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Old 14.06.2011, 10:10
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8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

An eight year old girl was killed this weekend while going down a home-made zipline and smashing into a tree while attending an organised children's camp. Security measures had failed and she hit the tree with high speed. The group leaders have now banned all self-made zip lines.

Tragic.

http://www.20min.ch/news/zuerich/story/28684745
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Old 15.06.2011, 23:05
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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An eight year old girl was killed this weekend while going down a home-made zipline and smashing into a tree while attending an organised children's camp. Security measures had failed and she hit the tree with high speed. The group leaders have now banned all self-made zip lines.

Tragic.

http://www.20min.ch/news/zuerich/story/28684745
I read the story in 2 newspapers and on the internet and still cannot help to find the idea of "self-made zip-lines" extremely silly. But I would not make some "small" tour-guides the culprits, but rather look at those folks who approved or at least tolerated this nonsense. I also might love to know where the extreme idea came from.
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Old 16.06.2011, 07:48
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

Absolutely tragic. You send your darling to a camp so she will have fun, and this happens.

Self-made zip lines sounds like an accident waiting to happen; how didn't we think to tell our kids "don't go hanging off a rope, speeding down in the middle of trees"?
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Old 16.06.2011, 09:42
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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Absolutely tragic. You send your darling to a camp so she will have fun, and this happens.

Self-made zip lines sounds like an accident waiting to happen; how didn't we think to tell our kids "don't go hanging off a rope, speeding down in the middle of trees"?
A problem is that those zip-lines were NOT made by the children but by the "camp-leaders". The state-prosecution is now investigating who was responsible for all this ! Some people have to fear serious consequences, like losing job or at worst a prison sentence, as people speak about nonsense and negligence, etc
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Old 16.06.2011, 10:22
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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A problem is that those zip-lines were NOT made by the children but by the "camp-leaders". The state-prosecution is now investigating who was responsible for all this ! Some people have to fear serious consequences, like losing job or at worst a prison sentence, as people speak about nonsense and negligence, etc
That's certainly how it would end in the UK - in 2002 a group of scouts were walking in Snowdonia (hilly region of north Wales) and one of the scouts (aged 10) fell to his death.

Around a year later I was completing my BELA (Basic Expedition Leaders Award) and this was highlighted to us as a case where although all the correct paperwork was in place (routes approved prior to setting off, qualified expedition leader, risk assessments all done and filed prior to departure etc) the leader ended up getting jailed for manslaughter.

In this tragic case with the zipline it sounds as if it was a less-than-perfect set up and so the organisers are almost certainly going to be exposed to some form of prosecution (albeit this opinion is solely based on my rudimentary German reading of the tabloid press reports)
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Old 16.06.2011, 10:52
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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That's certainly how it would end in the UK - in 2002 a group of scouts were walking in Snowdonia (hilly region of north Wales) and one of the scouts (aged 10) fell to his death.

Around a year later I was completing my BELA (Basic Expedition Leaders Award) and this was highlighted to us as a case where although all the correct paperwork was in place (routes approved prior to setting off, qualified expedition leader, risk assessments all done and filed prior to departure etc) the leader ended up getting jailed for manslaughter.
The article you linked to said he was acquitted, not jailed.

Tom
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:00
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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That's certainly how it would end in the UK - in 2002 a group of scouts were walking in Snowdonia (hilly region of north Wales) and one of the scouts (aged 10) fell to his death.

After a few tragic accidents with zip lines on Scout activities a few years ago in the U.K., a strict code of practice was drawn up for zip-line operation including using an approved trolley, and how to construct and test a braking system.

There was no excuse for not following guidelines when children are at risk of accidents but there's a fine line between children being allowed to be children and all risk being removed.

This was touched on on the Grosser Mythen safety rope thread.

My thoughts are that children should feel the element of risk and danger but with the actual risk and danger reduced as much as possible.

So, zip lining (which children love!) should remain but should be made as safe as possible.

In this Swiss case, the particular organisation in question has banned the use of home-made zip lines and only allows participants to use purpose-built lines.
I think this is a knee-jerk reaction (it may be a temporary one), and it would be better to have some strict code of practice for building your own.
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:04
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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I think this is a knee-jerk reaction (it may be a temporary one), and it would be better to have some strict code of practice for building your own.
Indeed it is.. as far as I am aware, they have existing guidelines, that may or may not have been followed (to be determined - and not by the media..thanks).

I know of people who have done CEVI or Pfadi (Scouts) and I can personally say that they do their utmost to have a fun time outside with the little ones BUT with the greatest respect for risks involved and how to diminish those.

Last edited by herc82; 16.06.2011 at 11:47. Reason: added detail
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:06
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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After a few tragic accidents with zip lines on Scout activities a few years ago in the U.K., a strict code of practice was drawn up for zip-line operation including using an approved trolley, and how to construct and test a braking system.

There was no excuse for not following guidelines when children are at risk of accidents but there's a fine line between children being allowed to be children and all risk being removed.

This was touched on on the Grosser Mythen safety rope thread.

My thoughts are that children should feel the element of risk and danger but with the actual risk and danger reduced as much as possible.

So, zip lining (which children love!) should remain but should be made as safe as possible.

In this Swiss case, the particular organisation in question has banned the use of home-made zip lines and only allows participants to use purpose-built lines.
I think this is a knee-jerk reaction (it may be a temporary one), and it would be better to have some strict code of practice for building your own.
Amen Tom!..

Kids, have to still be kids but the risks reduced. Both cases here and the fall whilst walking are tragic but to tie up in paperwork of risk assessment for a hike!! Health and safety world gone crazy. The strict code of practice seems a better idea for me..
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:24
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

This is so tragic. As a teacher in the UK, I've organised so many trips both in UK and abroad, including skiing and snowboarding. Nowadays, every single activity, afternoon trip or whatever, has to have a full risk assessment, insurance, etc, etc. On the one hand, as a parent and grand-parent, I am so glad things are done to make things safer. And yet, the sum total is that my younger colleagues do not go Youth Hostelling with kids in their own time at week-ends, do not organise French/German exchanges, do not organise after school clubs (often in our own time in ye olde days), etc, etc. And in the end all the kids suffer, in so many ways. I actually believe that if we take all risks away from children, it actually becomes more dangerous in the long term (as they lose physical balance and coordination and all basic instincts).

Last edited by Odile; 16.06.2011 at 12:11.
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:35
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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The article you linked to said he was acquitted, not jailed.

Tom
Good point

Willing to accept that we were scaremongered on our course as to what might happen if we took a risk
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:43
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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That's certainly how it would end in the UK - in 2002 a group of scouts were walking in Snowdonia (hilly region of north Wales) and one of the scouts (aged 10) fell to his death.

Around a year later I was completing my BELA (Basic Expedition Leaders Award) and this was highlighted to us as a case where although all the correct paperwork was in place (routes approved prior to setting off, qualified expedition leader, risk assessments all done and filed prior to departure etc) the leader ended up getting jailed for manslaughter.

In this tragic case with the zipline it sounds as if it was a less-than-perfect set up and so the organisers are almost certainly going to be exposed to some form of prosecution (albeit this opinion is solely based on my rudimentary German reading of the tabloid press reports)
Here, the campleader(s) in question has/have a chance to get away with "causing death by negligence" (Fahrlässige Tötung) and so, with a conditionally suspended prison sentence. In addition to that, some folks higher up the echelons have to fear for their jobs, as it will also be investigated who had approved the whole scheme beforehand.

At the other hand, a commentator in Tages-Anzeiger wrote, that it is necessary to put matters in perspectives and realize that there are more than 2000 such camps in CH per year, not to speak of school-classes and sports-clubs camping-out. That there of course always is a certain risk as soon as things get sportive or adventourous. She also wrote that people should abstain from condemning the campleaders prematurely.
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:47
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

A couple of years ago I went on a work "bonding" thing to this place:

http://www.parc-aventure.ch/

Despite all the safety measures one of my colleagues still face-planted a tree and broke a tooth...
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Old 16.06.2011, 11:55
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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The article you linked to said he was acquitted, not jailed.

Tom
Good point

Willing to accept that we were scaremongered on our course as to what might happen if we took a risk
Indeed, the lesson is that you need to do all the paperwork to show that you've done your job - if you do it and do it right, then you'll be acquitted... Doesn't take away 100% of the risk though.

I didn't realise these things were called "zip-lines" - we've (or I) have always refered to them as "death-slides".

Great fun as they may be, I would be nervous about using a "home made" one, a little like I'd be nervous about using a "home made" bungy cord...

Tragic. I hope that the investigation can actually show what was the real cause of the accident.
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Old 22.06.2011, 22:56
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

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Indeed, the lesson is that you need to do all the paperwork to show that you've done your job - if you do it and do it right, then you'll be acquitted... Doesn't take away 100% of the risk though.

I didn't realise these things were called "zip-lines" - we've (or I) have always refered to them as "death-slides".

Great fun as they may be, I would be nervous about using a "home made" one, a little like I'd be nervous about using a "home made" bungy cord...

Tragic. I hope that the investigation can actually show what was the real cause of the accident.
That you have to do the required paperwork in unbelievably many situations is clear, important however is that you
- use common sense
- consider whether your idea is waterproof
- arrange that an adult tests the installation

The investigation of course will show whether the whole thing was rubbish, or whether just something in particular was faulty
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Old 02.07.2011, 20:05
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Re: 8 year old killed in zipline accident at ZH camp

The self made zip line is the problem, its why would you use your own breaking device, you not get the proper breaking devices that your not 100% sure wont fail but certainly more sure wont fail, and there's so many Seil parks (in german) all around switzerland why not just go to one of those where there is an extensive networks of sip lines
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