Man dies on Everest, no one helps




 
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Man dies on Everest, no one helps
 
May 25th, 2006  
PJ24
 
 

Topic: Man dies on Everest, no one helps


Man dies on Everest, no one helps
Everest Pioneer Blasts Climbers Who Left Dying Man

Quote:
The climbing world is facing tough criticism after dozens of mountaineers are thought to have passed by a dying climber struggling to survive as he descended from the summit of Mount Everest last week.

The British climber, 34-year-old David Sharp, had climbed the mountain solo and was on his way down from the summit.

More than 40 climbers are thought to have seen him as he lay dying, but almost all passed him by.

He was later found dead in an ice cave, apparently from oxygen deficiency.
I've done quite a few rescues on mtns. mostly climbers that a) weren't proficient enough to climb the mtn they were on or b) were irresponsible.

I think the criticism (concerning a rescue) on this is a little harsh given the conditions you encounter on a mountain, esp. at 29K feet (almost 9K meters). When you're that high, you're dying. Doesn't matter how healthy you are or how much oxygen you have, your body is shutting down and you are dying. How you proceed and handle, how well prepared for it you are (if you spent enough time acclimating, etc) and a lot of luck is whether or not you'll survive.

Where this man was, the altitude he was at, he was hypoix, dehydrated and undernourished. He would not have had the strength to help himself down with another climber, or even four or five climbers. They are in better condition, but still hypoix, dehydrated and undernourished as well, they would not have had the strength or the skill to get him back down. Most climbers, esp. recreational ones, are not and an attempt would only leave more dead climbers.

I don't know what the skill level of the climbers was, but out of 40 people, surely there was a group that could have at least tried, sat with him, took down his last wishes and words for his family, etc. Just comforted him before they headed back down.

I do think, and have always though, that anyone who finds an injured or debilitated climber that is dying and most likely going to die, is a low life for continuing his summit. This isn't the firs time this has happened, and sadly, it's pretty common.

The climber that died was also irresponsible for a) climbing alone and b) not bringing enough oxygen. So it really isn't fair to blame his death on others.

They are guilty of callousness and lack of empathy for their fellow man in the face of personal desires, but only he is guilty of his death.


May 26th, 2006  
bulldogg
 
 
I've never done a mountain rescue but have climbed mountains in Colorado around Ouray, Telluride and Gunnison. My experience has been that it is very common for these "professional" and semi-pro climbers to be self-centered selfish bastards who wouldn't think twice about leaving someone on the trail at an altitude or place that they COULD make a difference by stopping to help. The locals and guys just doing it for kicks will go out of their way to help someone. And you're absolutely right PJ that this happens alot, far too often for a species that is supposed to be seperated from the rest of the animals by supposedly posessing empathy.

The solo climber was foolish and he took his life in his hands when he chose to climb solo. I have done solo ascents and I was well aware of the risk I was taking and went so far as to leave a will as it was a very real possibility even on a 14K hill in the Rockies, let alone Everest.

What came of the distress call Inglis supposedly sent? Is this being ignored by the media to draw attention to the story? Webster's comments in the article are on the mark but there are some items being left out of the story.
May 26th, 2006  
ASTRALdragon
 
 
Personally, I think the dude deserved it (harsh I know). Have you guys noticed that more and more people are climbing Everest in the last couple of years? It's becoming so commercialized now to brag that "I reached the top of Everest." Half of the people that climb it do it with the help of the local Sherpas too, so I don't know what they really "accomplished." Seems more like a guided tour. And here we have the moron who decides that his city life was too boring and now he's going to brave the highest peak in the world solo! What could you possibly compare with in urban life that compares to roughing it and climbing the highest freakin mountain in the world?! Just the fact that there were other hikers going up the mountain gives to the fact that too many people are turning this Everest deal into a commercial event. It's a big ass mountain, what's the chance that you're going to encounter "other hikers"? Unless, of course, the whole freakin mountain was littered with it and has lost its appeal and difficulty. Didn't a 86-year old guy and a 14-year old kid recently climb and reach the top of Everest also? Ahh people these days...
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Man dies on Everest, no one helps
May 26th, 2006  
Ted
 
 
You are right Astral that climbing is suddenly a sport you have to do. During the summer months an estimate 30 people die per month in the Alps. They climb where they are not suppossed to and start a rock avalanche killing themselves and their partners. Many climb up the Matterhorn or Mont Blanc with nothing more then sandals and shorts. The fact that the whether can change almost in an instance isn't known to them.
This does not dissmiss the fact that the other climbers should have offered some relief to this dying sod. I'll never forget and interview with a famous Dutch climber on the Mount Everest. He sat in his tent while you heard a climber yell for help. The interviewer urged him to go out, but he refused. There was a blizzard, not enough food and the guy was probably hypothermic anyway. While the interviewer was crying and urging him you could hear the sreams die away. The next morning they found the dead climber less the 50 yards from his tent..... That was a really intense interview!
May 26th, 2006  
sunb!
 
 
It is not fair to blame his death on others but it is fair to blame the people passing him by for not trying to help, or giving him some attention! If climbing that piece of rock is so important for them that walk by someone dying, then I am not impressed by their achievements at all!
May 26th, 2006  
PJ24
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASTRALdragon
Personally, I think the dude deserved it (harsh I know). Have you guys noticed that more and more people are climbing Everest in the last couple of years? It's becoming so commercialized now to brag that "I reached the top of Everest." Half of the people that climb it do it with the help of the local Sherpas too, so I don't know what they really "accomplished." Seems more like a guided tour. And here we have the moron who decides that his city life was too boring and now he's going to brave the highest peak in the world solo! What could you possibly compare with in urban life that compares to roughing it and climbing the highest freakin mountain in the world?! Just the fact that there were other hikers going up the mountain gives to the fact that too many people are turning this Everest deal into a commercial event. It's a big ass mountain, what's the chance that you're going to encounter "other hikers"? Unless, of course, the whole freakin mountain was littered with it and has lost its appeal and difficulty. Didn't a 86-year old guy and a 14-year old kid recently climb and reach the top of Everest also? Ahh people these days...
The 15 year old was a Sherpa, and despite her age, a very experience climber.

The oldest to scale Everest were in their 50s.

There's nothing commercial about dying, sherpa or not, "easy" route or not, O2 or not you only have a certain window to reach the summit and descend before you die. Period.

As for encountering other hikers, you obviously aren't familiar with the mtn at all there are several routes, most sherpa guided climbs take the same one or two routes, so it's pretty common to run in to people, esp at the peak of climbing season.

People die on Everest every year, deaths are usually into the triple digits. That doesn't sound very commercial to me.

On Everest, or any mtn for that matter, regardless of guides, routes and numbers of attempting climbers, it is very dangerous and very difficult, and people die because they think JUST like you do.


May 26th, 2006  
ASTRALdragon
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PJ24
The 15 year old was a Sherpa, and despite her age, a very experience climber.

The oldest to scale Everest were in their 50s.

There's nothing commercial about dying, sherpa or not, "easy" route or not, O2 or not you only have a certain window to reach the summit and descend before you die. Period.

As for encountering other hikers, you obviously aren't familiar with the mtn at all there are several routes, most sherpa guided climbs take the same one or two routes, so it's pretty common to run in to people, esp at the peak of climbing season.

People die on Everest every year, deaths are usually into the triple digits. That doesn't sound very commercial to me.

On Everest, or any mtn for that matter, regardless of guides, routes and numbers of attempting climbers, it is very dangerous and very difficult, and people die because they think JUST like you do.


The oldest person to climb Everest was actually 70 years old, and there was two of them too.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timelin..._Mount_Everest

My point was not that it was death that was being commercialized, it was the concept of climbing the tallest mountain in the world. True, I do not know a lot about mountain climbing or rescues or whatever. I'm only 23 years old, I don't even know a lot about life! I'm just giving my opinion on why people should now be attempting these stunts against the tallest mountain in the world in the most horrid conditions/weather. I recently went skydiving about 2 months ago, which I have never done before, but you can probably guess that I didn't try anything outrageous while doing it. I took every precaution and admit that I was quite a little scared (what happens if both chutes don't deploy and the instructor doesn't know what to do?!!). I'm not understanding what you mean when you said peopel die because they think like me... I'm against unsafe and unguided mountain climbing! Take a another look at my link again and tell me Everest still has it's appeal as the tallest mountain in the world; people are freakin scaling it left and right maybe just to break a few world records!

Edit: My point is the last statement...
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060526/...on_everest_lh1
May 26th, 2006  
MontyB
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunb!
It is not fair to blame his death on others but it is fair to blame the people passing him by for not trying to help, or giving him some attention! If climbing that piece of rock is so important for them that walk by someone dying, then I am not impressed by their achievements at all!
I agree completely, I think Hillary's statement
Quote:
"He's a human being, and we would regard it as our duty to get him back to safety."
In another interview, Hillary said many climbers today are more concerned about scaling peaks than they are about human life.

is pretty damn accurate and I would have thought Inglis would have exhibited a different attitude given that he seemed quite happy that people were prepared to risk their lives to save his sorry arse back in 1982.
May 26th, 2006  
PJ24
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASTRALdragon
Take a another look at my link again and tell me Everest still has it's appeal as the tallest mountain in the world; people are freakin scaling it left and right maybe just to break a few world records!

Edit: My point is the last statement...
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060526/...on_everest_lh1
Scaling it left and right, huh? Less than 2K in 53 years isn't really left and right. In fact, most people that try don't make it, and many don't make it back down at all.

Your original comments indicated that you assumed climbing Everest was no real feat because it has been accomplished so many times. That's why I said it is thinking like that that gets people killed. Your last comment again indicates it's no big deal to scale Everest because others have already done it.

The reason there are more today than yesterday has a lot to do with equipment, cheaper fees, travel is more easily available, guides have made a business of it and more interest in the sport itself, but it has to do with it being easy. Most of the deaths don't get press time, and the injuries, lost appendages to frost bite, etc. never do.

Everest, being the tallest mtn in the world, DOES have an appeal. It is certainly not the toughest climb, there are others that are more difficult, but it isn't something just anyone can do, either. It is a very formidable mountain and this is what happens when it ISN'T given the respect it deserves.

We have the same problem with Denali (Mt. McKinley) in Alaska. Idiots that assume it's "no biggie" because it has been done before.

If I have misunderstood your intent, let me know.

May 27th, 2006  
phoenix80
 
 
What a cruel world