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Publisher Description

Four previous papers reviewed 128 fatalities in school and youth group camps and excursions in Australia between 1960 and 2007 (Brookes, 2003a, 2003b, 2004, 2007). The series of papers resulted from an on-going project to develop as complete a record as possible of fatal Australian outdoor-education related incidents. The aim was, and remains, to ensure that lessons learned from particular incidents are recorded and accessible, and to build knowledge of fatality prevention by analysing patterns or common elements in the incidents. This paper records and examines 17 additional incidents, involving the deaths of 15 participants, two supervisors, and one non-participant. In one incident three teenagers from another group were also killed. The study criterion has been expanded to include incidents involving Australian groups outside Australia and university related incidents. The inclusion of incidents outside of Australia is intended to widen the scope of the study in a useful way. Many organisations have outdoor education programs or field trips that are not confined to Australia. Situations outside Australia can involve additional hazards unknown or uncommon in Australia. The inclusion of university-related incidents is intended to more meaningfully capture all youth related incidents. The original study (Brookes, 2003a, 2003b, 2004, 2007) distinguished organised recreation, study, or work in the outdoors for youth from that for adults. However, where does youth finish and adulthood begin? University groups have now been included in this study based on studies of adolescent development which report that brain maturation is not complete until the mid-twenties (Stanovich, 2006, p. 9). Including these incidents allows readers to decide for themselves their relevance - clearly supervising 20-somethings is not the same as supervising 15-year-olds.

Professional & Technical
1 January
Outdoor Council of Australia
The Gale Group, Inc., a Delaware corporation and an affiliate of Cengage Learning, Inc.

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