Dacia is an official partner of mountain rescue organisations in Slovenia, Croatia and Serbia, which receive a copy of the Dacia Duster SUV every year to transport their equipment, rescue dogs and rescued people in the wild areas, which are difficult to reach with standard vehicles. The mountain rescuers from three mountain rescue associations in Eastern Europe, the Slovenian, Croatian and Serbian ones, receive help from Dacia every year, within the partnerships they have together.
"We have been using Dacia Duster for 8 years. We already have about 20 cars in our fleet. They are really practical vehicles because they can be driven on urban roads and forest roads ", says Darko, who has 25 years of activity in the mountain rescue association. The Dacia Duster cars used by the mountain rescue associations from the three countries were affixed with the inscription "Dacia, proud sponsor of the mountain rescuers". Used as fast reaction machines, they quickly get to where help is needed. First aid crews usually consist of 3 people, have intervention equipment on board and sometimes a rescue dog. All Dacia Duster SUVs have all-wheel drive, high ground clearance, being perfect for interventions in the forest or in difficult to reach locations.
Volunteers from mountain rescue associations in the three countries are all experts in mountaineering, climbing, caving or diving and are physically prepared to intervene whenever lost tourists have problems. In Slovenia, in 2020, the 430 mountain rescue volunteers received 485 calls for intervention, a third of which were from lost or stranded people.
In Serbia, the 500 rescuers, half of whom are reserves, received about 1,500 calls. Most were people injured on skis. At least one Dacia Duster has been used every day for interventions in the last eight years, from towing equipment to transporting rescued people. There has never been a case in which a victim has been lost. In 2014, during the floods, cars were used to help people affected by the waters, some of which were stuck in the mud. Duster rescue operations were also carried out in the snow or areas with strong winds in Croatia, the 700 volunteers all add up to 600,000 days each year, with around 7,000 calls a year. From floods to earthquakes, storms and avalanches, natural disasters accounted for only 15% of the interventions of these rescuers.
The most recent is the December 2020 earthquake, which destroyed the Croatian city of Petrinja. The Croatian mountain rescuers intervened in 45 minutes with the crews embarked in Dacia Duster, being the first teams to arrive at the site of the disaster. The speed with which they acted helped save a woman buried alive under the rubble.