Uluru Rescue

Submitted: Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 13:00
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Three 22-year-old Australian men were stuck for 16 hours in a steep-walled crevice after they wandered off the path while climbing the rock about midday on Monday.

ABC News Report here.
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Allan

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Reply By: TomH - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 14:23

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 14:23
Unfortunately they wont have to pay for the rescue. Should be made to for their stupidity.

A couple in NZ was told not to go tramping in Fiordland due to the weather. They did go anyway and he fell over a bank and died. She got stuck in a hut for a month before being rescued. Before she left the country she made a substantial donation to SAR for their trouble and the Chopper trip.

These guys should be encouraged to do the same
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Follow Up By: Baz - The Landy - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 16:46

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 16:46
A couple of points, the report doesn’t indicate how they ended up off-track, just that they did, so we can’t be sure it was through stupidity, bad luck, or a bit of both.

And who gets to decide what was stupid, you would need to know something about the experience of those involved to make that sort of pronouncement, surely.

But here is the thing, they were stuck and needed a rescue regardless…

A similar call goes out almost every time there is a rescue that makes the press – it is an easy target.

However, there are unintended consequences that should be considered before we start charging people for rescues no matter how they come to be in a predicament that requires a rescue.

Among these will be people delaying a request for help for fear of getting a bill at the end of the rescue, potentially turning non-life threatening situations into life-threatening ones through this delay. This puts more pressure on rescue agencies and the delay might be the difference between a rescue and a recovery job…

The “community wallet” supports lots of people in many different ways, providing a rescue service for those needing it is one of those!

And who knows, perhaps those involved in this incident may make a donation to show their appreciation, but let’s not make it a requirement – none of us know when we might be judged to have “done something stupid”…

My opinion, and I’ll accept it isn’t a view held by all…

Cheers, Baz – The Landy
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 16:57

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 16:57
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Yes, well I agree with that viewpoint Baz.

Where could the line be drawn in the grey zone between foolishness and unfortunate happenings? If I were bitten by a snake and required assistance could it be alleged that I was careless in stepping on the damn thing? Or if I had a heart attack and required evacuation, could it be argued that I had not taken sufficient care with my health?

It is one of the advantages of living in Australia that we have such great care for our residents..... and visitors.
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Follow Up By: TomH - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:12

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:12
The reports on the news this morning said they were told NOT to go for whatever reason and they did and apparently chose to try a different route to come down.
Had they stayed on the well worn route where they should have it wouldnt have happened.
After being a tourist guide in a previous life and having had to pull idiots out of pools after they walked past a no entry sign and fell over a waterfall I have little sympathy for people who choose to fly in the face of good advice and put others at risk trying to rescue them. Wasnt fun trying to get them out with joined horse packing straps as others had taken our ropes to go climbing
The Swedish? girl in NZ accepted that they were authors of their own misfortune and was thankful and happy to contribute.
I fully realise accidents happen and people need help for something not of their making and that is fine. Its the irresposible few who spoil it for the genuine ones.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:23

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:23
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Yes Tom, it is onerous to have to tolerate the irresponsibles but we can't just leave them to their own outcome and it is futile to expect them to pay the enormous costs of a rescue. So what procedure do you propose?
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Follow Up By: TomH - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:33

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 17:33
Case by case basis afterwards would be a start.

The Taiwanese guy who fell last year ended up with a medical bill of nearly $100,000 because he had no insurance.

Unfortunately you cant legislate for stupidity.

In this case it seems they chose to deviate into a restricted area to come down which shows the level of intelligence and they were almost near the bottom and could go neither down or back up which made it harder to get them out.
Presumably the restricted areas are marked I dont know I chose not to climb it.

But looking on several social media sites and in the press the general opinion is they were idiots.
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Follow Up By: Ron A - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 18:02

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 18:02
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Follow Up By: Baz - The Landy - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 20:10

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 20:10
Tom

There is a very good reason you can’t legislate for “Stupidity”, in fact I’ll venture there are two reasons.

Firstly, we’d never agree on what we actually mean by stupidity…despite the Oxford dictionary defining what we think it is!

Secondly, and possibly more importantly, is we would all end up getting caught out by our own stupid law at some point of time!

Our legislators' (politicians) might be dumb, but they aren't that stupid...(but hey - let's not get distracted with that discussion).

Out of interest, New Zealand has an accident compensation scheme that anyone, including foreign visitors can access. That will include the Czech tourist (not Swedish) that I believe you referred to.

And like Australia, authorities in New Zealand don’t expect people to pay for a rescue, as similar to many other rescue agencies around the world they want people to ask for help if they are in a distress situation and to do so earlier, rather than later – regardless of how the incident occurred, be it stupidity or bad luck.

So whilst the Czech tourist has perhaps elected to contribute to the costs, I don’t believe she has been asked to.

Police and the New Zealand Department of Conservation (DoC) people have in fact praised the lady for not trying to get out on her own.

Just worth highlighting that Australia is not alone in the approach it takes.

Mind you, I'm not trying to convince you or anyone on this, everyone is entitled to a view and opinion, I just say, step back and look at the potential for unintended consequences of sending people "rescue bills"...



Cheers, Baz – The Landy
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Follow Up By: Member - John and Val - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:57

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:57
I concur with Baz's comments.

Something that hasn't come up in this discussion is the fact that the rescuers were volunteers. These people contribute their time and energy in training and assisting in difficult and dangerous circumstances. How many of us would have left this rescue for daylight rather than clambering over the rock relying on a head torch?

Let's be grateful that we have such people in this country, rather than concentrating on the costs and who's going to pay. It would be a nice gesture (but little more) if these three fellows made a financial contribution towards the cost of their rescue. Far better if they contributed by becoming active in a volunteer organisation, be it rescue, fire, whatever.

John
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 09:58

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 09:58
A friend of mine injured himself in the High Country, cost him $8000 for the rescue helicopter!

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Follow Up By: garrycol - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 11:14

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 11:14
But there would have been a similar cost if tt was a road accident in an urban area and it was deemed a helo was needed.

In most states we have to pay for ambulance services irrespective the circumstances and type of ambulance (we dont have to pay for police and fire services but for some reason we pay for ambulance) so that is why, that as a minimum, ambulance insurance cover is maintained.
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Follow Up By: Member - Paul B (WA) - Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 22:07

Friday, Sep 23, 2016 at 22:07
"And there but for the grace of God go I," TomH.

As my old dad used to say, be very careful when pointing the finger at someone else as there's always three pointing back at you.

I was once very critical of the money it cost rescuing people undertaking seemingly foolhardy voyages across oceans in small(-ish) boats, until they one day I needed rescuing on a totally landlocked inlet, despite my vast experience, having sailed thousands of sea miles including several Sydney to Hobart races and across oceans.

I simply didn't act with due care and was amazed that I of all people needed rescuing. It was a great and timely lesson in humility.

I sincerely hope you never get similarly caught out.
Paul B Kalgoorlie

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Reply By: Member - Robert1660 - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 20:55

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 20:55
Of course you are requested not to climb Uluru. I do appreciate that some people visit with the intention of climbing, however although some of the stated restrictions around Uluru are a little extreme, we do need to respect the indigenous request not to climb. We respect our churches so we need to respect "indigenous churches". I can appreciate that this view is controversial and much needs to be done on both sides, however a start might be to respect their wishes with respect to Uluru.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 21:14

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 21:14
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Pleeeze, Oh PLEEEEEZE.

Let's not start on that one again!
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Follow Up By: Member - Robert1660 - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 21:27

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 21:27
I told you it would be controversial!!!!!
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 22:23

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 22:23
And not relevant to this thread.
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Follow Up By: Member - Robert1660 - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 22:41

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 22:41
Well, if people didn't climb then this entire thread would not even exist.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 23:21

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2016 at 23:21
"Pleeeze, Oh PLEEEEEZE.

Let's not start on that one again!"

Just to be sure I read your comment twice, what frightens you about this discussion Allan?

I thought you were better than that, what is wrong with asking people to respect other people and their beliefs?

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Follow Up By: Genny - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 05:40

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 05:40
Bit of a slippery slope respecting other people's beliefs. It's one thing to "respect" by being tolerant of somebodies beliefs, and another entirely for that "respect" to influence or limit how you pursue happiness.

Out of "respect", you can't :-
climb Ayers Rock
wear shorts
wear a bikini
work on the Sabbath (Friday, Saturday and Sunday "respecting" everyone)
cut the hair on your temples
be circumcised
not be circumcised
be tattooed
receive a blood transfusion
eat a ham sandwich
eat prawns
hold your wife's hand in public
eat beef
drink alcohol

I do respect other peoples beliefs. Their beliefs influence how they live their lives. Their beliefs shouldn't influence how I live mine. nor mine influence theirs (or should it?).

Then there's the pesky problem of child brides, female genital mutilation .......
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 06:19

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 06:19
I've lost count of the number of churches I've viewed and explored over the years. Even climbed all the way to the top of the steeples like the famous one in Cologne Germany. The thing is, I'm not religious in the slightest. I find it interesting to see the lengths people will go to in support of often completely ridiculous and conflicting ideas, whether it be Tha Vatican, Uluru or the Temple at Delphi. They all want your money as a general rule, and they all give you a set of things you can and cannot do. At Uluru, you cannot take pictures at certain spots.....ok, you aren't allowed. You are allowed to climb but they'd rather you didn't........ok, you are allowed to climb. If it bugs them that much they would say you aren't allowed, full stop, end of story. Like most religions, they don't want minor irritations causing a dent in their income because surveys have shown that a good percentage of visitors only go for the climb. It's rare that any spirit, juju mumbo jumbo will be allowed to impact on revenue. It's about the only thing a lot of religions have in common.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:40

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:40
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Hi Steve,

My plea is because the argument of 'climbing Uluru or not climbing' has been done to death on this forum, goes on forever, and is divisive and inconclusive.
Then it branches into the dispute of calling it "Uluru" or "Ayers Rock".

And it has already got under way!
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:50

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 07:50
Well this has got off track...bit like the dolts that needed rescuing. There is no ban on climbing Ayres Rock so that puts paid to that argument.
What has religion got to do with this thread? Biggest con job in the world is religious organisations paying no tax, amassing billions, abusing followers and all dropping to their knees for some invisible thing!!

State emergaency teams are there to help when needed. How to stop idiots being idiots is a hard one. Naturally if push came to shove it would be lawyers making a lot of money.
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Follow Up By: TomH - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 08:47

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 08:47
Leaving all the irrelevant bits aside the crux of the matter is that they chose to go into a restricted area instead of doing the sensible thing and going down the normal track.
Had they done what everyone else does we wouldnt be writing this

Yes NZ does have ACC but not all foreigners are covered and lots have left the country owing considerable amounts.
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Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 09:16

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 09:16
No one knows why they left the marked trail going up, and I'm not sure exactly what that looks like as I haven't climbed it, did the walk around instead even though it was open to climb.
Would have loved to do it, but chose not to and really enjoyed to perimeter rock base walk.

We also don't know if it was in fact closed to climbers at the time, only what I read here and there that the local aboriginals asked them not to climb.
I've never heard of this happening face to face though, and that would put incredible pressure on people that actually would like to climb it, I would have thought the local indigenous would not ask people directly not to climb, but leave it up to all the literature / signage to advise people of this request.

Yes, sometimes people are totally stupid / negligent in getting into situations requiring rescue, other times it is just bad luck, but our emergency services are all there ready to go 24/365.
Personally feel the occasional 'stupidity' rescue can be used as a real time training exercise, as all the practice scenarios done can never replicate a proper search and rescue.
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Follow Up By: Baz - The Landy - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 10:11

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 10:11
Hi Tom

I’m not interested in going head-to-head here and respect your view on whether people should pay for a rescue or not, a view that I don’t agree with. And I have dealt with that earlier…

However, it is important in these discussions that information provided is at least factual, as being factual goes to the whole heart of this thread – we only know what people are surmising happened, and often this is embellished with one’s view and opinion as populated in the social media “kangaroo court”, rather than dealing in the actual facts.

I'm not sure what information you have on the ACC, but here are some facts...

The ACC in New Zealand covers all New Zealanders and visitors, no matter what you were doing, how the injury happened, and even if the person has done something that contributed to the injury.

For visitors to New Zealand, the scheme assists with the treatment costs whilst you are in New Zealand. I’ll leave it for those with a greater interest to review the ACC website, it is clearly spelt out there.

Happy to hear if it is any different than what is essentially from "the horse's mouth"...so to speak!


Cheers, Baz
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Follow Up By: TomH - Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 10:57

Wednesday, Sep 21, 2016 at 10:57
Just to be absolutely clear It does NOT say everyone IS covered From this page
http://www.acc.co.nz/making-a-claim/am-i-covered/ECI0002#P73_5191

It says this "QUOTE"
What if I am a visitor to New Zealand?
If you’re injured during your visit to New Zealand, we may be able to help with the cost of treatment and support you need while you’re here
Do I qualify?
ACC support may be available to you as a visitor if you are: etc
and as ACC does not pay for everything this is partly what I was referring to.
I incorrectly attributed it to include accident which as said MAY be paid for by ACC
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/68424897/foreigners-cost-dhbs-millions-in-healthcare
Likewise the same has occured here
http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/the-accidental-tourists-taking-up-our-hospital-beds/story-e6freuy9-1226295555404
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Reply By: Member - Rich - Wednesday, Sep 28, 2016 at 13:55

Wednesday, Sep 28, 2016 at 13:55
May be they should be fined for going into a restricted section
Nothing about recovery.
The money could go to Uluru or the recovery people.
Rich
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