http://www.theherald.com.au/blogs/jeff-corbett/deadly-rock-fishing/... Different activity, different attitude.
So I'm wondering - if once every year or two on a huge coastline with I'm guessing tens of thousands of participants is not rare, what is your definition of rare? And how common must an event be to justify legislation making the wearing PPE devices mandatory? By how much does the risk need to be reduced to make it mandatory? I would assume that PFD class 1 would be required to actually help most rock fishermen who are swept off the rocks - cold rough conditions, seemingly usually at night, without any chance of a quick rescue and the likelihood of trauma from being dashed against the rocks.
I am honestly just wondering. There seems to be lots of other activities which result in many more deaths. Like going to the park and being stung by a bee or an ant and suffering an allergic reaction. We could all take a shot of adrenalin with us everywhere we went. In fact not exercising and eating junk food shortens many lives. Where do you draw the line? And how rational is it to try and protect everyone from everything? Based on a series of unfortunate incidents in the past year the government would save more lives by focusing on stopping people eating death cap mushrooms than by making life jackets for rock fisherman compulsory. Sure it's a rare event but the outcome is very severe and it can easily be avoided.
Where is the balance?
Good questions. From a State / government perspective, legislation to make a measure compulsory, probalby depends on
& all this would be talked about in terms of numbers, not "rare" "common" . if a measure has minimal cost, hardly any drawbacks to people, and can prevent a great harm, and the harm could happen to anyone - why not implement it?
Implementing it though - decisions are made by politicians. They will, we hope, take the rational argument and figures into account. But they are not bound to follow them; and may see other things as having higher priorities. Such as remaining popular, trashing their opponents, and winning elections.
Re specific points
Definition of rare - I dont define it, it really turns on numbers. At a guess, perhaps 1-2 people a year in SA get swept into the sea off rocks? Compared with 100 a year killed by cars; and 30-40 killed by their employment.
Other activities - adrenalin for everyone - . Adrenalin is a drug, there are risks as well as benefits. If done population wide. People stung, who arent actually allergic (thus dont need it) might inject it 'just in case'. Adrenalin raises blood pressure, some might get harm from that. Some may get infections at the injection site. So over SA - might reduce some problems, but will raise more, a lot more, also severe. Also the current strategy - identify people at risk, educate, issue to them - seems effective.
Re not exercising and eating junk food - the maths suggest a benefit by intervention and govt regulation. But is well known, the food industry is a very powerful lobby group. There have been several times the last few decades, when something the industry adds to food, turns out to be harmful, . Each time govt has considered regulating or discouraging, and each time, if it worked, it would do a lot of good. Each time, the industry pays the lobbyists , to pay a call on the poltiicians. Or it puts its own members on the expert boards. And the measures always get watered down or abandoned. So in that instance, intervention exists, would work, is justified - but for politicla reasons, never happens.
Death cap mushrooms - I suspect no intervention possible, to prevent deaths like those occurring in Canberra. Existing food safety legislation, would stop or discourage the chefs, from picking wild mushrooms then selling meals with them in. Food sold to the Public, has to be safe, very safe. But how does governmetn stop people going out in private - knowing the risks - and cooking for themselves to eat? Which is what these guys did? Even if we make it illegal to pick wild mushrooms - impossible to police.
So you see how it goes? & it'll be different factors for different risks, not just how common it is...
Greg, I have seen on TV where top surfers wear helmets for safety and communication with their trainers. Also useful for mounting a (waterproof) helmet cam.
I chose to buy a life jacket for sailboarding -- it is shaped to be comfortable for that activity.
A while back the government told scuba divers to clean up their act after too many caving deaths, or the government would step in. The state diving body set up training courses to certify different grades of diving.
Fisherman have more political clout to object. Hard on the search parties and grieving families.
Actually you are required by law to have a life jacket while sailboarding.
you also are required by law to have one for canoeing.
But not for using a surf ski or a surfboard.
Is this inconsistent?
Everything in life has some sort of risk.
Crossing the road for instance many would consider it sensible to check for cars (and so manage the risk).
Don, life jackets not compulsory when I bought my Tyronsea. Unfortunately not used since a negligent driver damaged by back.
ot awl !! here we go again .....
Here we go again with the here we go agains. There is plenty of opportunity for new discussion here if people can stop talking about fishing and lifejackets and nobody mentions MHL or European cycling infrastructure.
Question 1 Is it neccesary for it to be illegal to smoke in a car when children are present, use mobile phones in a car, use water craft without wearing a life jacket, break the speed limit in a motor vehicle, drive a truck with more than 5 axles down the freeway over a certain speed, draft a bus down the ANZAC Hgwy (just for AVO) etc etc etc. Answer yes
Question 2 Why?
my tuppence worth.
Any safety measures the govt introduces, where risks to an individual are low - but where the govt is guaranteed to benefit by saving health care costs - - government has to pay for those safety measures.
Eg if govt makes lifejackets compulsory for rock fishers - it must supply a suitable lifejacket, free, for all rock-fishers. The government wants the measure - it should pay.
Same with bike helmets!
If the case, cyclists would be offered the cheapest helmets, and many would still buy their own.
how do you do rock fishing with a bike?????