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Old 12-21-2016, 08:19 AM   #41
Trail Boss
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"Stupidity" is a bit harsh, don't you think? Perhaps "Pre-existing Condition"?
/s

But seriously, New Hampshire isn't imposing a fine (a penalty) for the rescue. They're charging you for "services rendered" if they perceive it was due to being negligent or reckless.
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Old 12-21-2016, 08:26 AM   #42
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"Stupidity" is a bit harsh, don't you think? Perhaps "Pre-existing Condition"?
/s

But seriously, New Hampshire isn't imposing a fine (a penalty) for the rescue. They're charging you for "services rendered" if they perceive it was due to being negligent or reckless.
Yep, I like their system. It sounds more than fair.
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Old 12-21-2016, 04:07 PM   #43
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Here's my favorite part of this whole story:

"A GoFundMe page launched Thursday seeks to raise money for the medical bills – and a trip to Paris – for a pair of Niskayuna hikers rescued from Algonquin Peak on Tuesday.: https://dailygazette.com/article/201...rescued-hikers
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Old 12-21-2016, 04:27 PM   #44
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Here's my favorite part of this whole story:

"A GoFundMe page launched Thursday seeks to raise money for the medical bills – and a trip to Paris – for a pair of Niskayuna hikers rescued from Algonquin Peak on Tuesday.: https://dailygazette.com/article/201...rescued-hikers
This from the GoFundMe page:

Quote:
This is Madison's sister Elizabeth. Madison Popolizio and Blake Alois are two of the most amazing individuals I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. They are not asking for this, but after witnessing what they went through I believe they deserve it. Please help support Madison and Blake on their road to recovery. We would like to raise money to help both Madison and Blake with their medical bills.

HOWEVER, Madison and Blake are simply happy to be alive. They feel their safety is enough. They would like to use any money raised in their name and donate it to those who braved the mountain to help rescue them.

Last edited by Justin; 12-21-2016 at 04:38 PM..
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Old 12-21-2016, 09:55 PM   #45
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Lost hikers found alive

There's a problem. NYS DEC AND NYSP cannot accept financial donations.


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Old 12-22-2016, 12:55 AM   #46
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@nickchevy

First, let's not overlook that New Hampshire will hand you a bill for rescue services only if you are deemed to be negligent or reckless. If you bought an inexpensive "Hike Safe" card, think of it as rescue insurance, you'll be covered even if you were negligent (but not if found to be reckless). Basically, the state provides free rescues but not if you did something that a competent individual wouldn't.

Second, handing you a bill for services rendered isn't all that unusual is it? I don't know about Ontario but here in Quebec, if you get to the hospital by ambulance, you'll receive a bill that's more along the lines of limo service rather than Uber.
Let me understand this. Will New Hampshire also send a bill to someone who recklessly speeds, goes off the road and has to be "rescued" with the jaws of life? If not, then why single out the "reckless" hiker vs. the driver?
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Old 12-22-2016, 07:00 AM   #47
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Let me understand this. Will New Hampshire also send a bill to someone who recklessly speeds, goes off the road and has to be "rescued" with the jaws of life? If not, then why single out the "reckless" hiker vs. the driver?
Your car/health insurance will be billed for the EMTs, the ambulance ride, the medivac helicopter, etc, wouldn't it? And if you were recklessly speeding, or driving under the influence, you'd be fined/arrested/lose your license.
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Old 12-22-2016, 08:53 AM   #48
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There's a problem. NYS DEC AND NYSP cannot accept financial donations.
The Forest Rangers have a scholarship charity that they organize. They often direct offers of financial donations to that cause.
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Old 12-22-2016, 09:13 AM   #49
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The Forest Rangers have a scholarship charity that they organize. They often direct offers of financial donations to that cause.

Forest Ranger Scholarship Fund
P.O. Box 72
Warrensburg, NY 12885


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Old 12-22-2016, 09:34 AM   #50
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The Forest Rangers have a scholarship charity that they organize. They often direct offers of financial donations to that cause.
Not a lot of real information available on this. Ranger Rick Schroeder is the lead. They used to sell baseball caps with the DEC logo patch on the front to raise funds.
http://www.nonprofitfacts.com/NY/For...ation-Inc.html
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Old 12-22-2016, 09:52 AM   #51
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Let me understand this. Will New Hampshire also send a bill to someone who recklessly speeds, goes off the road and has to be "rescued" with the jaws of life? If not, then why single out the "reckless" hiker vs. the driver?
I can't answer that because I don't know how it works there but I'm inclined to believe what JohnnyVirgil said that you can't walk away from it without being billed for something.

Your choice of analogy, a car accident, is one I've used to describe this incident. Imagine if the couple had minimal winter driving skills, made a rookie mistake, and flipped the family car into a ditch. They're found two days later, huddled in the back seat. Would this story get equally romanticized? Become the darlings of social-media and appear on morning TV? Would there be a GoFundMe campaign?

I realize the comparison is imperfect but my point is to contrast something many people do (driving) to something far fewer do (winter hiking). For driving, the general public has a good idea of what's prudent behavior and what risks can/cannot be mitigated.

If someone says "they shouldn't have slammed their brakes on the icy pavement", others, through personal experience, will quietly nod in agreement. They won't reply with "You're being elitist" or "It's unavoidable" or "Why so negative?" or "It's easy to be Monday Morning Quarterback".

Compare it to when the incident is out of their wheelhouse, like atop a wintry alpine summit. Now the general public's perceives the victim's actions are without fault. Attempts to show it was beginner's error are met with disapproval if not outrage. "Have you no compassion?!?" "It was unavoidable!" "They survived didn't they?"

We most certainly ought to empathize with a fellow human in pain or distress. We should also investigate the cause of the misery and learn if there's a way to avoid it in the future. By sharing our discoveries, we also demonstrate empathy; we help others avoid painful, sometimes fatal, mistakes.

The more you explore the details of this incident, the more convincing is the case that they lacked the required skills to be in an alpine zone in winter. They brought a knife to a gunfight.
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Old 12-22-2016, 10:25 AM   #52
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This from the GoFundMe page:
Yes Justin, i did check out the Fund me page and see they revised their original plea for a trip to Paris (one must recover from such an ordeal somehow ) to the more palliative cause of SAR. However unless you're a little kid and family struggling with a deadly disease these pages disgust me, internet beggars. If they both live in NYS then they both should have HI unless they are skirting the law. In fact his mom states in the Gazette article that they have more than enough HI to cover his medical bills. And if you want to show your appreciation to the Men & Women who saved your unprepared a$$ then DO something beside beg, maybe a spaghetti supper?
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Old 12-22-2016, 11:14 AM   #53
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Here's my favorite part of this whole story:

"A GoFundMe page launched Thursday seeks to raise money for the medical bills and a trip to Paris for a pair of Niskayuna hikers rescued from Algonquin Peak on Tuesday.: https://dailygazette.com/article/201...rescued-hikers
I find this to be in poor taste. Looks like people are actually donating, too.
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Old 12-22-2016, 11:19 AM   #54
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Yes Justin, i did check out the Fund me page and see they revised their original plea for a trip to Paris (one must recover from such an ordeal somehow ) to the more palliative cause of SAR. However unless you're a little kid and family struggling with a deadly disease these pages disgust me, internet beggars. If they both live in NYS then they both should have HI unless they are skirting the law. In fact his mom states in the Gazette article that they have more than enough HI to cover his medical bills. And if you want to show your appreciation to the Men & Women who saved your unprepared a$$ then DO something beside beg, maybe a spaghetti supper?
Ok thanks.
I'm in no position to judge what is right & wrong for what a family member does for their loved ones.
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Old 12-22-2016, 03:10 PM   #55
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Not knowing how well it works in NH, I have serious reservations regarding billing or fining people for rescue.
Some people will definitely delay calling for help (esp. if they don't realize seriousness of their situation) if they think a bill will be attached. If you look at the ranger reports, you know how many "escort" out of the woods incidents there are. Those simple escorts can very well turn to full blown SAR if the individual waits until s/he is in dire circumstances / condition before calling for help.
Billing someone in NY is the simple part, getting them to pay the bill is a whole other animal. Someone can turn around and try to sue the entity (DEC / NYSP / Volunteer SAR / even a "good Samaritan") claiming something as frivolous as they never asked to be extracted. (Even in this incident, the party rescued did not technically initiate the SAR)... By the time the suit is settled or resolved, will there be any benefit to the taxpayers?

They can require some kind of "public shaming", like requiring those rescued to perform community service or appear in a public service / educational video... (someone will probably try to challenge this in court though)

I sincerely hope the couple in this incident makes a full and speedy recovery. I'm confident they "learned their lesson" (the hard way).
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Old 12-22-2016, 03:58 PM   #56
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Not knowing how well it works in NH, I have serious reservations regarding billing or fining people for rescue.
Some people will definitely delay calling for help (esp. if they don't realize seriousness of their situation) if they think a bill will be attached. If you look at the ranger reports, you know how many "escort" out of the woods incidents there are. Those simple escorts can very well turn to full blown SAR if the individual waits until s/he is in dire circumstances / condition before calling for help.
Billing someone in NY is the simple part, getting them to pay the bill is a whole other animal. Someone can turn around and try to sue the entity (DEC / NYSP / Volunteer SAR / even a "good Samaritan") claiming something as frivolous as they never asked to be extracted. (Even in this incident, the party rescued did not technically initiate the SAR)... By the time the suit is settled or resolved, will there be any benefit to the taxpayers?

They can require some kind of "public shaming", like requiring those rescued to perform community service or appear in a public service / educational video... (someone will probably try to challenge this in court though)

I sincerely hope the couple in this incident makes a full and speedy recovery. I'm confident they "learned their lesson" (the hard way).
Frivolous lawsuits are a whole 'nuther discussion, and in my opinion, most of what's wrong with our legal system. But you make good points.
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Old 12-22-2016, 04:29 PM   #57
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... Some people will definitely delay calling for help ...
Is your assertion based on evidence or opinion? If evidence, I'd like to read it.

One could simply refuse rescue services. Although I have trouble imagining anyone doing that. Kind of like crawling out of a car wreck and waving off the paramedics and ambulance. "Send your bill to whoever placed the call, 'cuz it wasn't me!"

Unpaid bills?
Collecting on unpaid bills?
Not concepts unique to paid rescue work; commonplace and solutions are already in place.

There have been a few high profile rescue incidents in New Hampshire. To my knowledge, all plaintiffs contesting the fee lost in court. One that comes to mind was a hiker with an artificial hip. Nothing wrong with that but it had displaced itself twice in non-hiking situations. The hiker had to take special precautions to avoid displacing it during a hike. Unfortunately, it happened anyway. The tipping point for the situation was he was near treeline and heading into a nasty storm (forecasted). Long story short, he was found to be reckless.

PS
I know of this instance where Maine charged two hikers for their rescue:
http://www.adkhighpeaks.com/forums/f...ter-state-park
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Old 12-22-2016, 08:20 PM   #58
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Is your assertion based on evidence or opinion? If evidence, I'd like to read it.
It is based on "common sense", if there's still such a thing this day and age.

Say someone is caught unaware in the woods by early nightfall (with no flashlight). If the person knows he's going to be charged $1,000 for being escorted out of the woods, he may well decide to 'rough it out' for the night. The next morning, he is sore, stiff and dehydrated. One wrong decision and he's lost in the 'bush'. Now not only is there a "missing person", there's a MP in distress...

Take another scenario:
Someone is overdue from a hike (like in this case). The contact has no evidence that the hiker is in any distress, but knows there's a stiff fine / penalty / bill if 'authorities' are notified. That person may well delay until the following day to call for help. In the mean time the hiker in distress is either managing to 'self-rescue' or getting deeper into trouble.

Anyways, I won't trouble you further with my 'opinions' (either you understand or not and you can agree or disagree, but the evidence needs to come from the other side to prove that such a fee/fine system does not endanger back country users and SAR)
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Old 12-22-2016, 08:39 PM   #59
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Or... as I often see is the case, the fellow hunters/hikers/friends/family will attempt a disorganized "search party" on their own before contacting authorities, thus not only delaying professional SAR organization while burning valuable daylight, but also contaminating the area and making a total mess out of any possible future tracking via visual clues or K9 scents.
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Old 12-22-2016, 09:40 PM   #60
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It is based on "common sense", if there's still such a thing this day and age.
So it's opinion after all. Common sense is based on perception and only infrequently on evidence.

The first example is personal choice. If you don't think your life is worth $1000 bucks, roll the dice and see what happens the next day. Certainly an argument for buying a $25 Hike Safe card. If someone thinks their life isn't worth even that much, they have greater problems.

The second example is a matter of proper communications. Tell your emergency contact to call it in only if there's no word by umpteen hours, or the next day (or the day after or whatever one wants). That'll avoid having SAR show up only because (for example) you wanted an extra night in the woods.

I overlooked to mention the ultimate preventer of premature SAR and that's the PLB/SEND device. Hit the big red queasy button only when everything goes pear-shaped.

Quote:
The evidence needs to come from the other side to prove that such a fee/fine system does not endanger back country users and SAR)
Apparently not. Explore how it was instituted in New Hampshire (and Colorado).

Last edited by Trail Boss; 12-22-2016 at 09:57 PM..
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