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Old 06-30-2006   #11
DanOrion's Avatar
Indian Hills, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,448
In general, if you're renting a boat and know whats up, you probably brought your own helmet/PDF/skirt/booties. If it looks like a boater, and smells like a boater, demo a boat and paddle to that boater!

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Old 06-30-2006   #12
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 112
waivers work - there's a reason for them

if someone wants to do something stupid who i am i to stand in their way. what's next certifications on beforing renting guns, knives, chainsaws, ladders, paint, etc. (pick your dangerous tool from the local rent-a-shop) I can rent climbing shoes at many places that don't ask can you tie figure, do you know how the belay? Are certified in climbing at least 5.6?

C'mon there's plenty of dangerous products on the market to rent - kayaks are nothing special in that regard. i'm firm believer of letting people do what

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Old 06-30-2006   #13
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 25
Maybe what we need is not kayak certification, but a license to produce more humans.
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Old 06-30-2006   #14
pnw, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,404
BSOE, you let me know....I am waiting

Unordinary, win the prize
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Old 06-30-2006   #15
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,906
DanOrion said:
...helmet/PDF/skirt/booties. If it...smells like a boater, demo a boat and paddle to that boater!
Phewwww! This test would probably violate health and safety regulations for the retail sales profession!

Like BSOE, I've heard that waivers aren't worth anything in court but merely discourage lawsuits. Steve's got a good idea but it puts the retail sales folks in the position of judging whether someone is "viable" in a certain class of whitewater and potentially liable if they get killed.

Not sure what the solution is but its certainly NOT certification.

Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse
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Old 06-30-2006   #16
wood wanker
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 13
Judgment calls should be left up to individuals, just like on the slopes.
When idiots on the river put others in danger trying to rescue/recover is where I have a problem.
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Old 06-30-2006   #17
DanOrion's Avatar
Indian Hills, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,448
Thanks Andy,

I stand by my proposed olfactory certification standard. Recently, I walked into a shop in Missoula with my mesh bag 'o stank and they had me on the river with demo gear in minutes. Edge of the World: another plug, those guys hooked shit up! Too bad when I came back the boat, I dropped a "thank-you twelve pack" on the floor spraying beer across their carpet (Doh!)

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Old 06-30-2006   #18
Caspian's Avatar
Englewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1978
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 882
It's simply not true that waivers are worthless in court. Conversely, it's very true that poorly-drafted waivers are close to worthless in court. You get what you pay for. If you draft the waiver (or even if an attorney that doesn't have expertise in that kind of work does), it is likely to have a hole that can be exploited.

If releases and indemnities were generally worthless, then they would not be used every single day in the business world. Good ones work, and I have seen them stop multi-million-dollar suits dead in their shoes.

Also, any kind of licensing for kayakers is a horridly rotten idea. The retailer has the right to rent or not to rent to anyone at all (provided it's not a civil rights violation). The rental paperwork we used at NOC addressed the issue of experience, and the renter made legal representations to us about his/her abilities. Also, we only rented boats and demoed paddles. If you wanted to run the Nanny rather than Lake Fontana, you had to BYO skirt.
Join up, suckas.

"People demand freedom of speech to make up for the freedom of thought which they avoid."
- Soren Kierkegaard
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Old 06-30-2006   #19
WhiteLightning's Avatar
Eagle County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 928
Waivers don't always work. I think they help except for gross negligence. Gross negligence would be more like if the guy signs the waiver, and then says "I've never paddled before, where do I go?" and you tell him to chug a 12 pack and give him directions to Gore Canyon.

I think the problem with our sport that is different than with the climbing example, is that Joe Sixpack off the street knows that a fall off a cliff could kill him, but he doesn't know that the local class III run that looks like fluffy white waves from the highway isn't probably where he needs to go try to teach himself to kayak, preferably buzzed and by himself with no PFD.

If it were my shop, I would include a 1-pager that they sign that explains some of the local beginner runs, some whitewater hazards, what not to do, etc.

If they can't show you their own PFD and helmet, they are required to rent one too. Maybe some old stanky one is given to them free of charge, and they are told they must be using this one, or some other one at all times with the boat.

The problem may be though, the more knowledge you give them, the more you open yourself up to liability. "If he hadn't told me to paddle Upper C, my wife wouldn't have been attacked by the rabid beaver colony."
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Old 06-30-2006   #20
Sudbury, Ontario
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 20
Keep it simple

I am not a lawyer, but the more you tell the kayak renter the more crap you potentially put your self in. Just say "Please sign this wavier and your going to chatfield reservoir right?"

The cert card is a very bad idea. Can you imagine the Jeffco Ranger asking to see it before putting in at waterton canyon?

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