Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Alexander: Search & rescue shouldn't cost arm-leg

Alexander: Search and rescue shouldn't cost arm and a leg

Adventurers should have insurance cover to meet the cost of any rescue operation they require, rather than expect the taxpayer to pick up the increasingly costly tab, United Future's civil defence spokesman Marc Alexander said today.

"The high costs of search and rescue operations should not be borne by taxpayers," Mr Alexander said.

"It's crazy that Kiwis are paying around a million dollars a year to pluck these adventurers from risky situations they have willingly placed themselves in.

"While some have suggested a bond for full-cost recovery, it would make more sense to have all such activities covered by mandatory insurance, and the premiums would be based on experience and skill as well as known risk factors," Mr Alexander said.

"Our country is well known as an adventurers' destination but that doesn't mean we should invite stupidity and have taxpayers picking up the tab. People have to be responsible for the decisions they make and accept the consequences of their choices.

"Responsible adventurers who are skilled and well equipped will not mind the small added costs of such insurance, but it will bring a much needed realisation of the potential risks and costs of help to those less experienced.

"After all, why should we Kiwis have to pay a nominal fee for an ambulance ride to hospital when we are sick, yet someone who decides to tramp off into the wilderness for a week armed with a sandwich and a corkscrew expects to get a multi-thousand dollar rescue involving countless volunteer hours for free?"

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news