Kims and Their Doomed Trip
SAR Effort: Bungled or Undermined?
and Official Reports Archive
and Kati Kim’s negligence was primarily responsible
for the tragedy that unfolded between Nov. 25 and Dec. 6,
2006. The failure of two officials, Sara Rubrecht and Jason
Stanton, to order the search of the road where the Kims were
stranded, contributed to Mr. Kim’s death.
other factors cited by the media and others –
inadequate signs and maps, credit card privacy rules, cellular
location data – were tangential or irrelevant.
management of the search for the Kim family highlighted
flaws in the search and rescue process that should be
addressed, but was a minor factor in the events of Nov.
gaps and contradictions remain in Mrs. Kim’s
accounting of events, particularly on Nov. 25. I do not
believe she was completely forthcoming in her statements to
education about the dangers of overreliance on technology,
and on the need to plan trips carefully and respect the
hazardous nature of wilderness travel, is the best means of
preventing similar tragedies.
reject pleas to exempt any participants from scrutiny, or
to “let bygones be bygones.” Heavy media coverage
made the Kim tragedy a public event, inspiring widespread
attention and ongoing government involvement. All factors,
actions and participants must be thoroughly analyzed to insure
that any responses to the events of Nov. 25-Dec. 6 are
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