Well they found him. He thought his PLB was an avalanche beacon.

This is the ultimate proof that men do not read instructions.

In prior posts, (This is starting to become stupid and Alpine Rescue Team needs your help – PLB false alerts in Berthoud Pass (Colorado) area), I had talked about a PLB (personal locator beacon) that was repeatedly going off in the backcountry near Berthoud Pass. Members of the Rocky Mountain Rescue Group had been using special direction finding equipment to locate the owner of the PLB and see what was wrong. This had been going on for two months.

The reason why the PLB was going off? The owner had received the PLB as a gift. He thought the PLB was an avalanche beacon. Every time he went into the backcountry, he had turned his PLB on thinking he was protected if in an avalanche.

Personally, if I would’ve found the owner of the PLB, I would’ve instructed him on where to locate the beacon so the beacon would never be damaged, and he would never lose it. However, the great people of Rocky Mountain Rescue Group simply laughed at the situation. (People who volunteer to be part of a SAR team are unbelievable! Thank you SAR volunteers!)

I am not sure who is at fault for this. The retailer who sold the PLB did not either understanding what he or she was selling or did not understand what the person buying the gift wanted. The person buying the gift obviously did not understand what they were attempting to purchase. The person who used it never had taken an avalanche course, never had done a study on avalanches, and had never tested the beacon to see if he knew how to use it. I guess all three people share some of the responsibility.

Why would you take a person like this out in the backcountry? Who are this guy’s friends, they are also not real bright if they did not check their buddy’s equipment.

If you are going to go out in the backcountry where you are at risk for avalanches you must do several things:

1. Carry a beacon, probe, and shovel.
2. Know how to use your beacon, probe and shovel.
3. Make sure all the other people going out with you have a beacon probe and shovel.
4. Know how to use the other beacon’s probes and shovels that your friends have with them.
5. You have taken an avalanche course.

If you do not do these five things, it is not who is the biggest !d!@t, you will just be in a group of them. The real issue will be what kind of ceremony you want for your funeral.

Furthermore, it is pretty obvious that this guy doesn’t read the news media or anything else with the amount of attention it got in Colorado.

See Rescue group finds ignorant owner who triggered false alarms.

For prior articles about this is that in see Alpine Rescue Team needs your help – PLB false alerts in Berthoud Pass (Colorado) area and This is starting to become stupid

See Rescue group finds ignorant owner who triggered false alarms

What do you think? Leave a comment.
Copyright 2010 Recreation Law (720) Edit Law, Recreaton.Law@Gmail.com
Keywords: outdoor law, recreation law, outdoor recreation law, adventure travel law, PLB, SAR Personal Locator Beacon, Avalanche Beacon, Search and Rescue, Rocky Mountain Rescue Group,


One Comment on “Well they found him. He thought his PLB was an avalanche beacon.”

  1. He could have been reading the news. He had an “avalanche beacon”, so he would not have realized that the PLB news was about him.

    I'm sure he is fully educated now.

    And yes, the SAR people are amazing. Regardless of the amount of effort, they are always happy to find out that someone is safe, regardless of how clueless they are. An inspiration to all of us.


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