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ERIC Number: ED377014
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Nov
Pages: 6
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Risk Management for Wilderness Programs.
Schimelpfenig, Tod
This paper discusses subjective hazards in wilderness activities and suggests means of assessing and managing related risks. Wilderness educators conveniently group hazards into objective and subjective ones. Objective hazards such as rockfall, moving water, and weather, while not necessarily predictable, are visible and understandable. Subjective hazards are harder to recognize, and represent errors in planning and leadership. Venturing into the wilderness with inadequate food or equipment or an unrealistic schedule is a planning mistake. Inappropriate or poorly understood goals and expectations, lack of flexibility, communication difficulties, inability to manage stress, distraction, indecision, and inaccurate estimation of participant abilities are errors in leadership and expedition behavior. Brief sections discuss the importance of guarding against complacency, faulty low estimates of risk, overconfidence, unrealistic goals, impatience and schedule pressures, peer pressure and competition, student misconceptions of staff infallibility, inaccurate information and assumptions, and personal and environmental distractions. Expedition leaders should also make a practice of assessing their participants for "high maintenance" people and survivors, and reading incident accounts about wilderness accidents. (SV)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A