The drama happened on Monday in northwestern Spain on the Deva River during a kayak trip. Raphaël Ibañez, manager of the XV of France, and his friend Fabrice Labarrière were involved in a fatal accident
Raphaël Ibañez and his childhood friend, Fabrice Labarrière, were attempting to descend the Deva River in north-west Spain when the fatal accident occurred. The tragedy happened on Monday morning near the village of La Hermida, where the friend of the manager of the XV of France died.
The circumstances of the tragedy
The two friends’ journey began at the bridge in the village of La Hermida, where witnesses saw the two men getting ready and entering the water, explains the Spanish regional newspaper El Diario Montanès. And it was about 800 meters away when the tragedy happened. Fabrice Labarriere fell into the water due to strong currents and was unable to come to the surface. The alarm would have been given at 10 a.m. and despite the use of vital rescue equipment, the body of Raphaël Ibañez’s friend was pulled from the water at 4:30 p.m. As explained by a relative of the former player of the VX of France southwesthe “did everything to save him, but to no avail”.
XV of France: “He did everything to save him, but in vain…” Raphaël Ibanez witnessed the death of his friend while kayaking
“Fabrice fell off his boat and got stuck in the eddies under a rock and branches. He drowned. Raphaël was next to him,” a close friend of the Blues manager explained to our colleagues at the Parisian.
The important device in place
An extensive research system has been set up under the direction of the Spanish Guardia Civil, he explains Southwest. Two helicopters were at the scene of the tragedy. A crane had to be used to remove the logs and branches that had accumulated near the body, which was located around 3 p.m. According to our colleagues, a group of Civil Guard divers, together with agents specializing in mountain operations, intervened to retrieve Fabrice Labarriere’s lifeless body from the water.
Without a guide and “without the right equipment”
The Deva, which flows through this mountainous region of Spain, has been particularly turbulent in recent days, explains the medium El Comercio. Especially due to a significant snowmelt the weekend before the tragedy.
“It was reckless on their part to go there unaccompanied and without the right equipment. It’s a very difficult area, you have to be experienced,” he said Parisian the vice president of Acanta, an association that brings together tourism professionals in the region. “The sector is open from Thursday to Sunday to have emergency personnel and dressings available if necessary.”
“Very shocked”, say our colleagues, that Raphaël Ibañez did not want to speak publicly about the circumstances of this tragedy. He is still in Spain taking care of the transport of his friend’s body to France.