The Corpus Callosum

Cool or Drool?

i-99ec3fdd217061d40f6163672f7ff78a-quadski.jpgThis is
cool.

i-8c81cf10396919f2630de5de9a24256d-quad-ski.jpegThis is
not.

Reading the Undercover Activist Blog, published by
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), I learned of
the development of a new type of solitude assault vehicle: the href="http://www.gibbstech.co.uk/mediacentre/quadski.php"
rel="tag">Quadski, by Gibbs Technologies.


Searching Google Image for “quadski” returns two types of results.
 The top image is from the href="http://www.disabledskiing.ca/national/eng_home.htm">Canadian
Association for Disabled Skiing.  It shows a person
using adaptive aids in order to ski.  That is cool.
 I’m not sure I’d want to do it, but for those who do, it’s
great.

The second illustration shows a device that converts from a jet-ski to
a four-wheel drive all-terrain vehicle.  I am a fun-loving
guy, and I don’t mean to rain on anyone’s parade.  But this
device poses an environmental threat. From href="http://peer.org/wordpress/?p=77">PEER:

The device is a particular threat to href="http://www.peer.org/chapters/ak.php">Alaska
where creeks and rivers limited the nemesis ATVs, but now this device
opens up hundreds of thousands of additional untrammeled lands to the
tracks and muddy paths of an ATV.

It is marketed to enthusiasts, but the company claims that it will have
a serious use as well:

“I know consumers will love the fun of
driving a Quadski on land one
minute and then head straight into the sea or river the next. But there
is a very serious side to Quadski as well: emergency services and aid
workers will be able to reach areas and people no two or four wheel
drive vehicle could reach.”

I should think that if a person is in an area that cannot be reached
except by Quadski, then a Quadski would be necessary to carry out the
rescue.  But if the person in need of rescue was able to get
to wherever he or she is without a Quadski, I should think that rescue
workers could get there also, without one.  So it would appear
that the only truly necessary use of a Quadski would be to rescue other
Quadski users.  I’m not sure that is a legitimate reason to
make them.

If a part of the world is so difficult to get to, that a person would
need to use such a device to get there, then most people who go there
are probably looking for serenity and solitude.  I say, if
someone needs serenity that badly, then the rest of us should respect
that, not go around making a racket, spewing pollution, and driving
away wildlife.

More info on noise pollution href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noise_pollution">here,
href="http://www.bluewaternetwork.org/news_stories/pl_8-6-04_nytimes.pdf">here,
and here.

Comments

  1. #1 outeast
    July 21, 2006

    But if the person in need of rescue was able to get to wherever he or she is without a Quadski, I should think that rescue workers could get there also, without one.

    For the sake of argument, how about people caught by, say, flooding – people who got in but then got trapped? Your statement depends upn an assumption that the terrain has not changed, doesn’t it?

    I don’t disagree with you in principle, I hasten to say! (I’d be willing to accept that in most instances other vehicles could do as well or better.)

    I am having a hard time fighting against the I-want-one reflex…

  2. #2 jimmychuckmcc
    July 21, 2006

    Anyone can cross a river in a rudimentary canoe. The question is do you want rescue workers to have to come to the aid of a seriously injured person by canoe?

  3. #3 Stumpy
    July 21, 2006

    My impression of snowmobilers, ATV off-roaders, motor-boaters and the rest is that they are ill-mannered tool-users, redneck Republican Hayseeds, corporate middle managers, and other icky types. If they crash and burn their mobile noise pollution generators (NPGs), then they should only be rescued after they have first signed a legally binding promise to give up their evil ways and enter voluntary re-education on the fragile beauty of peaceful silence. If they refuse to sign the promise, then they should be allowed to return to nature in a more physical sense, or else extradite themselves from their predicament by other means.

  4. #4 unknown
    October 18, 2007

    u all suck this product is a awsom invention

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