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Topic - "English Visitors Must Follow Safety Warnings"

Trangia - on 15 Feb 2013

David Gibson, chief officer of the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, yesterday urged English visitors to follow safety warnings after a recent spate of hillwalking accidents.

'Looking at some of the recent incidents they seem to involve people from outside of Scotland,' said Mr Gibson. 'We are looking - together with the British Mountaineering Council and the Scottish Mountain Safety Forum - at getting some of the safety information to south of the border prior to people coming up.

'Today the risk in the area of the avalanche was 'considerable', which means that walking in an area could trigger an avalanche or it could happen spontaneously.

'At the end of the day people must make their own decisions after assessing the risks and being prepared - but use the information provided.

'The sport does carry risks - it would not be adventurous if there were not risks.

'But the situation has to be viewed in context.

The above is a quote from a warning published by Daily Mail* issued by The Mountaineering Council of Scotland

David Gibson's warning to the English visitors in the aftermath of the tragedy yesterday in the Cairngorms suggests that English mountaineers are mre prone to weather related accidents than Scotttish mountaineers.

I don't know what this warning is based on but I suspect one of the reasons may be that for the English and Welsh to visit the Highlands involves making holiday commitments away from work followed by a long journey to reach them often accompanied by having booked and paid for accommodation.

All of this increases the pressure to "get something done" during a tight window. This window is often frustrated by by poor/dangerous snow and weather conditions. Scottish mountaineers are less likely to be under such pressure and can often "take it or leave it" depending on conditions and leave any descision to the last moment. That's not an option available to someone who has booked leave, travelled up and paid for accommodation, and because of this pressure to do some routes they may succumb to tempation when they shouldn't.

* I don't normally read this rag but was referred to it and incenced by comments made by some of it's readers about yesterday's tragedy
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