New Zealand White Island rescue

Emily Davison

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Apparently the police are going to attempt a rescue attempt tomorrow morning. Is this the most stupid decision ever. Firstly it’s not a rescue. The people are dead. Secondly it risks the lives of the rescuers. The living. How is this justified. The volcano is active. Could get worse at any moment. So many things have to go right. The weather, the equipment, the speed, the volcano.

You would think after so many people losing their lives so quickly that experts like police and rescuers, plus health and safety people, would conclude this is possibly the most stupid time to attempt a rescue.

 


petaljam

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Yes, seems to me like politicians wanting to get the public and media off their backs for their previous passivity in allowing visitors to go despite the obvious dangers.

As so often though, the people whose lives are being put in danger by this decision won't be those making it, and gaining from it.
 

wombat

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The decision to try to recover bodies will be taken by the police, not politicians who have been pretty low key about starting a blame game, unlike what happens in Ireland. There are questions as to whether the volcano should have been a tourist attraction but no one questioned it before the eruption. Closer to home, there are signs at the Cliffs of Moher warning people that the cliffs are unstable aand to stay behind the fence. On my only visit, the warnings were ignored by people who wanted to lie on the edge taking spectacular photos. It was long before selfies so I can only imagine the stupidity nowadays?
 

Hillmanhunter1

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The decision to try to recover bodies will be taken by the police, not politicians who have been pretty low key about starting a blame game, unlike what happens in Ireland. There are questions as to whether the volcano should have been a tourist attraction but no one questioned it before the eruption. Closer to home, there are signs at the Cliffs of Moher warning people that the cliffs are unstable aand to stay behind the fence. On my only visit, the warnings were ignored by people who wanted to lie on the edge taking spectacular photos. It was long before selfies so I can only imagine the stupidity nowadays?
There was a guy killed at those cliffs earlier this year, taking selfies apparently.
 

petaljam

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The decision to try to recover bodies will be taken by the police, not politicians who have been pretty low key about starting a blame game, unlike what happens in Ireland. There are questions as to whether the volcano should have been a tourist attraction but no one questioned it before the eruption. Closer to home, there are signs at the Cliffs of Moher warning people that the cliffs are unstable aand to stay behind the fence. On my only visit, the warnings were ignored by people who wanted to lie on the edge taking spectacular photos. It was long before selfies so I can only imagine the stupidity nowadays?
That's the thing though: people going on an organised tour expect - in a developed country at least - that there are fairly strict safety level requirements. So individuals tend to feel that all they have to do is follow the instructions they're given.

Whereas after the eruption, a geology professor from Monash University wrote an article saying he visited it several times for work and always felt it was far too dangerous to be a mere tourist attraction.

Now I don't know what steps, if any, he himself took to warn the local town hall or tourist agencies about his fears, but since there have also been reports of increased emissions in the last weeks it really doesn't seem anything like your example of the cliffs of Moher, where individuals ignored warnings.

But in any case I don't see any evidence that these rescuers feel it's safe, quite the opposite. So since it's dangerous, and not urgent (they're not rescuing anyone) who do you think is sending them in, and if not for "political" reasons, then why?
 

Catahualpa

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Apparently the police are going to attempt a rescue attempt tomorrow morning. Is this the most stupid decision ever. Firstly it’s not a rescue. The people are dead. Secondly it risks the lives of the rescuers. The living. How is this justified. The volcano is active. Could get worse at any moment. So many things have to go right. The weather, the equipment, the speed, the volcano.

You would think after so many people losing their lives so quickly that experts like police and rescuers, plus health and safety people, would conclude this is possibly the most stupid time to attempt a rescue.

I would have thought this would be a job for NZ Special Forces etc

- & not the local cops?
 

Emily Davison

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So since it's dangerous, and not urgent (they're not rescuing anyone) who do you think is sending them in, and if not for "political" reasons, then why?
On RTE this morning they were talking about a 'rescue' but then the reporter corrected himself. This is not a rescue. This is a retrieval of dead bodies. Apparently on Satellite they can see six. But I reckon they are just ash, shape of a body but nothing there. That when they try and 'lift the body' it will disintegrate. Like a log shape or coal shape in a fire that is no longer lighting.

This volcano has been spewing out such dangerous stuff those in hospital may still die. I don't see the necessity to retrieve dead bodies where you are putting other people at risk. It's different if there was hope of saving someone.
 

Emily Davison

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I would have thought this would be a job for NZ Special Forces etc

- & not the local cops?
I'm sure the Special forces are experts in taking bodies of Islands with active volcanoes. And no doubt if this all goes wrong, the Health and Safety Guys who authorised this will not be held to account.

Let's take a different example.. Those lunatics who go up the tops of mountains and can't go up nor down. They don't get rescued if it's too dangerous. And their dead bodies are left there.
 

Catahualpa

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I'm sure the Special forces are experts in taking bodies of Islands with active volcanoes. And no doubt if this all goes wrong, the Health and Safety Guys who authorised this will not be held to account.

Let's take a different example.. Those lunatics who go up the tops of mountains and can't go up nor down. They don't get rescued if it's too dangerous. And their dead bodies are left there.
To land on this island right now would require specialist equipment - gas masks - fire proof clothing - speed and very high level of Danger awareness + the ability to move very fast - put your life on the line and work like clockwork with a Team.

I honestly don't think the local cops would have the know how to pull this off without taking huge risks.

Its not their job basically.
 

wombat

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I doubt people are going to risk their lives to retrieve bodies if the risk is unacceptable. Firefighting is a risky occupation but they assess the risk before taking an action, I'm sure they will take a similar approach to this case.
 

Dame_Enda

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It seems off the wall to allow tourists into an active volcano. Reportedly some of them were inside the crater. RIP
 

CatullusV

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Apparently the police are going to attempt a rescue attempt tomorrow morning. Is this the most stupid decision ever. Firstly it’s not a rescue. The people are dead. Secondly it risks the lives of the rescuers. The living. How is this justified. The volcano is active. Could get worse at any moment. So many things have to go right. The weather, the equipment, the speed, the volcano.

You would think after so many people losing their lives so quickly that experts like police and rescuers, plus health and safety people, would conclude this is possibly the most stupid time to attempt a rescue.

I'm sure that they will have full risk assessments in place.

It's a difficult call. The rituals of death and the attendant obsequies are expressed in many different ways in different cultures. From the burial before sundown such as that enjoyed by Dodi Fayed through to to the traditional burning on a pyre, with your widow expected to join you in your immolation.

My in-laws live close to a cemetery which has a decrepit chapel of repose, which the local mairie decided to prop up. They didn't want it to entirely collapse.

When they started work on it they discovered underneath the plaster - and covering all the walls - was a fantastic 17th century depiction of a danse macabre. Back in the day people paid their respects in a small chapel which featured the Devil playing a violin while skeletons danced and various noteworthies such as bishops, scribes, bankers were portrayed looking on in disapproval.

Then you have memento mori. Those Victorian photos of the dead, sent to relatives of the victim who couldn't make the funeral. They would sometimes strap the body to a pole in an upright posture and even paint eyes on the eyelids to convey the impression of life.

I guess my point is that for many people death needs a final resolution. A quick check that the person is indeed dead.
 

The OD

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It's a reply to someone who's an advocate of gender balance when it comes to nice safe well remunerated positions so it's a reasonable question.
After reading the reports of the horrific, life changing injuries sustained by the survivors, your use of this to advance an irrelevant point is quite crass.

Seriously, have a read in any of the major outlets - its quite harrowing and might make you rethink your previous comments. People literally had their skin burnt off. I believe NZ has put out an urgent request for over a 1000 square feet of skin for grafts.

Try a little compassion maybe?
 

The OD

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To land on this island right now would require specialist equipment - gas masks - fire proof clothing - speed and very high level of Danger awareness + the ability to move very fast - put your life on the line and work like clockwork with a Team.

I honestly don't think the local cops would have the know how to pull this off without taking huge risks.

Its not their job basically.
Based on some reports, no amount of protective gear would be enough to protect anyone landing if it goes off again. Its terrible for the families, but the living should always get precedence over the dead.

Nobody should go anywhere near the place or anywhere similar unless its to help the living.
 

petaljam

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It's a reply to someone who's an advocate of gender balance when it comes to nice safe well remunerated positions so it's a reasonable question.
It's utterly irrelevant because Emily Davison apparently thinks that nobody, male or female, should be going in there and risking their lives.

But with your obsession about women, you couldn't resist seizing the opportunity for a nasty little crack at her. There are men, women and children who have died or are horrendously injured - but yeah, we see where your priorities are.
 


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