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  #11  
Old 04-09-2007, 09:34 AM
kitemom kitemom is offline
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I am sorry this has taken so long, but this has been quite a road for our family. I just wanted to follow up on all the talk about my sons accident. I am the mom of the kiteboarder that had this accident. I agree with all the talk about being smart when kiteboarding. My son had alot of things going against him that day. One of those things by itself would more than likely not have resulted in any type of accident but put them all together and it was a bad situation. The onshore wind, no beach, the gusts coming thru at that time etc. As far as pulling the emergency release, we have determined that when he was first being drug up the beach toward the condos there was so much pull on the kite, that even though he is a strong ahtletic kid he couldn't pull the release. We have also surmised based on the eyewitness accounts, that as soon as he hit the first set of pilings, he was knocked unconcious and then couldn't really help himself in any way.

There was talk of banning kiteboarding from the beach after this happened. I don't necessarily agree with that. I do think that no boarder should be allowed out there without a helmet though. I know that is really tough to regulate but I just think it should happen. If you had been through what we just went through you would agree with me.

I also highly recommend a wetsuit. Hopefully you will never need it but it certainly kept the skin on my sons body. The few places that it was completely shaved away from being drug on the pavement, so was his skin. It saved him from alot of pain in recovery.

I am grateful every day for all the friends and people who didn't even know my son that prayed for him. Without sounding like a preacher, I have no doubt that God answers prayers and did that day. However, this was an accident that happened as the result of a choice. Every one of us makes choices on a daily basis, it is how we were created. My son chose to go out that day and participate in what some people call an extreme sport. He chose to wear the equipment he wore, and to launch the kite and unfortunately for him and his family, he paid the price. His recovery has not been without alot of pain and struggle. He has worked extremely hard to get back in shape to play football this fall and to get his life back.

Just make sure that when you do launch that kite, you are aware of the potential dangers, regardless of how remote. Most people think it will never happen to them, but it could. Reduce the odds, be smart and kite safe.
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  #12  
Old 04-09-2007, 08:28 PM
robertovillate robertovillate is offline
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Location: St. Pete, Hatteras, MI
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Hey kitemom,

Thanks for posting an update, and sharing your experience and concerns as a parent. I am sure that I can speak for many fellow kiters - we were all concerned for your son and were hoping for the best. The description of his accident is enough to make any kiter shudder. I'm glad that he's on his feet and healthy...others have been less lucky.

Helmets are a good idea, but unless it's mandated, most people will not wear one. I will admit that I do not wear one for my own personal reasons, but I would never discourage someone from wearing one. Other safety gear is a good idea as well: impact vest, booties, knife....

Perhaps just as important is to understand the inherent risks associated with any location or the weather conditions at hand. Weather quality, kiter skill level, kite gear, riding environement all play big roles in the risk factor sof riding and everyone needs to carefully evaluate before choosing to ride. Often we become over eager, or perhaps complacent...that's when a lot of accidents happen. As an instructor I try to stress this part of the learning process and hope my precautions ring loudly in my students ears for years to come. I think we all need to press the safety concerns for the good of the sport. I believe that people can continue to push the envelope hard AND be safe at the same time.

I try to read every safety thread on this forum and other forums. Rick Iossi has dedicated a lot of effort and has done a great job to contribute so much data in this respect. I hope everyone will take the time to read and learn from these reports. Do not think it cannot happen to you...if you arent careful and make bad judgement calls...the choice you make one day may be magnified into a disaster by a single gust of wind, a big wave catching you off guard, a malfunction of gear, etc.

good luck to your son and your family and hope to see him out riding again.

ride safe everyone
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4 Winds 7 Seas
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  #13  
Old 04-09-2007, 08:32 PM
Skyway Scott
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Thanks Kitemom.
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  #14  
Old 04-09-2007, 09:15 PM
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RickI RickI is offline
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Thank you for writing. Congratulations on your son's miraculous recovery and rehabilitation. People around the world were very pleased to hear the news of his sudden turn for the better so shortly after the accident. He is a very fortunate young man in many ways not the least of which is having a caring mother. Your points are well founded and obviously given from the heart with cause. I share your sentiment about helmets (and impact vests) but we are in the minority in this view currently. I suspect this too will change in time as has been the case in so many other sports. Safety in kiting can come with improved decisions based upon reasonable training, experience and good judgment. The same can be said about many activities. Other important hard won lessons are contained in your son's harsh experience. In a more positive light, it has been my experience that some will take a closer look at their own practices following learning about such accidents. So, he likely has helped others avoid similar hazards.

All the best to you and your family.
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  #15  
Old 05-05-2007, 01:51 PM
LarryCouch LarryCouch is offline
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Location: Panama City Beach, South Walton
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Pardon me if this was addressed, but did this young man take kiteboarding lessons before getting into the sport?
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  #16  
Old 05-05-2007, 06:58 PM
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kiwiar2000 kiwiar2000 is offline
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"He was reportedly had not taken lessons and was self-taught. It was indicated that he purchased his 14 m North Rhino C kite off Ebay."
(from the first paragraph of the excerpt on page 1.)
That is the problem; if you dont know what you are doing, your risking yourself big time.
Morale of the story: money and time shouldn't be a factor on your decision on safe learning on kitesurfing. End of story
-Danny
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