How to check safety records? - Mountain Buzz

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Old 01-24-2010   #1
Arvada, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 29
How to check safety records?

Anyone know if there is an online data base of all commercial accidents/deaths on or off the river? More specifically on the Ark? I'm wanting to work this summer and working for a commercial outfitter who has had no wrong doings would be a nice thing. Most if not all of the companies that I'm applying at say they have a perfect safety record, but I would like to see the proof. I understand that just because a company had a death doesn't mean they aren't safe, I'm looking for proof such as safety violation citations, tickets, deaths due to wrong doings, etc. A data base that has data on these would be very nice. Or is there a number to call?

Any help would be nice, thanks.

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Old 01-24-2010   #2
kayakfreakus's Avatar
Steamboat, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,027
Other than using AW's database:

American Whitewater - Safety

And calling the Better Business Bureau for BV I am not sure, I would think however if the companies were liable in the way you seem interested in they could not claim a perfect record, but maybe I am wrong.
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Old 01-24-2010   #3
lhowemt's Avatar
at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,603
There have been a few recent threads about folks wanting beta on commercials, esp those to NOT work with. You might search for those and get better information overall than just accident/death reports.

If you want proof of no violations (of any sort), you could ask for info on their insurance carrier, and contact them (maybe?). But just because some wahoo wanted to sue a company doesn't mean they did anything wrong or are not upstanding. Conversely, just because an insurance carrier pays/settles a claim, doesn't mean that too. (it often just means they think that's cheaper than the legal costs)
Living in Montana, boating in Idaho
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Old 01-25-2010   #4
mountains, Colorado
Paddling Since: '92
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 418
Go on this site:
Find Your Rafting Photos -
Look through the photos. Who's running too many people in a boat, who's letting people go down that shouldn't be going down. Jackets buckled. Etc.
Years ago the Durango rangers did this at the end of the season. It was hilarious as a few of the shadier owners tried to say they weren't breaking the regulations when there were 8x10 glossy prints.
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Old 01-26-2010   #5
Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 88
Contact the managing agency on the river you are interested in.

In the case of the Arkansas, contact the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA) at 719-539-7289. They maintain a database of all reportable accidents on the river.
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