Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Obey the signs!!

Time for a rant. Why are people so reckless?

In mid-July, 30-year-old Lindsay Burgess from Missouri survived a fall into the rapids below Niagara Falls and had to be rescued by a jet boat. She had climbed over the barricade and ignored signs warning of danger on the slippery rocks, because she wanted to "touch beauty." Most of the news reports talk about the miracle of her survival but neglect to point out that she risked her life by walking on slippery rocks right next to the some of the wildest whirlpools in the world. Reckless and ridiculous.

Also in mid-July, 44-year-old David Potts from San Francisco fell into a blowhole in Hawaii and was sucked into the ocean, because he had to position his body between the blowhole and the ocean. I remember visiting a similar Hawaiian blowhole, where a tourist ignored the prominent signage and was cavorting around flirting with danger.

Yosemite National Park is experiencing a record number of deaths this year, with Haley LaFlamme, 26, recently falling to her death while rock climbing on a rain-soaked Half Dome. LaFlamme and several others ignored signs that warned against climbing during wet weather.

Yosemite's Vernal Fall
Also in July, three young hikers died at Vernal Fall when they climbed over the metal barricade despite posted signs and warnings from other hikers. I realize their families are experiencing horrific grief, but is it really necessary to hire a consultant to assess the safety of the waterfalls, given the fact that their children willfully put their lives at risk? An LA Times editorial asks whether visitors should sign a liability waiver when they visit Yosemite.

I'm always shocked to see people climb over guardrails to get as close as they can to wild nature. In fact, it boggles my mind to see the way people take on great personal risks in the pursuit of adventure. Mountain and rock climbing, skydiving, bungee jumping...life is too precious to squander it for the pursuit of a moment of excitement.


  1. Common sense just isn't common enough anymore. People are idiots.

  2. I know--it's really quite sad.

  3. These people who want to "touch beauty" or "touch nature" seem to forget that maybe nature (or beauty) doesn't want to be touched and will hurt you if you try!

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Here is MY RANT....you (the blogger) are a coward that sits behind your precious computer and bashes people that you have NO CLUE or real information about. Were you THERE that day? Have you ever been to the trail in Lewiston? THERE ARE NO SIGNS you fool!!! Why don't you get off your butt and actually go do some REAL investigation and find more out than simply posting your hate-filled blogs about people that survived death? I sure hope you and these other commenters don't experience something like this, but if you do, I HOPE you receive all the hate that you seem to enjoy spewing out to others. Go ahead and delete this and I will just post this little blog of hate to the world myself to show what a cowardly fool you are. GET A LIFE.

    1. You are absolutely right, Lindsay. I'm just going to leave your comment out here for people to read. They can judge your wisdom for themselves.