Yes, the Darwin Awards are humorus, but death in reality isn't pleasant, especially when its happening to our bros out there, even some of the best kitesurfers!!! who may have been victims of some unforeseen/uncontrollable forces.
This is definitely going to be a difficult issue to sort out properly. Regulation takes a lot of fun out of things and could eliminate a lot of people from even trying the sport. But to some degree a kite is like a loaded gun in the hands of the inexperienced or irresponsible, or as a result of some related equipment failure, pilot error, etc.
Self policing is definitely important...the more experienced should step in whenever appropriate to help avoid an accident.
Certification...maybe a good idea too, but how to do it? Do you have to have a letter from a school/instructor before you buy a kite?? I would have gone along with that idea. But then there is the used kite market...so that idea might ot work.
What about a tag with your certifiate? Then we can all police each other a little bit. If we see another kiter without a tag we ask him to pack it up.
I am sure that lots of people will ague about these concepts, but I think we should all be brainstorming and come up with some good ideas that make sense , that are easy to swallow, affordable, and effective in making sure we all know the safety issues, self rescue, proper use of equipment, etc. I certainly do not pretend to have all the ideas, or even good ones.
How about if someone starts a panel on this and compiles all the good ideas? Maybe within the next month or two we can all adopt them and move the sport in a safe direction. I would pesonally be willing to spend at least $50/year to support the organization and help pay for the certificates, tags, promotion, maybe some insurance?? And I would be willing to bet that the manufactureres and retailers would be willing to fund/sponsor this effort as well. Maybe we pool the kite manufacturers and hire an indpendent agent to put it together.
Any other suggestions??????