'Decomposing smell': Austrian police called due to smelly shoes

Amanda Previdelli
Amanda Previdelli - [email protected]
'Decomposing smell': Austrian police called due to smelly shoes
Austrian Police face tougher limits as to when they can ask you for ID than police in many other countries do. Photo: ALEX HALADA / AFP

Austria's police department said they were called to an apartment complex in Vienna after a person was concerned about a "smell of decomposition".


This week, the Viennese police department started a weekly 'series' of sharing interesting stories on

Es ist #Missverständnismittwoch & wir wollen euch mit einer neuen Serie, über Kuriositäten aus unserem Polizeialltag berichten.
Einige Einsätze entpuppen sich dann doch anders, als anfangs angenommen.
Achtung: Scheue nie den Notruf zu wählen. Im Zweifelsfall ist es ein Notfall!

— POLIZEI WIEN (@LPDWien) July 6, 2022 ">their social media accounts. 

Calling the series 'Misunderstanding Wednesday' (Missverständnismittwoch), the very first post is about a call they received to an apartment complex after a concerned citizen complained to emergency services about a "smell of decomposition in the staircase".

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The alleged corpse, it turns out, was just the neighbour's smelly shoes which were left in the building corridor, in front of their apartment.

The police didn't say when exactly the incident took place.

"When our colleagues are called because of the 'smell of decomposition in the staircase'... and notice that the stunk is from the neighbour's shoes which were left in front of the apartment door", the official Twitter account of the Vienna police department reads.


'When in doubt it is an emergency'

The authorities were light-hearted about the misunderstanding, even sharing a "meme-like" picture on their social media accounts, saying "some missions turn out to be different than initially assumed".

READ ALSO: Austrian police warn public about new ‘fake cops’ scam

However, they reiterated that the misunderstandings should not deter people from calling 133, the emergency police number. They added that in case of emergencies and even if you are not sure, the authorities should be called and they will assist you.

"Note: in case of doubt, it is an emergency", the Vienna police department says. "Never be afraid to dial the emergency number."



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