TOO MANY FATALITIES
- THREE fatalities within a couple of weeks, involving two experienced
riders and apparently a new rider. Lofting or dragging and severe head
injuries occurred in each case. No helmets are known to have been in use at
this time in any of these three accidents. Details are still coming in but
they both appear to have been avoidable accidents.
People are just not taking potential hazards associated with kiteboarding
seriously enough to take appropriate precautions.
Things may grow worse before they improve, based on the experience of last
year. Reviewing information from the KSI in 2002:
June - Two fatalities
Sept. - One fatality
Oct. - One fatality
Nov. - Five fatalities
Desperation over so many avoidable accidents last November resulted in the
preparation and translation of "Ten Ideas For Safer Kiteboarding" located
IF, these guidelines had been adhered to it is likely that many of these
fatalities may have never happened. Add to that the many dozens of serious,
non-fatal avoidable accidents many involving experienced riders that may
have never happened IF these guidelines had been followed.
Then there are the accidents and fatalities that have yet to occur. Those
are the ones that we might cause to NEVER occur by the choices we make.
* In kiteboarding and in life for that matter, bad things can happen. They
don't always happen to the "other guy."
* Experience and skill are sometimes NOT much of a deterent to harm, unless
suitable caution is practiced.
These are two of the most significant facts that are given here. You or
someone you know could well be the next victim of a serious accident.,
largely determined by the care you choose to practice.
Lack of awareness of hazards or worse denial of their significance can
injure and kill. This has happened in the past and will continue to happen.
So, take steps to avoid an AVOIDABLE accident or not, the choice is yours.
People often need to see and hear about enough serious accidents to motivate
them to take the hazard seriously and to take steps to avoid them. Are we
Kiteboarding is an extreme sport and will likely always have the potential
to be dangerous. The key is to reduce the number of avoidable accidents. It
is up to you to decide by the actions you choose to take, if any.
Some ideas on how to avoid kiteboarding accidents and complaints appear in
the "Ten Ideas For Safer Kiteboarding" and even more appear in the "Safe
Kiteboarding Guidelines." These documents were derived from actual accident
analysis. Choose to be aware and try to avoid obvious hazards or not. The
hazards are real and will effect some among us regardless of our views on
whether they are a real threat or not. Do your loved ones a favor and think
November is approaching along with what good and ill that it may bring. Our
choices in how we ride will have a strong role in how things work out this
fall. Safety devices in kiteboarding may only help to avoid serious
accidents. In these early days it is essential to also use adequate
knowledge and judgment to properly insure safer riding. Time to decide, with
appropriate action our casualty rate could be less than last year, it is up
to us. We should be doing more to improve the accident experience in this
Safe Kiteboarding Guidelines
Ten Ideas For Safer Kiteboarding
transcribed by: Rick Iossi
Promote "Ride Hard & Safer, Ten Ideas..." PRESERVE YOUR ACCESS TO RIDE
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