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 Post subject: stupidity
Unread postPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2005 7:58 am 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Seems that many overseas and even local visitors are not aware that the Kruger is not zoo. Animals and many extremely dangerous ones roam this piece of paradise freely, even in the camps.

I have once experienced at Lower Sabie a very dangerous situation where a lioness came into the tourist camp via entry through the staff village and caused all sorts of havoc before being darted by a vet.

My opinion is that when somebody is breaking a park rule i.e. leaving his/her vehicle at any undesignated place or feeding hyenas at the camp fence or littering or making noise in the camps at night etc. that they should be reported immediately.

Rules as laid down by the park authority, are there to protect visitors and to make everybody's stay an enjoyable one. Breaking of these rules will soon result in something similar as what had happened to 4x4 driving on South African beaches. Then not only will the perpetrator be penalized but all of us adhering to the rules.

There will be nothing worse than to see a wild dog pup suffocating on a plastic bag or more leopards that get shot because people feed them to get better pics or not be able to leave your vehicle on the big bridges crossing the Letaba and Olifants rivers because some idiot thought it was not serious to cross the line marked on the bridge to photograph an elephant on the end of it. Remember that no human can outrun any of the big five and the consequences of a wild animal and a human meeting is more than often fatal.

When you enter the Kruger park you enter a wild animal's domain. Respect that or stay at home, else you might get yourself, someone or something else killed.


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Unread postPosted: Fri May 13, 2005 3:05 pm 
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Just to add to the posts on this thread some messages found on another website

Message
I am a regular visitor to the Kruger National Park. On Sunday 23/01/2005 my husband and I was visiting Kruger and on our way home on the road from Mopani to Phalaborwa, about 2km from Mopani to Phalaborwa, about 2km from the T-junction, we saw a red Volkswagen Polo, registration RLY913GP and the driver was out of his vehicle about 10 metres from an elephant, taking photos.
When my husband stopped next to him and told him that the rules of Kruger don't allow people to get out of their cars, the tourist was quite upset and said that he don't like our attitudes.
My husband told him that if the elephant trampled their car, the animal will be shot.
It is always the animal who is getting the blame.
The guy was upset and said that my husband must relax.
We could feel that tension was building up and decided to report the guy to the traffic officer if we find him next to the road as the person also exceeding the speed limit of 50km per hour.
We did not have a camera with us to take any photos.
Unfortunately we did not see the traffic officer and the guy went out at Phalaborwa Gate with only a big attitude.
Also on 3/01/2005 near Sable Dam we found two guys in a white Mercedes Benz convertible, driving along with the roof down.
They know this is not allowed because when you pay at the Gate the rules are printed out in black and white.
Why not adhere to it.

Sunset Dam - which was filled with hippos and crocs - on Sunday, Feb. 13 shortly before 11 a.m.
The white vehicle was on one side of our car and the blue vehicle (which nearly drove into the water.
One female occupant of the white vehicle actually walked at least 50 metres away from the vehicle, behind some bushes, to do what, I do not know.
An hour earlier on the H4-1 just north of Nkuhlu the man got out and walked at least 15 meters to try and photograph some kudu. (See in photo gallery above).
We saw the vehicle numerous times that morning - always with the doors wide open.
People like this should be banned from Kruger permanently. Sincerely, Melissa Thompson, Maputo, Mozambique


Displaying a firearm
While driving on the S50 along the Shingwedzi River on Christmas Day we noticed a man standing alongside his car.
We stopped and reminded him of the Park's regulations forbidding him to exit his vehicle outside camp or specifically marked boundaries.
We then noticed a pistol on his hip, stuck in his belt.
The weapon was not in a holster as required by law, let alone sealed as required by SANParks regulations. We decided not to confront him further and took down his license number and drove to Shingwedzi camp to report him to the Authorities.
He drove behind us the whole way and turned off at the S135 towards the H1-7 main road.
At the camp we spoke to a man dressed in a green warden uniform.
He asked us if the person drove a blue Ford Laser.
We confirmed this and he said he knew the person as he noticed him in the camp earlier that day.
He said he would drive to the S135 road to investigate the matter.
A few hours later we saw the SANParks official in camp and asked him whether he confronted the man.
He said that he could not find him and no telephone or radio contact could be established with Punda Maria Gate to alert gate officials there to be on the lookout for him.

Displaying a firearm: Kruger's response
It is certainly distressing as KNP Management to hear that people are directly contravening the laws regarding firearms in the KNP and that they are still getting out of their vehicles, in spite of the threat of increased fines and zero tolerance from our Protection Services and Ranger Corps if they are seen doing these offenses.
We would like to applaud the writer for doing the right thing and not confronting the offending person as this probably prevented a distasteful situation.
We would also like to commend the writer for doing the right thing and reporting the offence to the correct authorities - whom we will assume was a member of the Protection Services or a Ranger.

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Unread postPosted: Sun May 15, 2005 11:53 am 
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People do not read notices.
Especially if they are in a language that they do not understand.
Perhaps the office staff when doing the admittance paper work for what is clearly a foreign tourist could ascertain their home language and hand them a succinctly worded warning about the rules.
I am sure that the security guards that lift the booms at entrance gate could also verbally inform visitors of at least the rule to stay in their vehicles.
At the moment all they do is check paperwork and hand out refuse bags.
It would appear that the main rule that is transgressed is that people do not know of the danger of leaving their vehicle.

In the old days if there was a major sighting where a lot of vehicles were present there was always an honorary ranger around to control things.
Could we not possible inveigle the jeep jockeys into performing a policing role and maybe it would enhance their image as far as a lot of us are concerned.
We were recently at a leopard sighting on the little dirt loop just before Nkhulu picnic site and people were wandering around as if they were out on a Sunday stroll.
There were two jeep jockeys present at this particular debacle and neither of them said a word.
If we have to put up with them in the park then maybe they could be put to some good use.

I think that certain people who are long time park goers and fairly knowledgeable should be given a sticker of some sort or a card that entitles them to speak to transgressors with a little authority.
Whenever we have tried to speak to a tourist who is breaking the rules they have been arrogant and refused to listen - in one instance it turned very abusive.

I am sure that many of us would be only to happy to play a pro-active role in trying to educate and inform the public if we were allowed to do so.
Many years ago I reported someone at a gate for stealing tortoises - I was told that unless I was prepared to come up to Nelspruit for the court hearing I should not bother to press charges.
This particular couple were literally driving along and every time they came across a tortoise on or next to the road they put it in the back of their bakkie.
When we reported them at the gate we were met with such a barrage of bureaucratic red tape that we declined to sign the official statement.

We have been going to the Park for in excess of 20 years and have watched the behaviour deteriorate to an all time low.
The wrong people are going to Kruger it would appear for the wrong reasons!

_________________
NO BAIL - JAIL AND NO TRADE IN RHINO HORN EVER!
NO TO BUILDING OF HOTELS IN THE KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
26.09.14 - 03.10.14 Burchells Bush Lodge
03.10.14 - 10.10.14 Ngwenya Lodge
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Unread postPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 2:37 pm 
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Dear Bushman and Penny

Thank you so much for your obvious loyalty.
Believe me, it means a great deal to myself and my colleagues to hear that our visitors are this loyal.
The rules and regulations of the KNP are backed by the law and anyone caught transgressing them can receive fines or even be arrested, depending on the transgression.
Similar to just about any other law in South Africa, a normal legal proceeding can be initiated if you do see someone transgressing the law.
If you do see someone transgressing the law, you can report the incident to either the local ranger or to the security services.
Like any other charge (laid at a police station, for example) you would need to provide evidence and probably a sworn statement.
Alternatively, you can supply us with a photograph and the "full" details of the transgression (date, time, place etc).
But, bear in mind, if the accused transgressor chooses to appear in Court to fight the charges (SA law says you are innocent until proven guilty), you might be called to act as witness for the state.
This is something very few people are willing to do and - in my humble opinion (and not necessarily the view of the organization) - probably one of the reasons for South Africa's crime situation.
A course in law enforcement for "loyal" park visitors might seem like a good idea (and thank you for voicing it) and it is in principle, but the following might be further points to consider:
* Who pays for this? (remember, we already have a security department who, albeit thin on the ground, are already tasked to perform this task)
* How do we choose the candidates?
* Where do we get the money to pay for the selection process?
* When a person from outside the organisation is given law enforcement powers, how do we know whether this person is misusing it and what recourse do we have to discipline that person? - he or she can quite legitimately walk away and we have no power over them
* After the course, you become a sworn-in SA "Peace Officer" with all its implications.
Remember, you are also accountable and can be sued for things like wrongful arrest etc (ask any SAPS member about this - it is a very unpleasant situation to be in).

From a PR point of view, the Kruger Krazies page of the Kruger Park Times and the Getaway "Mug of the Month" page are worthy methods of tackling these transgressors as it not only serves as a warning - no one wants to receive those "labels" - but our investigators have also followed up on most (if not all) the photographs with "friendly letters".

My advice for members of the public is as follows:
* Take photographs and send them to us, with all the details;
* Report the behaviour to the ranger/security staff;
* Do NOT try and confront the person yourself (we have had situations where even Honorary Rangers have been attacked);

I hope this helps.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 3:04 pm 
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Hi Penny

I have answered some of your other questions on another thread and, to repeat what I said on the other thread, we really appreciate your obvious loyalty and concern in this matter.
But just a few comments here from our point of view, you say you got lip from someone who you tried to confront.
This is the treatment that I and my colleagues have to put up with every day!
Even rangers get apathetic, even aggressive behaviour towards them.
But we vow to continue as, not only is it written in our Code of Conduct, but because we love this place.
You also mentioned what happened to you with the tortoises.
I am afraid this is a reality - in South Africa you are innocent until proven guilty - and thus people who report crimes should be aware that they would need to go further with them.
Just imagine the chaos in a world where anyone could report anything about anyone else (whether it was true or not) and that person would be punished without fair trial?
I am not doubting for an instant what you saw - and wanted to report - wasn't perhaps true but it is a real pity that you didn't proceed with the "red tape" and helped us to put an environmental criminal behind bars!

Regarding the rules in other languages, if you read the latest entrance permit (introduced last year) you will see "international" pictures of the regulations which we have introduced to try and make it as multilingual as possible.
Incidentally, in my experience, every single tourist that I have confronted has, firstly, known the rules and, secondly, known that he/she was doing something wrong.
It takes a LOT of self control for a hot blooded male South African like me to remain calm when the tourist I have just confronted speeding, littering or getting out of his vehicle tells me to *&%$ off - I assure you.
Most have been South Africans (by the way!).

Regarding the signposts, I understand the tourism department is working on this.

Thank you for your posts and obvious loyalty. It does not go unnoticed.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 8:33 am 
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Bushmad wrote:
You say that this happens, depending on the severity of the situation, a "friendly letter" is not always the right action to take. If someone is photgraphed stealing tortoises or behaving very badly then fines and bans should be on the cards.


Hi Bushmad

Sorry. My sense of humour got the better of me on this one.
The "friendly letter" was indeed a fine. (That will teach me to be clear and explicit on the forum!).

But, many are not followed up with the "friendly letter" because in some photographs you cannot see details clearly and - although well meant - the visitor often doesn't supply the correct or complete information.
This is why it is vital for the complainant to approach the law enforcement official in person, so that all these details can be included.
It is also vital that people do go forward with the charges and act as witnesses too.
Even although our rangers do regular patrols and the security staff are often seen on the roads (they drive Condors with blue lights on the roof), we can't be everywhere at once!

You raise another good point.
There is nothing worse than - while trying to enjoy your holiday - you have to play "policeman".
There is also another point to ponder here - would you feel welcome in a place where there are notices/signs all over the place that say "Don't do this" , "Don't do that" etc?

I reckon (again not necessarily the opinion of the organisation) the following:
There are indeed (basically) two types of people who come to the KNP.
Those who have visited for years, knowing and respecting the rules and who enjoy the KNP for what it is (like you and Penny and others say in previous posts).
Then there are the "new" visitors who might not necessarily know or understand the old "traditions" of the KNP, but who are keen to experience the national park (which, by the way, belongs to ALL South Africans).
I would sincerely welcome any initiative taken by groups of the former (possibly Honorary Rangers???) to try and educate the latter.
Now here is a challenge - if you see a family or group of the latter who are perhaps battling with the whole idea of "KNP Culture", perhaps go up to them and tell them of your good, positive experiences and why you come to the Kruger?
That way, the "culture" is passed on. After all, how was it passed on in previous generations?

Speaking of the exceptions to the former group not breaking the rules:
One of the Mugs of the Month in Getaway edition of August 2004 wrote a letter in his defence, stating that he had come to Kruger for the last 20/30/40 years (I hear that statement so often, its all a bit of a blur) and had always followed the rules.
According to him, he was out of his vehicle because he says he saw a baby elephant slipping down an embankment and wanted to make sure the elephant was ok.
Baby elephants - which although they might be young, are pretty resilient - have been slipping down embankments for thousands of years and the species has survived!

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Thu May 19, 2005 9:55 am 
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Hi David

Although we certainly suggest the fines, they have to be approved in the eyes of the law. The latest fines were approved by the White River Magistrate on 2004/9/30. Although it will help us considerably, the Magistrate might not be willing to increase the fines to that level.

While waiting for your employment application to be processed, have you joined the Honorary Rangers?

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Fri May 20, 2005 7:28 am 
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DuQues wrote:
Do you still have those photo's? Would fit nicely here...


Just to tell you what does happen when we get the right info with the photographs, this example:

A visitor sent the public relations office a photograph of a couple picking monkey oranges on the road between Skukuza and Lower Sabie last year.
After examining the photograph, we handed it to our investigators at SANParks Corporate Investigative Services (CIS) and I understand that the people concerned were fined R300 on the charge "Remove seed from tree or plant" under Art 21 (j) of the National Parks Act 57 of 1976.
As they were both out of their vehicles, they were each fined R500 for "Alight from vehicle" under Reg 28 (5) of the same Act.
The people concerned paid the fine, thus (in the eyes of the law) admitting guilt.

What I am trying to say here is effective action by concerned visitors does result in action being taken against the perpetrators.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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 Post subject: To protrude or not to protrude
Unread postPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2005 9:23 am 
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Hi Everyone

Could I ask that the moderators merge this thread with this other "rules of the park" thread which is apparently on the same subject so that we are all on the same page here?

I haven't read WTM's comments on the "other" thread yet, but a few short comments from us here:
* Our enforcement officers are briefed to be reasonable in this case and to interpret the difference between "protruding" and pointing with a hand or camera out of the window. This photograph shows what we interpret as "protruding":
Image
* "Uitsteek" vs "protrude" (for Francoisd). I see where you are confused and will try and answer thus - you can point your arm out of the window and/or even put your head out of the window, but when you hang out of the window from your belt upwards, we interpret that as "protruding".

Hope this explains.

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2005 12:02 pm 
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Toddelelfe wrote:
I find on IOL these report IOL-Report
I couldn't comment these report. My english is not good enough to read and understand all the facts, and if they go ironic or all time serious.


FYI, here is the article:

Kruger Park gets tough
Carol Lazar July 23 2005 at 03:54PM

As the Wilson family drove slowly along the road with the windows of their car open because of the intense heat, Kate Wilson suddenly shouted: "Stop, elephant!" and pointed out of the window at the small herd along the side of the road, eight adults and two calves.
John Wilson braked and then moved forward to get a better view of the herd which was obscured by the bush.
The elephants, always aware creatures, looked up and a young male shook his head and took a few steps forward, then continued eating.
Wilson edged his car over to the right-hand side of the road so that his son William, a keen photographer, could position his 500mm lens on the windowsill.
Just then a remarkable thing happened.
One male elephant reared up and mounted a female.
William grabbed hold of his camera, stood up, poked his head through the car's sunroof and managed to capture the entire scene on film.

By that stage, two, then three, then five cars had converged on the scene.

In order to give others a better view, John reversed his car and then went around another vehicle.
He did this several times.

Kate's grandmother, Ermeline Wilson (79), who is hard of hearing and has poor eyesight, leaned out of the window in order to see better and William shouted several times in her ear: "A breeding herd, Gran, a breeding herd!"

Because of the excitement of the event, the Wilsons arrived back at Pretoriuskop camp three minutes after the gates had closed for the night.
Just a typical scene in the Kruger Park, you might think to yourself.

Think again.

The Wilson family drove slowly along the road when suddenly Kate Wilson shouted: "Stop! Elephant!" and pointed out of the window (R500 fine as her arm and shoulder were partly out of the vehicle) at the small herd alongside the road, eight adults and two calves.

John Wilson braked (R1 000 fine for negligent driving plus a R200 fine for not signalling.
Mind you, it might only be a R400 fine for inconsiderate driving plus R200 for not signalling) and then moved forward to get a better view of the herd obscured by the bush.

The elephants, always aware creatures, looked up and one young male shook his head and took a few steps forward (R500 fine for disturbing the animals) and then continued eating.

Wilson edged his car over the right-hand side of the road (R200 fine for neglecting to drive on the left-hand side of the road) so that his son William, a keen photographer, could position his 500mm lens on the window sill (R500 fine for William's two arms, elbows and long camera lens protruding out of the open window).

Just then, a remarkable thing happened.
One male elephant reared upwards and mounted a female.
William grabbed hold of his camera, stood up, poked his head from the car's sunroof and managed to capture the entire scene on film (R500 fine for protruding his head, arms, shoulders and camera through the roof sunroof).

By that stage, two, then three, then five cars had converged on the scene.

John, in order to give others a better view, reversed his car, (R500 fine for reversing carelessly on the wrong side of the road plus R200 for not signalling) then went around another vehicle (R500 fine for overtaking in what might be regarded as an unsafe manner while reversing). He did this several times (was fined R500 several times).

Kate's grandmother, Ermeline Wilson (79), who is hard of hearing and has poor eyesight, leaned out of the window (R500 fine for protruding through the open window) in order to see better and William shouted several times in her ear: "A breeding herd, Gran, a breeding herd!" (R500 for disturbing the munching animals by making loud sounds).

Because of the excitement of the event, the Wilsons arrived back at Pretoriuskop camp three minutes after the gates had closed for the night (R500 for arriving up to 30 minutes after the gate had closed).

Conceivably, on a two-hour drive in the Kruger National Park you can find yourself paying fines of R6 100 for the above behaviour deemed illegal by park authorities.

Admittedly, the above fictitious scenario might be regarded as far-fetched, but it is not entirely beyond the bounds of possibility for at the end of last year the Kruger National Park implemented new, harsh fines for perceived lawbreakers visiting the park (see box).

Commenting on the legislation the executive director of the Kruger National Park, Dr Bandile Mkhize, said: "We would like to encourage our visitors to enjoy the KNP but not make it unpleasant for anyone else, and most of these rules are there for that reason.
Please remember that there are other people around you that also have the right to be in the KNP and they should be treated as you would have them treat you."

Finally, visitors will be encouraged to report lawbreakers to local rangers, KNP Protection Services or the public relations department.
With this in mind, visitors are being asked to take note of the time, date, place and registration numbers of the cars of rule-breakers. Also welcome is photographic evidence.

Problems may arise with definitions such as that of negligent or dangerous driving, reversing or driving on the wrong side of the road, for it is conceivable that you and an officious observer might differ in the matter of interpretation.
But, if you are accused of such behaviour, you have to argue your case, either before the park authorities or in a magistrate's court.

Raymond Travers, spokesperson for the Kruger National Park, said: "The laws are to protect the animals and the public.
You cannot imagine how some people behave in the park."

In recent years, some visitors have complained about the scarcity of animals in various areas, and probably gave no thought to the possibility that such scarcity might be due to the unacceptable behaviour of visitors such as the one illustrated in the photograph.

Of course, there must be rules and regulations in a game reserve to safeguard the animals and people; but, when laws become too restrictive and are applied too zealously, there is a danger that the joyous and relaxed spirit of a visit to the park might be crushed.
That would be sad. On the other hand, visitors to the Kruger Park have to respect this precious heritage. There has to be a balance.
What do you think about the fines?
Are they too steep, or not severe enough?
E-mail your views to cla@star.co.za

Laws and fines

Visitors may be unaware of the laws and fines. They are as follows:
- R500 for disturbing the animals.
- R300 if you allow a domestic animal into the KNP (and that domestic animal will then be destroyed by a law-enforcement officer).
- R500 for cutting, damaging or destroying any tree or plant.
- R400 for feeding any animal.
R500 for alighting from your vehicle in an unauthorised place.
- R500 for protruding through the open vehicle, open door or open roof.
- Speeding fines range from R100 (between 61km/h and 64km/h in a 50k/h zone) to R1500 (90-94km/h in a 50km/h zone), with court appearances for speeding over 95km/h.
- R700 for failing to report to reception before staying overnight in a rest camp.
- R700 for staying overnight outside a rest camp.
- R700 for staying in a rest camp without payment.
- R500 for using unworthy, unregistered or unlicensed vehicles in the KNP.
- R500 for overtaking in an unsafe manner, including overtaking on the crest of a hill, bend or other place where vision is restricted.
- R1 000 or court for reckless or negligent driving.
- R200 for neglecting to drive on the left-hand side of the road unless done without obstructing or endangering or disturbing any animals.
- R200 for neglecting to give driving signals.
- R200 for reversing carelessly.
- R500 for driving on a no-entry road.
- R200 for leaving the road anywhere other than a parking area in a rest camp.
- R400 for inconsiderate driving and other offences.
- R400 for littering.
- R400 for trespassing.
- R750 for obstructing a KNP official from doing his or her duty.
- R200 for hitch-hiking.
- R300 for neglecting to produce an entrance permit on the instruction of a KNP official.
- R750 for failure to declare a weapon.
- R200 for failure to ensure that the weapon is unloaded before sealing it.
- R300 for failure to have the weapon inspected before leaving the KNP.
- R500 for arriving up to 30 minutes late at the camp or entrance gates.
- R1 000 for arriving 30 minutes to an hour late at the camp or entrance gates.
- R1 500 for arriving over an hour late at the camp or entrance gates.

Other offences will ensure an immediate court appearance and include:
- Entering the KNP with an explosive, weapon, trap or poison.
- Hunting.
- Removing, damaging or destroying eggs or removing honey from a beehive.
- Leaving the KNP with an animal or part thereof.
- Being in the possession of any habit-forming drug.
- Being in possession of a firearm or any dangerous weapon without consent.
- Driving under the influence.[/i]


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2005 1:40 pm 
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Foxy wrote:
Maybe someone can answer what happens if a person alights from his vehicle to change a punched tire - like we had too, or are we expected to spend hours waiting for help our of cell range??

KNP Spokesman, maybe you can inform us on this.


I think we all need to realise that law is not black and white. There are situations were you might be justified in breaking the law if it warrants it- these situations would be very rare occasions of course and would require a lot of explaining!
We stopped to help some people change a flat tyre for two reasons:
1) Instead of watching the guys back as he was trying to get the tyre loose from under the 4x4, his companions were ambling around the side of the road and not paying attention to what could be eyeing them from the bush. It turned out they were foreigners so were pretty clueless as far as what could happen-which is understandable and just required a bit of a talk on the bush.
2) We were out of cellphone range and reasonably far from any camp- and it was mid afternoon.

Obviously if we were in cell range or closer to camp we would have informed the camp staff and told the people help was on its way.
KNPSpokesman will offer the official response in due course, I am sure, Foxy.

bwana

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 Post subject: Explanations to Park-Rules on IOL / The Star
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2005 3:08 pm 
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Quote:
Obey park rules or face the consequences

August 02 2005 at 10:23AM

By Raymond Travers

Raymond Travers, spokesperson for the Kruger National Park says: "Most of the visitors that come to the Kruger abide by the rules and we appreciate their efforts. Unfortunately there are those that don't and if they are caught by KNP law enforcement officials they can and will be fined, as Mr Bornman from Ermelo found out recently.

"We thank those members of the public who assist us by sending us photographs or accurate accounts of people who are not maintaining the rules and assure them that this information is put to good use, either as awareness-building tools or as evidence for further legal action."

The most common offences committed by visitors to the Kruger National Park are the following (in no particular order):



Feeding animals (they then become problem animals and have to be shot).


Picking seeds/removing plants (it damages the environment - ie human impact - and people do this even though there are nurseries where you can buy plants, not to mention the possibilities of disease transferral.

Anthrax is transferred from carcasses to leaves on the surrounding trees by vultures. To paint a scenario, at a kill the vultures feed and then fly up to roost on nearby mopani trees. Someone picks a mopani leaf and takes it back to Gauteng and, after the next rains, there could be an outbreak of anthrax in Randburg).


Speeding (if you drive too fast, you might not be able to avoid animals/birds etc. In any case, our roads are not designed for high speed as they are too narrow and the corners are too sharp for any speed above about 70km/h.
High speed also spoils game viewing for other guests and we Do fine staff when they are caught too, but remember that staff are allowed to travel at 65km/h).


Hanging out of their vehicles (there are dangers from wild animals, particularly if the person falls out. A leopard can also pull someone from a vehicle quite easily.)


Getting out of vehicles (other than specified areas). The dangers here are self explanatory and the areas where you can get out have been carefully selected to minimise danger. Predators like leopard and lion can and will take humans if they see them (contrary to what some people in the industry say), and other wild animals like baboons, hippo, elephant and even bushbuck can be very dangerous.


Driving off road and on management roads. As you drive off road, you can not only damage plant life, but also destroy other micro organisms and, indeed, small animals like dwarf mongoose. Management roads, the roads with the no-entry signs, are there so that our rangers can conduct their patrols.

The animals found on these roads are actually not used to vehicles and often run away before you get to them anyway, but if a ranger finds you on one of these roads, he or she will immediately be suspicious as to your intentions and will definitely act against you.

Let us paint another scenario - the ranger has been given information that a group of poachers are operating in an area with a vehicle. He drives to the area and sees you driving there, suspects you are poachers and arrests you on poaching charges.

We recently had a situation near Malelane where a number of vehicles were found on a management road and we had to fine all of them.




This article was originally published on page 19 of The Star on July 29, 2005


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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 4:49 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 11:04 pm
Posts: 7
Back from a family reunion in Chicago, that's why I 've been so quiet.
I see we are back to the rules argument. as far as I am concerned there are no Grey Areas.
It is very black and white.
I have never strayed off a road into the bush, or taken a restricted road ever in all my years of visiting. Believe me there have been times but one needs to look at the whole picture.
Apart from the damage you could do to the area with those big 4 X 4 tyres, what happens if you do sneak into the bush just far enough off the road not to be seen from it and the car does not start or you have a flat.
What then.
At least if you stay on the "public roads" you will be seen and helped.

as far as the fines are concerned, the report from the spokesmen covers most of the transgressions we have all encountered before.
The only problem I see is the fines are not heavy enough, and for many " wealthy" visitors, they just shrug them off and continue to break the rules.
People who do that and have a history of breaking the rules need to be put on a Parks register and be banned for a period of time.
Like suspending a sportsman for being sent off for a transgression of the rules.
The person's name is blacklisted and logged on computer and if they ever attempt to book or enter the park, they are stopped.
Maybe that will sort out the hooligans from the good guys.
You also have various levels of suspension, and if you are allowed back in and break the laws again, your suspension is heavier, 3 times and you are banned for life.

After all, these parks are there for millions of us to enjoy the wild, the nature and the animals.
It is us who cause all the chaos that results in animals having to be shot, or run over.
The penalty for a lion eating a human is death, but we break the laws of the park and rules to protect the animals and we get a slap on the wrist or a R100 fine.
I don't think so!!!!!


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Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 01, 2005 1:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2005 9:10 pm
Posts: 704
Location: Cape Town
We are a bit concerned about people getting out of vehicles at water holes and at sightings of animals.
We noticed that lots of people were hanging out of vehicles, sat halfway out of vehicles.
We did not once see a Honorary Ranger or somebody from Parks patrolling the roads.
And that can only be the reason why people do not adhere to the rules.
My SO and I feel that something bad is still going to happen in Kruger due to people ignoring the rules.
Kruger authorities needs to be more visible so that they can been seen by these perpetrators.
Saw a couple of tourist hanging and climbing out of vehicles (I took some photos) We came to the conclusion that some of these people cannot read or understand English or do not want to read the English written rules.
SO asked one of the South African guys why he is climbing out of his vehicle and his reply was that if the tour guides in those half open vehicles can be in the open so can he climb out of his vehicle to look at game!

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