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Jogger wins fight with safari lodge over elephant attack

Jogger wins fight with safari lodge over elephant attack

Jun 13th, 2007, 05:49 AM
  #1  
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Jogger wins fight with safari lodge over elephant attack

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...cle1917958.ece

Wendy Martin, the lady that went jogging in the bush and was attacked by an elephant 6 years ago, has won a lawsuit in a Nairobi court.

Personally, I hope they appeal and that the ruling is overturned.

Here is a thread where Fodorites discussed this before. http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...t=0&searchText
sundowner is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 06:03 AM
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<<I just hope the case will send a very clear message to lodges that they must have procedures in place to ensure their guests’ safety,” she said.>>

Maybe they should just shoot all the animals so that jogging will be safe.
thit_cho is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 06:29 AM
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While at one lodge in the Sabi area I was shocked to see a woman running past us as we drove away from an elephant sighting. The ranger told me it was an employee at another lodge. We stopped because he was going to go back and make sure she wasn't charged but she took a fork about 75m before the elephant's location and (unknowingly) headed away from it so we continued on. The ranger told me the previous month they had been watching several lions at a kill by the side of the road when she appeared and ran along side the vehicle heading for the lions who were only a few meters in front of it (and hard to see until you were on top of them). He heard her coming at the last moment and stuck his arm out to block her and said "lion". She turned around and ran back the way she came without a word. I keep waiting to read about her demise.
tuckeg is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 06:38 AM
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I love this guy's response on the 'have your say' blog (he's also a brit):

"What are these elephants doing? Don't they know the law? And near where Prince William dated somebody too - absolutely disgusting. They should crack down on them - British half-wits must be protected at all costs."


And this one:

"If we keep rewarding stupidity, how on earth is the Human race to evolve?"
divewop is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 07:48 AM
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Sad... but did they really advertise runs with masaai warriors as an attraction? If so, wouldn't that be much, much more foolish than participating in one? I understood from reading Wendy's own words on her Web site long ago that the "advertising" constituted an invitation from a senior member of staff, but I don't know.... was there more - I always did wonder whether that marathon they do there was a good idea - kind of inviting the uninitiated to see the area as a place for running.

In the end if I had been the judge my ruling would have been based on whether I would have found the same if it had been a snake bite .... and what the difference is - legally. I's also have thought that Africans surely jog through the bush frequently, and kids play in it. And that people race cars and join the army to fight in foreign lands. As Ian Craig suggested, it is a frightening precedent that suggests all lodges and camps need to be fenced and very professionally managed - quite possibly the judge likes to holiday with Serena and thinks that is just fine. (And I have absolutely nothing against Serena, before I drag things off topic or offend someone). But at the same time, he should have seen it coming - having Prince William around is good publicity but then perhaps all of England follows, including its idea of liability.



(Since I mentioned legal matter, please be gentle, lawyers).
kimburu is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 08:18 AM
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Since the lodge apparently encouraged jogging, according to the article, I don't think it's so clear cut as to the jogger being at fault. Ruth is an avid runner, and when she inquired (not really all that seriously) about the possibility of going for a jog, it got a big laugh, followed by a "H--- no." After our first drive and game walk, it was quite clear why.

Jim
steeliejim is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 08:22 AM
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Some lodges encourage game walks, too, and I have been on several. But, I understand the inherent risks.
thit_cho is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 08:54 AM
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From Ms. Martin's website: "By winning a court case in Kenya, with its surrounding publicity, this will warn people that elephants are dangerous and can kill."

While I feel sorry for Ms. Martin (her injuries were horrifying), I'm stunned that a woman who lived in Kenya is apparently claiming that she had no idea that elephants are dangerous.

In situations like this there is usually plenty of blame to go around, but Ms. Martin doesn't seem to accept that any of the blame could be hers.
321go is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 11:02 AM
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"By winning a court case in Kenya, with its surrounding publicity, this will warn people that elephants are dangerous and can kill."

Who Knew????
Is Africa dangerous?

Gosh!
Thembi is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 11:32 AM
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Let's see when the next Britney Paris goes on safari...
nyama is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 11:38 AM
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It's okay because after the jail-thing i have god on my side
Thembi is offline  
Jun 13th, 2007, 11:50 AM
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Alleluia.
nyama is offline  
Jun 15th, 2007, 08:02 AM
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How on earth is money going to stop elephants from charging stupid runners in the future? She is making it impossible now for the camp to hire an askari to run ahead of her and clear away all elephants. I think it's a horrible tragedy that the lawsuit went this way and unfortunately it sets a dangerous precedent in Kenya that will impact the safari business as a whole.

I think the safari experience that you and I have had the privilege to enjoy will become a thing of the past. I am not sure if Il Ngwesi will be able to weather the storm but the funds will be paid by the Conservancy which is a separate legal entity from their other properties as they are not named in the lawsuit. However, the loss of this kind of funds to the Conservancy will put a serious dent in their conservation efforts which will mean the potential loss of rhino, Grevy zebra and other endangered animals. After all, it's thanks to Ian Craig and the Conservancy that there still are any rhino left at all. This is such a huge shame. My heart goes out to the Craig family and the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy
safarimama is offline  
Jun 15th, 2007, 08:07 AM
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Yes, but she got her cash, so everything is ok.
napamatt is offline  
Jun 16th, 2007, 12:12 AM
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Is this the same Lewa Wildlife Conservancy that has the annual half marathon through the park? The next one is next weekend.

http://www.lewa.org/lewa_marathon.php

The effort that goes into clearing the course of dangerous animals is quite extraordinary...it was shown on one the Game Ranger Diaries episodes not long back.

They press shots they took for the event involved going out and deliberately finding animals for a group of runners to run in front of. They deliberately stampeded a large herd of waterbuck so they could catch them running alongside the runners. One of these shots is here:

http://www.tusk.org/index.asp?pageid=44&page=44

If you offer running through a park as an activity - and promoting the 'danger' element - you are opening yourself to litigation if you do not take adequate measures to ensure the safety of your guests.

Personally, I think offering running alongside wildlife as essentially a gimmick is madness.

Tanky is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 02:32 AM
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Hmmm......so, the Lewa Downs marathon isn't something i should be registering for!!!

Tuckeg: someone went running in the sabi sands?

It is going to take me a couple of weeks to get back into running shape, anyways........
HariS is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 07:42 AM
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Hari,

Yes, the employee I mentioned was doing it every morning. That was last September. I also have some ranger friends who mountain bike in a different reserve but they are very knowledgeable and do it in a group. It is still very risky and they have had some close calls. They invited me along but they missed the time when I would have accepted by about 20 years.

George
tuckeg is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 07:50 AM
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Thanks, George....pretty risky, indeed!
HariS is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 10:29 AM
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"It is going to take me a couple of weeks to get back into running shape, anyways..."

Hari, why that? Too much chocolate-dipped strawberries in 'Disneyland'? ;-)
nyama is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 06:10 PM
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Nyama,

Too many quiches, boboties....lazy backside seated in the landcruiser and URI too long!!! and oh yes, two "cups of understanding" every evening. Something, i do once or twice a week at home on my evenings out......

Hari
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