BASSETERRE, St.Kitts (Friday 26th July 2019)- An authorised professional tour guide is cautioning both visitors and locals alike against going on hikes and other related outings without being accompanied by a trained and qualified guide certified by the Tourism Authority.
“…for safety, protection of the environment and the whole enhancement of the experience, it’s better you go with a guide and never go by yourself,” he explained during an exclusive interview with this media house.
In light of the last week’s injurious fall incident at Mount Liamuiga involving a newly-wed US couple, this media house reached out to that tour guide professional on the subject matter.
“It’s imperative that they go with a qualified and trained tour guide. They definitely should not go on their own because there are certain protocols that you should follow once you are going into those areas, apart from the safety aspect, there are certain things that you need to do like the principles of ‘Leave no trace’; you cannot be going and breaking off certain trees and even in the event that you get lost and you start breaking down certain trees and so on, you’ll be destroying the environment in that way.”
He continued: “The other thing is that you can’t just get any guide also; that’s how important it is. Let’s say that you are going with a guide-that’s not enough because you must know that the guide is trained and qualified because it’s not all guides who are capable…so you might end up going with a guide who is just doing it because of the money and when you look half way up the trail that guide become physically unwell so you’ll be lost with a guide in jeopardy so that’s why it’s even more important to not go by yourself and if you are going then use a qualified and trained guide. One of the things about these trained guides is that they have to keep themselves fit and healthy and they also take all of the different security precautions and they also have their first aid kit and everything to administer, and the protocols to administer these things. This is how deep it is so if you are thinking about going by yourself forget about doing so.”
According to him: “The Tourism Authority and the Ministry of Tourism have a list of people who does that because they have to do these things because a trained and qualified guide would be licensed by the Tourism Authority and the Tourism Authority every year does refresher course for these workers and require certain things like safety kits and knowing how to administer these things.”
“Apart from the safety aspect, certain things you would pass by, an experienced guide would be able to give you information and interpretation about certain plants among other things and so your experience would be enhanced if you go with an experienced guide-so for safety, protection of the environment and the whole enhancement of the experience, it’s better you go with a guide and never go by yourself,” he stated further.
Additionally, he informed that just recently there was a bulletin board notice for such a refresher course.
“It is mandatory to attend the training course or else they would not be issued the new permit so once the permit is up to date, you’ll know that the person is keeping up to the requirements of the Tourism Authority.”
He encourages individuals to ask tour guides for their credentials and license.
Clay and Acaimie Chastain of Indianapolis, a husband and wife on their honeymoon who came to the island the day after their wedding in Crawfordsville, Indiana and did the outing four days after on Thursday 18th July according to information gleaned from the Indianapolis Star media house.
The two hiked two miles up to the dormant volcano and Clay fell some estimated 50 feet inside the volcano after wanting to get a better view of the lush greenery. It is suspected that a rope snapped.
e was, however, able to climb out and with the support of his wife walked halfway down from the mountainous area and called 911 for help.
He reportedly suffered a concussion and cracked vertebra, a fracture in his skull and loss of hearing in his right ear. Furthermore, it was revealed that air also entered his brain tissue, which prevented the Chastains from taking a commercial flight home.
Via GoFundMe, they reportedly raised more than $35,000 on Tuesday evening last week for medical expenses and transportation to Florida and then Indiana
As gathered, the couple left the island on Wednesday 24th July.