Search and Rescue Insurance

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Nick, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. Nick

    Nick Post 'em if you got 'em! .

    This is interesting.


    TELLURIDE - Avalanche danger in the mountains was at a dangerous level Tuesday night. Most areas in the high country were colored red, which is considered high. Along the Front Range, mountains were listed as "considerable."
    So far this season, we've had five reported avalanche deaths in Colorado. The latest was a week and a half ago near Telluride.
    It costs counties a lot of money to launch a search and rescue team. San Miguel County Sheriff Bill Masters estimates the cost being around $50,000 per rescue.
    As a result, some people are recommending increasing ski lift tickets to help cover the costs, even forcing the people who are being rescued to pick up the tab.
    Masters believes in the European method, where if the person willingly puts themselves in a dangerous situation, they should be billed.
    "If you go out and engage in these recreational pursuits you will be billed for your rescue and you'll be obligated through the courts to pay for that rescue if you don't buy the insurance," Masters said.
    The Search and Rescue department in San Miguel County only has a $100,000 budget. Finding money to cover the cost of rescues is difficult, Masters says.
    He says people who purchase back country insurance should be exempt from the costs, since they were responsible.
    Masters says it only cost $12 for five years of insurance.
    "If you go out and buy a hunk of climbing rope and want to go out on a 14er and you fall off and brake your leg you're suddenly a victim and all of the assets of the county are supposed to come and help you? Well, I'm not sure if that's a good system. I think you should be responsible and held accountable if you are engaged in these types of recreational pursuits," Masters said.
    Masters says the number of people participating in extreme back country sports is growing. And he says it's tough for counties to keep an eye on everyone.
    If you'd like to learn more about purchasing insurance for back-country adventures, visit:
  2. Tyler

    Tyler ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    Taylorsville, Utah
    Looks like that insurance is a state-run thing? What a great deal though; I'd gladly pay $12 for 5 years of insurance. I agree with that Sheriff as well; if you take risks, you need to be responsible for anything that happens, including the rescue. The only loophole is if you're in a situation you're trying to get out of and someone else calls in a rescue for you or without your consent. There could be a bit of grey area there.
    Deadeye008 likes this.
  3. Deadeye008

    Deadeye008 Hambone

    Northern Utah