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Kiteboarder Fatality In Puerto Rico

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Webwart
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Postby Webwart » Mon Jul 01, 2002 2:56 pm

..additionally to safety knife and impact vest I wear at least on one hand wakeboard gloves, which makes it way easier to pull the kitelines.
Wearing gloves you don't have to wrap the lines around the hand in order to pull the line for relauch or in case of an accident.

Without gloves its almost impossible to pull the kiteline without wrapping them around the hand; a gust gets your kite up faster than you'll able to get your hand out of the lines.

world is konkave@ewigkiten.de
Webwart

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RickI
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Postby RickI » Mon Jul 01, 2002 3:17 pm

Excellent point. I have worn gloves for years while kiteboarding. Mainly to minimize blisters from 6 -7 hour sessions but also to help with line handling. They have some gloves out that have kevlar fibers on the palms. The kevlar should provide some cut resistance as well. Considering in this sport you normally deal with 400 ft. of line sometimes moving at speed with substantial cutting potential, it only makes common sense to have gear to deal with that.

So in addition to a good helmet, low bulk pfd,(formerly impact jacket), hook knife(s), whistle we should also wear gloves. It may sound like a lot of stuff it but it really isn't. I have used worn this gear for years and I generally don't even remember I have it on while out shredding. If you need it, it can make all the difference.

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Postby Jonnykitesurfer » Mon Jul 01, 2002 5:16 pm

Hi Rick , you are doing a great job on safety. I'm using every safety gear and issue that all you guys could think of. Everybody should read your safety guidelines. Now with
all the possible bans that may come to us. I think we should have a organisation & assosiation, controling kitesurfing. The reason i'm saying this is because tomorrow i'm going Paragliding for the first time, and to do so i must go to paragliding school for two days with proffessional instrutors guiding me. Now if i want to glide on my own i must take course number two to qualifie and be certified in that catigorie . The same for handgliders, parachuters,motorrised paragliders,deltaplane, ect.. Our sport may indeed need be motitored in the same way. The guys here in Canada at Sauble Beach Kitesurfing School are part of the same assosiation as paraglider and handgliders. What do you think and what assosiation in US mite take care of this problem and concerne.
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RickI
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Postby RickI » Mon Jul 01, 2002 5:34 pm

Hello Johnny,

You have analyzed things very well. Kiteboarding has a number of critical similarities to hang gliding and paragliding. While we are kiteboarding we are at the mercy of the weather and particularly wind gusts to a high degree. The other hazards and things riders need to know to stay healthy and whole and to keep bystanders that way are extensive. Given the uncertain reliability of safety gear and lofting forces that can move cars and cutting forces that can slice to bone, it demands a lot of knowledge and skill.

This sport is DEFINITELY NOT AS EASY AS IT LOOKS!!! We are undertaking to improve the state of things with regard to training, certification courses, etc. but things are in the early stages. PASA, IKO and other groups are moving along similar lines and some are further ahead in this process. The AKA Kiteboarding Committee is soon to expand membership of kiteboarding leadership to full regional representation of the entire USA. We are also thinking about taking it internationally as well. The major near term goals will be to try to improve safety and work to assure kiteboarding access. These problems are happening around the world right now and the consequences are not good. More updates on this will be posted periodically.

Rick Iossi

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Postby Crusher » Wed Jul 03, 2002 12:08 pm

Rick

First, thank you for providing the information it is very unbias and infomative.

Has anyone considered the possibility of blunt trama? You can get knocked out just by hitting the water with speed. I've seen guys blowing bubbles after going down hot. It only takes about 20-25 feet of air and thats low if you know what your doing. Hitting the water doesn't leave a mark.
I didn't hear if the 'leash' was infact a shackle. Do you know? I've riden PR a couple of times and most guys out there use shackles. If this is the case and you are knocked out on impact a vest wouldn't save you.

My condolences to the family & friends this is an unfortant event.

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Postby RickI » Wed Jul 03, 2002 1:39 pm

The people that I spoke with indicated that although the rider was getting some jumps, they weren't that high with the lighter winds. I agree, slamming in from 25 ft. or higher brings the potential for all sorts of problems. The rider was hooked in at one point but was not using a snap shackle from what I have been told. Thanks for the ideas.

Rick Iossi.

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Postby NIKS » Wed Jul 03, 2002 1:43 pm

Buy a Knife!!!!!!!!
I go now, I had one in the harness (DAKINE) but I lost it. So I will have a new one. Anybody can suggest where to buy good knives for lines? I don't think the one for divers are perfect because those could get tangled with the board leash.
If somebody knows, please inform.
It happen to me to get tangled with the lines when my kite stalled nearbay a stream river. I tried to get to it but the current was going one side and the wind to the other. It is still the worst situation I had faced with the kite.
I found myself in few seconds tangled with the lines and because of the long wet suit I couldnt get rid of the lines.
Fortunately my brother resqued me getting the kite and I had 5 minute!!! to get rid of the lines. If I had a knife I would have cutted everything.
Buy a knife.
Niks

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Postby Fabjet1 » Mon Jul 08, 2002 4:40 pm

I want to extend my sincere condolences and regrets to Miguel's family and friends.

Very tragic event, we are still in the mystery of what really happened.
You hear about all these accidents but somehow they stay detached from you until it happens to your buddy that was on the water the same day...


It is good to try to understand what happened to promote safety, but try not to blame, the majority of kitesurfer today are still kiting with similar set up.....

Latter,
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Postby RickI » Mon Jul 08, 2002 10:44 pm

It is sad to have three fatalities in about one month. Unfortunately, it appears likely that there will be more given that the kiteboarding season is starting to take off in the northern hemisphere. Kiteboarding is a dangerous sport but many of the accidents that have and will occur in this sport in the future, are avoidable. As our numbers are increasing so will the quantity of accidents, incidents and as a consequence, fatalities.

There is a great deal to know and practice to manage the great forces that are possible in this sport. The level of care shown by many riders in pursuing this sport is not sufficient to avoid, some of these avoidable accidents. Only a small minority of riders use of safety gear including helmets, functioning depowering leashes, impact pfds, gloves, whistles.

I am receiving reports from around the world indicating that the majority of experienced riders don't use leashes. This practice is irresponsible, very short sighted and ignores predicatable, inevidable consequences both to ourselves and others.

We need to start to take this sport more seriously. It is far more involved than it looks to perform it safely. The goal of this is not to assign fault but to promote more responsible and safe riding practices. Society will not ignore these incidents, accidents and fatalities indefinitely as has largely happened in many areas to date. It will move to restrict our activities, for "our own good", if we don't react effectively first.

This sport demands a certain level of care, awareness, training and safety gear in the long term to assure safety. To do otherwise is to set ourselves up for avoidable losses.

Rick Iossi


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