Friday, 26 August 2016

Risk aversity

One of the joys of living in the Alpe-Adria is the laid-back attitude to risk. Climbers, hang-gliders, base jumpers, swimmers and all and sundry can make their own decisions about risk.

Some years ago, skateboarders old enough to buy cheap airfares would gather informally in small groups, take postbuses to the high places and board down the mostly empty mountain roads. Much fun. In the UK, the official reaction would be one of horror; the bansturbationists would emerge in force, the Chief Constable would appear on TV, MPs would demand new laws to ban boarders and local councils would deploy wardens to patrol all the steep roads with powers to seize boards. After all, the UK is a nation where it is now forbidden to roll a round cheese down a grass hill because of 'elf-n-safety. 

Here? They gave it a small marketing budget, closed the road once a year and inaugerated an international treff. Boarders wishing to hurtle down a mountain road at 75kmh can do so without restriction. Injuries are their affair. The little road that runs past my house is on a 3km long nursery slope and about once a week two or three learner boarders rattle past at modest speed, huge grins on their faces. It's a joy to see.  

Video and vox pops at


Sackerson said...

You forgot to say, they wouldn't do it here in the UK because the road surfaces are so poorly maintained that it would be an orgy of self-slaughter.

DeeDee99 said...

As long as they have accident insurance so that treatment for any injuries is their responsibility, not taxapayers, good luck to them.

Since a few idiotic Asians entered the sea fully clothed at Camber and drowned, it won't be long before the 'elf n safety' brigade start a campaign to ban swimming in the sea here.

Unfortunately, they can't legislate for common sense.

Poisonedchalice said...

Bollox to plod. That's what I would say. Anyway, the event continues and the authorities can FRO. What next? I know of a number of excellent gun and tackle shops. Are they to be held responsible for what they sell?

Anonymous said...

What are these people doing idling away their lives in this dangerous pursuit?

They could be working for the government trying to find ways to stop this sort of thing... Someone might get hurt.

These 'idiotic Asians' that DeeDee speaks of... Are we sure that they didn't approach the beach in a somewhat unconventional manner?


mikebravo said...

Speaking of Camber Sands.

When I first went there with my mother, aged about 8 I received the full lecture about not letting the sea get behind you there. I wasn't allowed anywhere near the sea until I understood.
A few years later I was nearly caught out when the water was nearly up to my waist on the way back. It was terrifying. The water runs through the lower areas like a fast river. If you fall over you are in the shit and the sand gets very soft and sucks your feet in.

Very sorry for the poor chaps. No local knowledge and no information probably.

The bansturbators will be cranking it up soon but the warning is now out there.

Flaxen Saxon said...

A sensible response to folk who accept the risk.

Rush-is-Right said...


I've not encountered that word before, but as of now it is part of my vocabulary. Thank you!

leila said...

Standing in 9 inches of water at Pennington beach, Natal SA with the children all around I was plucked off my feet and propelled parallel to the beach in front of the rock swimming pool Huge breakers rolled in headed for the rocks, and the only survival trick was to dive under each breaker The rip current, stronger than the wave force spat me out at the other end leaving me with an enduring respect for the sea.

Demetrius said...

How many have won Darwin Awards?

Anonymous said...

I see Branson's done a purler on his bike. Pity the wanker didn't break his neck.


mikebravo said...

The good Lord has punished Branson for being a remainer.

I wonder what he has in store for Geldof!

Anonymous said...

mikebravo said @ 16:07

'I wonder what he has in store for Geldof!'

Something terminal involving amyl nitrate I hope.


Raedwald said...

Oh dear. The clamour for the government to 'do something' about Camber Sands is growing; swimming licences perhaps, with categories for pool, inland water or sea? Harsh fines for swimming without a licence? Training including proper behaviour towards children and wimmin of the opposite sex? Compulsory swimming insurance? Licences restricted to beaches for which the swimmer has a Certificate of Competence ... I can see a whole new government department here

Michael said...

We mustn't forget that Camber Sands was the main scene for the noble film, 'Dunkirk'!

They took over the whole beach back then, and also the harbour in Rye, where I remember seeing John Mills and his chums, smoking fags and being normal people while they weren't acting.

The cafe you see in some of the pics from this latest problem was the field hospital in the flick, and many chums from local areas were paid a few bob to become refugees as extras.

Happy days!

Camber's as safe as houses, until you decide to play football in the sea and realise you can't swim.

Raedwald said...

Michael - I remember my first trip to Rye in my little IP24, making passage from Newhaven, negotiating the training wall with a 3m swell running then finding the passage for the first time to the town quay, just lightly going aground at Stone point; mooring with breast lines only and stepping ashore on the level only to come back after 5 pints and an Indian to discover the 6m tidal range and a hazardous climb down a slimy green wooden ladder to leap in the dark hoping a deck was there ... Ah, happy days!

Anonymous said...

Raedwald said @ 17:37

'Oh dear. The clamour for the government to 'do something' about Camber Sands is growing..'

They were trying to walk to Calais. Someone told them it was nice this time of year.