Exploding Cows in the Alps

Calvin Kim
by Calvin Kim
Have you ever toured the Alps? If so, have you ever been hit by pieces of exploded dead cow meat? No? Well then, time is running out!

Conversely, if the only thing that's been holding you back from touring the Alps is your fear of exploding cows, you're in luck.

Read on to find out why...

Yes, yes, we realize this has absolutely nothing to do with motorcycles. Tough. Read and laugh. You do have a sense of humor, don't you?

VIENNA (Reuters) - The Austrian province of Vorarlberg will ban thepractice of blowing up dead cows with explosives on its picture-postcard Alpine meadows, state television ORF said on Thursday.

The small, mountainous province nestling between Liechtenstein,Switzerland and Germany lives off tourism, and authorities were worried tourists might be put off by exploding cadavers and possible contamination of ground water.

About 20 head of cattle die on Vorarlberg's Alpine pastures each year -- either struck by lightning or falling down precipices. Because of the rugged terrain, helicopters usually have to be called in to remove the remains.

Given that hiring a helicopter costs about 15,000 schillings ($956) atrip, some farmers have opted to blow up their dead animals at a cost of 500 schillings ($32) with the help of demolition experts, who placeexplosives inside the cadavers.

The state of Vorarlberg takes on up to 80 percent of the transport costs, but locals are calling for 100 percent cover to stamp out the grisly practice, ORF said.

"I will put a stop to these blasts. I never even knew they were takingplace," said Erich Schwaerzler, a member of local parliament in charge of environmental and agricultural issues.

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Calvin Kim
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