A gunman has shot two police officers and the driver of an emergency rescue vehicle in central Austria before barricading himself inside a farm building with a hostage.
Interior Minister spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundboeck said a third police officer was apparently being held by the shooter.
Mr Grundboeck confirmed that three people were shot in Annaberg, about 70 miles from Vienna, but refused to say whether their injuries were fatal, saying he did not want to give the gunman information through news reports he was probably monitoring.
With a news blackout in force, no further official information was immediately available.
One report said the man was a 55-year-old poacher who fled when approached by police, then shot a member of Austria's Cobra SWAT team after his car landed in a ditch. He then shot the driver and a second police officer at a roadblock before going into hiding.