Welcome to the LDS Scouter Blog. We hope to provide you with valuable information, share useful resources and maybe even improve some attitudes and Ward Scouting programs. The recommended way to use this blog is to start with the post, "Why I started this blog." Then browse through the post titles in the archive (found in the sidebar) for topics of interest.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Sobering Thought

Bishops and stake presidents, once your leaders are trained, do everything you can to ensure that they stay in their callings long enough to make a difference in the lives of the boys they serve. In 2004, LDS troops had one of the largest percentage of boys registered in the Boy Scouts of America. Unfortunately, we also had a much higher percentage of the fatalities that occurred during Scout activities. We have learned that there are three reasons for this: (1) lack of training, (2) lack of experience, and (3) failure to exercise good common sense. We plead with you as you prayerfully consider calling them to serve as leaders of our young men, to ensure that they are committed to receiving appropriate BSA training and that they serve with the youth for an extended time. - Charles Dahlquist in a 2005 address

I saw a discussion about this where someone posted a list of all the articles he could find on Scouting fatalities. Almost all of them were LDS scouts (I think a couple were unknown). Almost all of them involved inadequate supervision and/or no buddy.

We all think we will be fine. Our boys will be fine. Right up until something happens.

This is why it is so important to get trained, know the guidelines and follow them. The guidelines are there for your safety as well as the boys'. You do not want to be the one whose watch (or lack thereof) a serious accident occurs under. When I did the severe weather course online a few months back, I thought it was cheesy. How much of this do I really need to worry about? I wondered. At least one of the fatalities on the list I saw could have been prevented by following the severe weather guidelines. Ask yourself, What if that had been a boy under my watch?

Am I being over-dramatic? Maybe. Better safe than sorry? Definitely.

[Edit: Here is a letter from the First Presidency from earlier this year about safety precautions when planning activities. This would be a good thing for all youth and YSA leaders to keep on hand.]


Fishgutts said...

3 months ago we canceled a campout. It was raining and a heavy thunders storm. I wasn't scared of the rain. I was scared of bring a crispy critter.

Steve Cline said...

I was told at a training meeting by our local LDS-BSA liason that LDS account for 19% of registered scouts but 69% of fatalities

Eric the Half-bee said...

Thanks for posting that FP letter. To facilitate things, here are the Sweet Sixteen of BSA Safety.