Interview date: Aug 14, 2023
Andreas Gmür (aka Pura Vida Magic Andy), a Swiss artist and entrepreneur living in Nosara since December 2021 experienced nothing short of a moment of divine intervention when Eric from Bomberos de Nosara literally saved his life!
Andy was touring the Nosara countryside on his four-wheeler on July 5th, 2023. As he was coming down a steep hill in the mountains towards Esperanza, he found himself on a road he was not familiar with. Without realizing it, he and his four-wheeler came to an abrupt curve in the road, and the unthinkable happened.
Andy lost control of the four-wheeler and toppled over, sliding down the steep and rocky road on his back. What’s worse, as he slid down, he also saw the four-wheeler rolling toward him. Everything was in slow motion, and he was horrified when the four-wheeler eventually landed on him, pinning his right foot to the side of the mountain. After 10 or 15 minutes of calling for help in agonizing lower back pain, he decided to call Bomberos de Nosara - a trusted source with a great reputation for helping people in situations just like this, but the story doesn’t stop there!
As Andy waited in agony, a local who was in the area and had heard his cries for help appeared and helped Andy crawl out from underneath the four-wheeler. As is standard in a situation like this for any local, the Tico called the Cruz Roja - Costa Rica’s arm of the Red Cross - and an ambulance was dispatched to help. The Cruz Roja ambulance showed up at the same time as Eric from the Bomberos, and this is where it gets truly sensational.
With all the best intentions, the Cruz Roja crew attempted to load Andy into their ambulance with the aim of driving him to the hospital in Nicoya, some two hours down the bumpy roads. In the middle of this process, however, Andy and his would-be rescuers from the Cruz Roja - along with their ambulance - began to slide further down the hill. Realizing this was not going to work, Eric decided to take action. By Andy’s account, Eric grabbed ahold of him, carried him over his shoulder/on his back to the Bomberos vehicle, and drove him down the road to a private clinic in Nosara.
At this clinic, the doctor on duty quickly diagnosed Andy’s situation as critical and clarified that he would need to be airlifted to San José immediately for the proper care. After the flight was arranged, Andy arrived at the CIMA Hospital in San Rafael de Escazú, where the surgeon took over. It turns out there was a very short window of opportunity due to the severely fractured hip bone and the risk of it dying off. The surgeon explained the fractured bone could have definitely died off and could have led to much worse outcomes.
In Andy’s words,
“Eric started a domino effect for the best possible outcome for me, considering the options available, and he guided me into the best possible care. I was really appreciative of Eric`s highly professional decision making in such a dramatic situation. He followed up with me since the accident several times to ask how I was doing - he was very personal and compassionate. I truly felt blessed on multiple levels: that I survived this horrible accident, that I did not get paralyzed and that Eric was there to rescue me.”