Poll

Under what circumstances is it OK to go caving now?

Not at all.
With members of your household and trips are well within own ability.
So long as social distancing is respected and trips are well within own ability.
So long as social distancing is respected.
Any time, anywhere.

Author Topic: Is it OK to go caving?  (Read 18526 times)

Offline mikem

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #275 on: June 03, 2020, 11:11:55 pm »
All we can say for certain is that you definitely aren't improving your chances!

Offline owd git

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #276 on: June 03, 2020, 11:36:07 pm »
My turn for a rant! which twat suggests 2M. is a safe separation in a moderate breeze (towards you, yes YOU!)  from a symptomatic, very polite (cough!) oops. family member?. same question  for a stranger? person in an off licence queue? too many variables? answers  on a post card to Boris. sleep well. keep a lert (under your bed, they make great pets.) 
Hen racer? 2000 world hen racing champion

Offline mikem

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #277 on: June 03, 2020, 11:42:00 pm »
Many countries have a distance of 1m, some 3m - none of them are totally safe, just less risky than getting closer.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2020, 11:50:24 pm by mikem »

Online PeteHall

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #278 on: June 03, 2020, 11:52:13 pm »
Like with everything in life, a matter of assessing the risk and making a judgement on what you are comfortable with.

The difference is that this is a risk we can't see and feel is out of our control, where perhaps we feel in more control going for a bike ride with all the nutters driving too fast on the empty roads...
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Offline mikem

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #279 on: June 03, 2020, 11:59:13 pm »
That's okay they increasingly aren't empty any more. Generally the most dangerous things are those you are most complacent with.

Offline Russell Myers

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #280 on: June 04, 2020, 06:26:58 am »
My turn for a rant! which twat suggests 2M. is a safe separation in a moderate breeze (towards you, yes YOU!)  from a symptomatic, very polite (cough!) oops. family member?. same question  for a stranger? person in an off licence queue? too many variables? answers  on a post card to Boris. sleep well. keep a lert (under your bed, they make great pets.)
Here you go - it's referenced in this article; surprisingly, it arose from research in the 1930's before the effects of aerosols became known according to the article.   https://elemental.medium.com/how-covid-19-really-spreads-f9627bb93645
I've got one of those lerts, it kicks off now and again with things like falling boulders, rising flood water, crazy drivers on the road, dodgy pork pies, beers from particular parts of the country, low flying swans.............................
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Offline Russell Myers

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #281 on: June 04, 2020, 06:42:53 am »
To be fair, it's not just accepting the risks but accepting that you are increasing the risks to others too, whether they're caving with you at the time or not.

I shall refer to my opening post    ;)
Maybe I'm a selfish twat, but I reckon I put innocent people at risk every day (normally). Every time we get in our car, we put other road users at risk, this is massively increased if we are distracted (eg. using a phone, even hands free or dealing with fighting children), are tired (after a long caving trip, or just a late finish at work), or have had even one drink (look at the car park at any pub in a caving area , don't tell me everyone is on water!).
So we're all selfish twats most of the time and we all put others at much more risk than we would put rescuers at by going caving.
I have been in the risk assessment business for quite a few years and I don't think you are doing yourself justice calling yourself a "selfish twat" because you are not. I trained a lot of people in risk assessment over the years and was always keen to emphasise not overthinking this process because you end up staying in bed fearful to get up. For those into the cult film Donnie Darko you'll know what happens next. My point is, life is full of risks but you have to grasp it with both hands and crack on - enjoy it - it's over far too soon. Morning motivational rant over - crack on.
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Online maxf

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #282 on: June 04, 2020, 07:15:57 am »
Many countries have a distance of 1m, some 3m - none of them are totally safe, just less risky than getting closer.

Recently I travelled from the Uk to the Netherlands then to Sweden then onto Norway, the UK had the standard 2m, Netherlands 1.5m and Norway 1m, Sweden didn't specify a distance however its airports were just as deserted and closed as the rest I visited.

Online PeteHall

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #283 on: June 04, 2020, 07:49:10 am »
Maybe I'm a selfish twat, but I reckon I put innocent people at risk every day (normally). Every time we get in our car, we put other road users at risk, this is massively increased if we are distracted (eg. using a phone, even hands free or dealing with fighting children), are tired (after a long caving trip, or just a late finish at work), or have had even one drink (look at the car park at any pub in a caving area , don't tell me everyone is on water!).
So we're all selfish twats most of the time and we all put others at much more risk than we would put rescuers at by going caving.

I have been in the risk assessment business for quite a few years and I don't think you are doing yourself justice calling yourself a "selfish twat" because you are not. I trained a lot of people in risk assessment over the years and was always keen to emphasise not overthinking this process because you end up staying in bed fearful to get up. For those into the cult film Donnie Darko you'll know what happens next. My point is, life is full of risks but you have to grasp it with both hands and crack on - enjoy it - it's over far too soon. Morning motivational rant over - crack on.

I quite agree. I've also been risk assessing for work for a number of years, from site work (including work at height, confined spaces, welding and hot works) on power stations, railways, sewerage works, heavy industrial sites etc, to more recently assessing design risk under the CDM regs.

My point was to highlight the hypocrisy of a caver who drives using hands-free mobile, or who drives home tired, or who has a drink after a caving trip before driving home.

Completing a simple risk assessment will quickly demonstrate that all these activities are much higher risk (to yourself and others) than going on a simple caving trip during the current situation.
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Offline Duck ditch

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #284 on: June 04, 2020, 07:55:31 am »
To be honest I have stopped listening to the government briefs after the Gove/Cummings farce.  The monty python Parliament conga was the final straw.

The idea of standing 2m apart is to stop the virus spreading.  It seems sensible to me. Do 1m If you like. I don’t want to catch the virus and I don’t want to pass it on to somebody more vulnerable than me. That makes me a softy I suppose by maintaining the social distancing. Respect it please.

Caving is outdoors, it’s low risk surely virus catching wise.  You have have assessed the risks on a personal level and you are willing to go caving and enjoy the environment you love on a personal level.

Yesterday at a supermarket in Kendal I watched a man push past everybody in the queue (literally) waiting to go in.  He pushed past the young woman (literally) who was monitoring people going in. In the shop he deliberately invaded peoples space.  No doubt he was thinking I’m hard or a risk taker and he was determined to show this off. 

I don’t think I was alone in thinking that he was a selfish arrogant twat.

Online al

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #285 on: June 04, 2020, 08:17:10 am »
Caving is outdoors, it’s low risk surely virus catching wise.

Surely? Anything to back this up, or is it simply your opinion?

My opinion at the moment is that the government is releasing lockdown measures in response to pressures from business and against the opinions of most scientists. The result is that caving has become a legitimate form of exercise.

However, I doubt whether any part of government fully understands the risks regarding caving and covid-19 - any experts would surely exist within our caving community. And the government proves again and again that it can get things wrong - with impunity. So I personally wouldn't take any government communications regarding cave safety at face value.
Old ... but not old enough to know any better

Offline Duck ditch

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #286 on: June 04, 2020, 08:24:20 am »
Yes it’s my opinion.  I have never understood the indoor sport argument.  It is my opinion that caving is probably low risk. We all do our own risk assessment before going caving, we always have.
I agree with you over your assessment of government policy.

Offline mikem

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #287 on: June 04, 2020, 09:02:34 am »
Going into someone else's enclosed space is high risk (i.e. their home), or visiting areas with large numbers of people. So whilst some caves will be higher risk than others, as will caving with people who care for the sick, going caving per se is no more risky than many other things you have to do every day & safer than some.

Offline Duck ditch

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #288 on: June 04, 2020, 03:37:08 pm »
That’s right.  You have to respect the wishes of the most cautious in your group. I’m assuming people cave with there friends so that’s easy.  A squeeze might be to risky for some etc. Choose the cave Accordingly.

For instance I go walking with a friend who is a stickler for the 2m distance.  They where gloves for stiles and gates etc.   I might think this is over the top but I respect there point of view and obey the rules imposed.  It’s not hard to do. 

Offline pwhole

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #289 on: June 05, 2020, 12:39:07 pm »
My, it's gone quiet lately. I hope everyone's OK. But for those still fit and healthy, here's another useful article on what you might call 'immuno-over-confidence' ;)

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/jun/05/britons-immune-coronavirus-mistakes-covid-19-spread

Incidentally, just out of interest, has anyone outside the health profession had a test yet?

Offline skippy

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #290 on: June 05, 2020, 01:46:18 pm »
My mother has been  tested...Negative. There were 3 confirmed cases in her nursing home. All who tested positive made full recoveries despite all having medical issues.
A member of our club has also been tested(non medical personnel)..Negative.

Online PeteHall

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #291 on: June 05, 2020, 02:15:12 pm »
One of my colleagues got hospitalised with it a couple of months ago (confirmed by test). He's since made a full recovery.

One of our former long-term employees got it early on int he outbreak and died.

Not aware of anyone else I know getting a test, though i know a few people who think they had it, but couldn't get a test at the time...
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Offline Fishes

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #292 on: June 05, 2020, 05:45:54 pm »
If we put safety issues to one side there have been a large number of problems in some parts of the Peak District.

Large numbers have been lighting fires, using habituated areas as toilets, leaving large quantities of rubbish and in some cases there has been extensive damage to delicate sites.
One of the farmers I know has had more abuse from visitors in the last couple of weeks than she has had in 30 years of farming. Social distancing rules don't seem to apply to many of these visitors.

I'm not saying this involves any members of this forum but bear in mind that it means that a lot of locals do not feel well disposed to outsiders at the moment. I think we would be well advised to keep a low profile at the moment and that anyone who does visit the area should be extra mindful of the feelings of the locals. If we lose their good will then we risk losing access to some sites.

Online Fjell

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #293 on: June 05, 2020, 07:09:57 pm »
The Lakes did some sort of survey last week and for 70% it was their first visit. There were a lot of people who clearly behaved as they do at home, which was unfortunate.
I have a theory that many people who spend all their time in cities have a genuinely different mind set. I was once on Whernside and a perfectly normal-looking middle-aged couple were carefully placing their empty plastic bottles behind the wall and started wandering off. I was curious so I asked them casually if they had forgotten them. They replied there was no bin on the summit so thought they would leave them there for collection.
Although you would have thought those that were pooing in Haweswater really should have known better. If they were from anywhere near Manchester, even more so.

Offline bagpuss

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #294 on: June 05, 2020, 09:12:09 pm »
Can I ask a question without getting a virtually shouted at? Apologies if people consider it a daft question, please don't respond by telling me so.

I'm not caving at the moment and don't intend on doing so in the near future. I am in a club which is local to Mendip. The last/most recent update from Mid May from Mendip Cave Rescue didn't suggest people shouldn't cave, but gave quite a firm warning that caving right now isn't a good idea. We've obviously respected that and will continue to do so. I noted from their post that Swildons and Cuthberts are closed and am assuming CSCC caves will informally be the same? I wondered at what point will caving be considered okay to recommence on Mendip, from what I've seen on this thread and UKC there seems to be differing approaches between regions. At what stage do we consider lockdown being lifted,when people can go in each others houses it's okay to cave again?


Offline mikem

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #295 on: June 05, 2020, 09:57:40 pm »
Basically big caves are likely to be safer than small caves, even the larger Mendip caves tend to have small passages connecting them.

CSCC caves aren't actually all closed (except those in fairy caves quarry), as they are owned by lots of different people, but could be a challenge getting hold of a key.

Wookey hole is hoping to reopen on 4th July, as it is a one way route between entrances.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2020, 10:06:13 pm by mikem »

Online PeteHall

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #296 on: June 05, 2020, 10:13:08 pm »
I suspect that the Mendip Maffia will try to prevent access for as long as possible. How long local cavers will be prepared to go along with this remains to be seen.

As it is, I am aware of quite a number of Mendip cavers going underground at the moment. Some in caves without access restrictions, others with direct consent of landowners.

These numbers are only going to increase with time.

By comparison, you can hardly move on Mendip at the moment because of all the cyclists, mountain bikers and walkers.
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Offline Alex

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #297 on: June 05, 2020, 10:21:50 pm »
Bagpuss, obvious social distancing is a problem but if you live with a caver, or are willing to solo, there is little reason you should not be caving now. Just a case of finding a cave that is not locked, there which is difficult, but there must be some.
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Online alastairgott

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #298 on: June 05, 2020, 10:25:38 pm »
One of the farmers I know has had more abuse from visitors in the last couple of weeks than she has had in 30 years of farming. Social distancing rules don't seem to apply to many of these visitors.

Should we go digging with crowbars strapped to our backs just to ward of some of the (err, well, I could call them unwashed, but people in glasshouses ;) ) less thoughtful visitors...

Offline pwhole

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Re: Is it OK to go caving?
« Reply #299 on: June 05, 2020, 10:49:32 pm »
My local park was rammed last week, even though the weather has been great for weeks, and folks have been able to use it since lockdown with no problems - it's normally mostly empty, and the single litter bin is just fine. But last week it was so full it was pointless even attempting to sit there, and the litter left behind was astounding. Luckily the council do have people to sort that, but the point was that it was way over-capacity and so neither relaxing nor safe. It was as though it had been announced that the virus was 'over' and that we should all congregate in large groups as quickly as possible.

The R rate in the northwest and the southwest may have actually crept back up above 1 this week, which is potentially big trouble if they don't snuff it out as those calculations will have been made from datasets two weeks ago:

https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/covid-19-r-number-increasing-across-england-and-highest-in-north-west

 

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