Aug 25 2013
Deadly Year For Recreationalists in Western TownAdd Your Comments - by Andrew Bair - Safety
We all like to have play hard! We even go to great lengths to get all the best gear and toys. However, it is never worth losing your life for the sake of fun. Our goal is to help you accelerate your play time instead of messing with burdensome roof racks. But, please be careful out there!
Moab, Utah, known across the country for its proximity to Arches and Canyonlands national parks is reeling after one of the deadliest opening seasons on record. The town of just 5000 recently experienced its fifth falling-related death in as many months, after 23-year-old Colorado woman fell nearly 200 feet near her campsite. Her death comes just weeks after another young woman was crushed by falling rocks while camping with her family.
Three others have died this year in rope related fatalities. A 20-year-old local man died in March after an anchor failed while abseiling from a popular arch, and two others perished after miscalculations during rope swinging exercises. Some people are blaming a series of viral videos for the carnage. The clips, which depict a group of twenty-somethings performing wild rope stunts in Moab locations like Corona Arch, have been viewed tens of millions of times, and traffic to these areas has risen sharply over the past few years as copycats, inspired by the stunts, attempt to replicate what they've seen.
Other Moab residents are less quick to lay blame. Such videos have been a boon for the Moab Condo Rentals industry, who have long depended on adventure sports tourism for economic vitality. The inherent danger of rope sports mandates an extremely high level of personal responsibility, some point out, and those who choose to participate must be prepared to acknowledge a certain level of risk.
Whatever one's sentiment, Moab's Search and Rescue office points out that 2013 is a statistical aberration. So far this year, nearly one in seven calls to which the team has responded has been a fatality, while the 2012 season had only one death. While half the year remains, Moab's sheriff's office is crossing their fingers that the rest of the year will proceed uneventfully.
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