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Sarah Outen in a typhoon - Comments

Corylus's Avatar Comment 1 by Corylus

Looks like the coastguards have picked her up. Good news.

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 09:56:47 UTC | #946295

God fearing Atheist's Avatar Comment 2 by God fearing Atheist

That nearly fooled me - Indian ocean to Japan in 3 years? - circumnavigation of globe? Oh, different trip! She has just cycled across Eurasia from UK to Japan and is now heading East across the Pacific, or rather, is now back in Japan.

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 11:01:52 UTC | #946304

Sample's Avatar Comment 3 by Sample

There's a fellow rower awaiting rescue as well. Angry, confused, seas give me nightmares. Glad she's ok but her mind will be adrift for quite some time I suspect.

Mike

http://worldnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/08/12119448-solo-brit-rower-rescued-after-merciless-pacific-storm-another-waits-for-help?lite

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 14:15:36 UTC | #946333

Schrodinger's Cat's Avatar Comment 4 by Schrodinger's Cat

I understand why people like Sarah Outen make those trips. Those sort of wild moments have a sense of freedom about them that simply cannot be experienced any other way....compared with which 'god' is a diminutive little being who lives in some pokey little parish church.

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 15:25:53 UTC | #946347

Mark Ribbands's Avatar Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands


Hmm…

Whilst I applaud the reckless courage of people who, perhaps unnecessarily, put themselves in such a position – be it lone yachtsmen/women, blokes in bathtubs rowing the Atlantic, stratospheric balloonists, or, my personal favourite, aficionados of extreme ironing – never forget the equal courage of the crews who then need to fly SAR aircraft in, by definition, spectacularly dangerous meteorological conditions to rescue them.

I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 18:15:01 UTC | #946381

Richard Dawkins's Avatar Comment 6 by Richard Dawkins

Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands :

Hmm…

Whilst I applaud the reckless courage of people who, perhaps unnecessarily, put themselves in such a position – be it lone yachtsmen/women, blokes in bathtubs rowing the Atlantic, stratospheric balloonists, or, my personal favourite, aficionados of extreme ironing – never forget the equal courage of the crews who then need to fly SAR aircraft in, by definition, spectacularly dangerous meteorological conditions to rescue them.

I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

Yes, I see exactly what you mean. And in many cases they go into it recklessly, without adequate preparation and inadequately equipped, which could justly arouse the ire of the rescue services. I don't think Sarah Outen could be accused of that. She has one hugely successful crossing to her credit, which was extremely well prepared. And also well prepared was the present voyage, which was well on its way to success before the typhoon struck. I think a typhoon is something nobody could reasonably be expected to budget for.

Richard

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 19:45:07 UTC | #946399

Sample's Avatar Comment 7 by Sample

is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts? Mark Ribbands

Certainly not. While every act of rescue entails risk, guidelines to abort recovery missions have discretionary aspects. There is an ongoing debate in Alaska whether hikers in national parks should be financially liable when they invariably get stranded and need rescue.

Three quick scenarios:

  1. Professional mountain climber tackling North America's highest peak acquired altitude sickness and needs help.

  2. Elderly, or not so elderly, tourist has a mild stroke on a trail and isn't noticed missing until after dark when canine units and night-vision teams are required to start a search.

  3. A TV film crew covering a commercial fishing vessel 100 miles offshore in heavy seas loses all steering control and requires J-Hawk helicopters to be scrambled (I don't know if scramble is the right term for helos, maybe just fixed wings. :-j ).

I'm all for a case-by-case basis on who should pay the bill for recreational endeavors when there are no specific financial warnings posted.

Mike

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 20:55:23 UTC | #946419

InYourFaceNewYorker's Avatar Comment 8 by InYourFaceNewYorker

And I bet she's not going on about how it's her faith in Jebus that is making her survive it!

Comment 6 by Richard Dawkins :

Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands :

Hmm…

Whilst I applaud the reckless courage of people who, perhaps unnecessarily, put themselves in such a position – be it lone yachtsmen/women, blokes in bathtubs rowing the Atlantic, stratospheric balloonists, or, my personal favourite, aficionados of extreme ironing – never forget the equal courage of the crews who then need to fly SAR aircraft in, by definition, spectacularly dangerous meteorological conditions to rescue them.

I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

Yes, I see exactly what you mean. And in many cases they go into it recklessly, without adequate preparation and inadequately equipped, which could justly arouse the ire of the rescue services. I don't think Sarah Outen could be accused of that. She has one hugely successful crossing to her credit, which was extremely well prepared. And also well prepared was the present voyage, which was well on its way to success before the typhoon struck. I think a typhoon is something nobody could reasonably be expected to budget for.

Richard

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 22:14:15 UTC | #946442

SomersetJohn's Avatar Comment 9 by SomersetJohn

While there is a discussion to be had on whether adventurers put others in danger, or should be held financially accountable for their rescues, I cannot but feel that the world would be a much poorer place without such heroes and role models.

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 22:20:43 UTC | #946443

Mark Ribbands's Avatar Comment 10 by Mark Ribbands

Comment 6 by Richard Dawkins Yes, I see exactly what you mean. And in many cases they go into it recklessly, without adequate preparation and inadequately equipped, which could justly arouse the ire of the rescue services. I don't think Sarah Outen could be accused of that. She has one hugely successful crossing to her credit, which was extremely well prepared. And also well prepared was the present voyage, which was well on its way to success before the typhoon struck. I think a typhoon is something nobody could reasonably be expected to budget for.

Richard: I absolutely was not referring to Sarah Outen specifically, since I have no knowledge of the lady, or her planning skills, and certainly defer to your superior knowledge in this case.

Mine was a generic question which I though might lead to interesting debate, that’s all.

Mind you, typhoons are not exactly a rare occurrence this time of year!

What got me thinking was how when cases like this are reported, it is often the victim who is described as the ‘hero’ (I detest that word) when it was they who wanted to be in the sea/snow/storm/mountain in the first place, rather than the rescue crews who very possibly, at that time, did not.

Comment 7 by Sample

I wasn’t talking about the cost of rescue operations. There’s a lot of tripe talked about this. When not deployed on live operations, rescue aircraft are not sat on the ground rusting: they’ll be engaged on training flights, frequently in reality just messing about overflying friends’ houses, running errands for the Colonel, and suchlike. There are also huge costs which accrue whether the equipment is flown or not.

I was referring to the potential reckless endangerment of somebody who might not be you.

I can argue the case both ways.

I used to fly helicopters for pleasure and profit, but nearly always on nice sunny days, when the wind was calm gusting one knot, and learned to have nothing but admiration for those who wrestle with these infernal machines during foul weather conditions.

But no one goes into the rescue services thinking it will be easy. In reality I suspect the crews relish the opportunity to deploy on a live operation, so one could argue that maidens in distress provide the crews a welcome opportunity to display their skill.

Were reckless sports, adventures, and danger of all types to be outlawed, I suppose everyone could go to work for the HSE instead, pushing paper about rather than actually doing or achieving anything, but I suspect such employment might not appeal to the kind of men who willingly fly aircraft into typhoons.

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 23:20:41 UTC | #946461

Sample's Avatar Comment 11 by Sample

I was referring to the potential reckless endangerment of somebody who might not be you. (Mark Ribbands)

Right. I addressed that. However, I do apologize for going off on a tangent about cost. Point taken.

Mike

Fri, 08 Jun 2012 23:57:11 UTC | #946470

Jumped Up Chimpanzee's Avatar Comment 12 by Jumped Up Chimpanzee

Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands

I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

While there are always a few idiots, most people who take part in extreme sports as a serious hobby take a great deal of care by way of training and preparation to reduce the chances of getting into trouble. They also insure themselves to cover rescue and medical costs.

And many of the people who work for rescue services will be extreme sports enthusiasts themselves. For example, all mountain rescue workers will, obviously, be mountaineers themselves.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 08:57:23 UTC | #946529

nick keighley's Avatar Comment 13 by nick keighley

Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands :

Hmm…Whilst I applaud the reckless courage of people who, perhaps unnecessarily, put themselves in such a position – be it lone yachtsmen/women, blokes in bathtubs rowing the Atlantic, stratospheric balloonists, or, my personal favourite, aficionados of extreme ironing – never forget the equal courage of the crews who then need to fly SAR aircraft in, by definition, spectacularly dangerous meteorological conditions to rescue them.I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

and who pays for it? Helicoptors don't run on fresh air

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 09:23:37 UTC | #946533

mmurray's Avatar Comment 14 by mmurray

Comment 13 by nick keighley :

and who pays for it? Helicoptors don't run on fresh air

If this report from 2009 is accurate who pays depends a lot on where you are.

Michael

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 10:00:01 UTC | #946540

Billy Sands's Avatar Comment 15 by Billy Sands

Mine was a generic question which I though might lead to interesting debate, that’s all.

In terms of mountain rescue teams (in Scotland anyway) the members are volunteers who climb themselves. I know a few who say they do it because they like to think there would be some who would do it for them. I was once told a story regarding the Glen coe MRT. Apparently the person they rescued most often was the leader of the Glen coe MRT.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 11:02:18 UTC | #946551

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 16 by Alan4discussion

Comment 15 by Billy Sands

In terms of mountain rescue teams (in Scotland anyway) the members are volunteers who climb themselves. I know a few who say they do it because they like to think there would be some who would do it for them. I was once told a story regarding the Glen coe MRT. Apparently the person they rescued most often was the leader of the Glen coe MRT.

Mountain rescue teams carry rescue apparatus, so in fair weather travel light and fast without much personal kit. If one of the team needs help, they radio for assistance giving an exact location.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 13:52:25 UTC | #946562

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 17 by Alan4discussion

Comment 5 by Mark Ribbands

I’m assuming something of the Devil’s advocate position, but is it acceptable for extreme sports-people to expect others to subsequently endanger themselves in rescue attempts?

You should be sceptical about sensationalised media reports.

I was once involved in a rescue where that message was widely circulated by different media - The story went, that an inexperienced group "from Ilford" had had one of it's group have an accident on a very rocky mountain, thus requiring members of an intrepid mountain rescue team to endanger themselves mounting a rescue.

Most all the details in the story were wrong!
I was a member of the group (an " A team" from a mountaineering centre not Ilford).

They got the name of the injured person wrong, the location wrong, and had overlooked the fact that there was one group not two. The original group organised it's own mountain rescue with equipment from a nearby mountain rescue post while the local mountain rescue team was busy with another rescue elsewhere!
I was in the original group and saw the accident happen - ( He slipped on wet grass and banged his hand and head on a protruding boulder). I was also one of the first group who carried the stretcher up the mountain after running to the rescue post, and coming down, returned with the injured climber as far as the ambulance.

The muddled story came from one local reporter, before being circulated in the UK national press and TV. They never corrected the mistakes.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 14:14:04 UTC | #946569

Jumped Up Chimpanzee's Avatar Comment 18 by Jumped Up Chimpanzee

Comment 13 by nick keighley

and who pays for it? Helicoptors don't run on fresh air

In some parts of the world, you have to pay yourself if you get rescued. I received a bill for four thousand Euro after being lifted off an Austrian mountain by helicopter when I injured my back. That was on top of a five hundred Euro bill for medical treatment. Fortunately my insurers paid it with no fuss.

Make sure you have good insurance!

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 16:28:13 UTC | #946577

Billy Sands's Avatar Comment 19 by Billy Sands

Mountain rescue teams carry rescue apparatus, so in fair weather travel light and fast without much personal kit. If one of the team needs help, they radio for assistance giving an exact location.

Not sure what your point is here, but the person referred to had to be rescued in non fair weather circumstances pioneering new routes.

I've also had to help push a fully loaded MacInnes stretcher as the team were short of members. It was far from easy work. They also had very heavy packs. One of which I also carried when the casualty was loaded.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 20:17:41 UTC | #946621

Schrodinger's Cat's Avatar Comment 20 by Schrodinger's Cat

Comment 15 by Billy Sands

In terms of mountain rescue teams (in Scotland anyway) the members are volunteers who climb themselves. I know a few who say they do it because they like to think there would be some who would do it for them. I was once told a story regarding the Glen coe MRT. Apparently the person they rescued most often was the leader of the Glen coe MRT.

As someone who's been up most of the mountains in England, Scotland, and Wales, I've seen many a rescue...though fortunately never had to be rescued myself. Truth is, one can come unstuck in almost any situation and its not necessarily always the danger spots where the callouts occur. I can recall on one ocassion proudly standing at Red Tarn having done Striding Edge and Swirral Edge......only to seriously twist my ankle on a dead flat surface a minute later while heading back from the mountain.

That's life. More people die falling down the stairs at home than on all the mountains of Britain every year.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 21:11:35 UTC | #946634

Mark Ribbands's Avatar Comment 21 by Mark Ribbands

Comment 20 by Schrodinger's Cat … More people die falling down the stairs at home than on all the mountains of Britain every year.

Whoops! Can’t let that one go, not here :)

I’m no statistician and don’t have the raw data, but I hypothesise that a lot more stairs are ascended each year than are mountains.

(And now I can't help wondering whether any professional mountaineers have ever died by falling down their own stairs.)

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 21:40:02 UTC | #946644

Billy Sands's Avatar Comment 22 by Billy Sands

only to seriously twist my ankle on a dead flat surface a minute later while heading back from the mountain.

Indeed. I know someone who broke his ankle in the carpark after the walk. I've also had many more injuries playing football than in the mountains.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 21:50:32 UTC | #946648

Billy Sands's Avatar Comment 23 by Billy Sands

I’m no statistician and don’t have the raw data, but I hypothesise that a lot more stairs are ascended each year than are mountains.

Perhaps more annecdotal, but we often get posters by the lifts at work stating if you climb four flights of stairs a day for a year, it is the equivalent of climbing 4 munros (mountain over 3000 ft). I've done them all (283) so I reckon I climb more mountains than stairs. For that reason, people seem surprised that I take the lift at work - reckon I've earned a couple of hundred years worth of lift use before I break even :-)

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 21:57:01 UTC | #946651

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 24 by Alan4discussion

Comment 19 by Billy Sands

Mountain rescue teams carry rescue apparatus, so in fair weather travel light and fast without much personal kit. If one of the team needs help, they radio for assistance giving an exact location.

Not sure what your point is here,

I'm talking about dumping personal kit in the vehicle, or stashing heavy packs part way up a mountain (to pick up on the way down) in order to reach a casualty quicker. This leaves team members a bit exposed if something goes wrong.

but the person referred to had to be rescued in non fair weather circumstances pioneering new routes.

Rescues are often needed for people who are pushing boundaries to the limits and then find an additional problem. (and of course for unprepared novices who don't know what they are doing.)

I've also had to help push a fully loaded MacInnes stretcher as the team were short of members. It was far from easy work. They also had very heavy packs. One of which I also carried when the casualty was loaded.

Yep! It's hard work going up steep mountainsides, and hard work coming down, especially if the ground is too rough to use the skids on the stretcher, or the injuries rule this out.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 22:10:00 UTC | #946653

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 25 by Alan4discussion

Comment 22 by Billy Sands

Indeed. I know someone who broke his ankle in the carpark after the walk. I've also had many more injuries playing football than in the mountains.

It's the unexpected one which gets you:-
I once did a standing glacade down a thousand foot snow slope, and then fell through a hidden snow-bridge into a stream at the bottom while walking away from the slope. Those with me thought this was hilarious!

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 22:20:05 UTC | #946656

Mark Ribbands's Avatar Comment 26 by Mark Ribbands

Jesus Christ!

This thread is turning into what some teenagers I know would call a c*ck-measuring competition :)

Carry on gentlemen, all most entertaining. And it confirms to me the wisdom of my lifelong avoidance of any interest or participation in any form of sport whatsoever.

Has anyone one else noticed how keen sportsmen are always about to go into hospital, are in hospital, or have just left hospital, or otherwise are moaning about some body part which has malfunctioned, usually for the umpteenth time? And cf. how the staff in ‘Health Food’ shops always appear so spectacularly unhealthy.

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 22:33:32 UTC | #946658

Billy Sands's Avatar Comment 27 by Billy Sands

This thread is turning into what some teenagers I know would call a c*ck-measuring competition :)

Not really. Compared to others I know (one having done 6 of the seven peaks, one that climbs 8c+ etc) I do not consider my exploits particularly impressive. I was just addressing your point on stairs

Has anyone one else noticed how keen sportsmen are always about to go into hospital, are in hospital, or have just left hospital, or otherwise are moaning about some body part which has malfunctioned, usually for the umpteenth time?

Nope

Sat, 09 Jun 2012 22:51:55 UTC | #946664

nurnord's Avatar Comment 28 by nurnord

Jezzus christ ! In 26 comments so far (excluding Richard's, obviously)...

As far as a quick scan can tell, NO ONE even mentioned the poem, let alone gave it the due praise it deserves !!!

Richard, that was lovely, witty and uplifting. I'm sure Sarah will appreciate it greatly !

Sun, 10 Jun 2012 03:22:15 UTC | #946686

Michael Austin's Avatar Comment 29 by Michael Austin

How does one email Richard? I see the hate mail segments, and see him mention email, but I don't see a from on the site to email Richard directly.

Sun, 10 Jun 2012 09:18:03 UTC | #946707

Jumped Up Chimpanzee's Avatar Comment 30 by Jumped Up Chimpanzee

Comment 26 by Mark Ribbands

Has anyone one else noticed how keen sportsmen are always about to go into hospital, are in hospital, or have just left hospital, or otherwise are moaning about some body part which has malfunctioned, usually for the umpteenth time? And cf. how the staff in ‘Health Food’ shops always appear so spectacularly unhealthy.

The former, yes. The latter, no. Although those heavy hessian shirts and patchwork quilt jackets can make you look a lot fatter than you really are.

Sun, 10 Jun 2012 10:00:47 UTC | #946713