests via drive-in

When we learned at the end of March that the Austrian Red Cross was looking for additional locations for Corona rapid tests, it quickly became clear to us that if we couldn’t use our huge company premises in Schärding ourselves, then at least others should benefit from it. And so it goes without saying that we made our car park available to the Red Cross for Corona testing via ‘Drive-in’. The location is particularly suitable for this because of its geographical location just outside of Schärding.

Well organised and meticulously observing all hygiene measures, paramedics and trained Red Cross employees have been carrying out rapid tests in the Eurobike outdoor area for more than three weeks. With the drive-in principle, people can be tested while sitting in their own car. But how does that work exactly? When do they receive their results? And can anyone drive there?

This is how ‘drive-in’ testing works:

  1. At the entrance to the test site, the staff will determine if the test has been arranged in advance. A telephone call with the health hotline 1450 is a prerequisite for a Corona test in Austria.
  2. The necessary equipment is prepared in the test area and they are given the data of the person to be tested.
  3. The paramedics then ask the person to be tested to drive their car to the actual test site. Only there can the swab be taken.
  4. The person to be tested is then instructed to return directly to their place of residence, without any detours or stops to avoid possible infections.
  5. The sample then goes to a laboratory. An evaluation currently takes up to 48 hours and is transmitted by the health authority. While waiting for the result, people should pay particular attention to the safety regulations to avoid possible spread.

By the way: If it is not possible to drive your own car to the test site, the Red Cross’s mobile team come to the patient’s home for the test.