German tourist dies while taking a “flying selfie” at Machu Picchu in Peru

Jul 1, 2016

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

German tourist dies while taking a “flying selfie” at Machu Picchu in Peru

Jul 1, 2016

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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They say that two things are certain in life; Death and taxes. Taxes we can’t do anything about, but I don’t think anybody until now realised just how many of those entirely preventable deaths could be attributed to shooting selfies.

You just can’t seem to go very long these days without hearing about another one. Some countries seem to be attempting to do something about this, and it would probably be wise for other countries to follow their lead.

In this latest event, 51 year old German tourist Oliver Park was alleged to have been trying to take a selfie while jumping to make it appear as if he was flying. As one might expect, he lost his footing, which unfortunately led to him falling off a cliff.

The accident happened on June 29th while visiting the Machu Picchu ruins in the Peruvian Andes, one of the Seven New Wonders of the World, which receives over a million visitors a year.

The BBC reports that having ignored safety signs and warnings from wardens at the tourist spot, he ventured into a restricted area close to the edge of a cliff and then disappeared. After rescuers found the body, it was taken to a local police station, and from there to a morgue in the city of Cusco.

Every time I hear stories such as these I’m torn.

One part of me is sad that somebody has needlessly died, that their friends and family are now going through the anguish of having lost somebody they love dearly.

The other part of me wants to scream, wondering what the hell is wrong with people that they’d want to put their lives at risk like this. For what? A handful of likes? Seriously, people, stop getting yourselves killed over a photo. It’s really not worth it, either to you or to those you leave behind.

By all means, go ahead and take all the selfies you want, enjoy it, but please, do it safely!

[BBC via IBTimes]

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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11 responses to “German tourist dies while taking a “flying selfie” at Machu Picchu in Peru”

  1. Alexander Gentzel Avatar
    Alexander Gentzel

    Du bist aber noch in Köln oder Adrian?! ??

  2. Mark Hoffman Avatar
    Mark Hoffman

    Another Darwin Award is bestowed.

  3. Mike Nicholson Avatar
    Mike Nicholson

    Another Darwin Award winner.

  4. Kasper Solberg Avatar
    Kasper Solberg

    Yesterday I posted a photo on Instagram from a pretty cool, but pretty risky location in Faroe Islands. I felt secure, but a unskilled tourist would definetely slip and fall. Immedately people asked about the location of the shoot. For the safety of others I refused to give that information. Was it the right thing to to, or should I not have posted the photo at all?

    1. Justin Avatar
      Justin

      You probably shouldn’t have taken the photo or posted it. Even if you’re experienced a risky location can cause death if you make a tiny mistake.

      1. Kasper Solberg Avatar
        Kasper Solberg

        Sounds reasonable. In this instance though, it probably wouldn’t kill anyone, but a broken leg and no telephone connection would be bad enough ?

        1. Justin Avatar
          Justin

          That doesn’t sound too bad and if someone knew you were there you could be rescued when you didn’t come back by a certain time. Some people take crazy risks for photos not thinking about the consequences.

  5. Marc Pujol Avatar
    Marc Pujol

    Photoshoping it is easier.

  6. Daniel Zielinski Avatar
    Daniel Zielinski

    Veronica Arrieta

    1. Veronica Arrieta Avatar
      Veronica Arrieta
  7. Ras Kta Avatar
    Ras Kta

    I always bring a riggers belt, a descender/ascender (+foot tape or webbing ladder) with a couple meters of semi-static rope when i know i might be doing stupid things on a photo trip.
    It has saved my ass a couple times before.
    It’s more likely that i took more risks because i knew i was completely safe. I’m sure i would be way more prudent if i didn’t have that lifeline when i mess around.

    My SO worries (and complains) regardless, but appreciates knowing that i might come back scratched but still in one piece.