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  1. #11
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Wow. That just something you don't hear about everyday. Glad you're okay.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  2. #12
    Senior Member
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    The pole was the one beside the picnic table at the Fontana Hilton shelter. It had a street light on it, now embedded in my tarp in fine fragments. It was nice and dark brown. It looked perfectly stable. Unfortunately, it wasn't.

    Can you imagine if that'd happened in the spring, with 6 hikers sitting around that table? &*#$%!

    As to liability, I know that it wasn't the fault of whoever owned the pole. I was just talking crazy scared. However, if they tried to charge me with malicious damage or some such, I knew that there are lawyers who'd sue the farmer when you stepped in horse crap--and maybe win!

  3. #13
    Jazilla's Avatar
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    A few years ago we had to start filtering 10,000 poles out of our system. We found that they would only last a year or two, sometimes if left in the pole yard for too long they would crumble when you picked them up. Surprisingly they looked brand new. It was something wrong with the treatment they used.
    Yosemite Sam: Are you trying to make me look a fool?
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    Yosemite Sam: Yer deerrrnnn right I don't!

  4. #14
    Senior Member
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    IMO, you haven't committed a crime. If you weren't intentionally trying to damage the pole or misusing it recklessly, then there shouldn't be criminal liability. Remember, there's the criminal system where prosectued by the government and there's the civil system where you're sued by a private party.

    Civil liability is different. Were you negligent (careless) in using the pole as you did? Beats me. Did you test it or inspect it? Was the pole owner contributorily negligent in not maintianing it? Again, beats me-- you'd have to look at their maintainance records and policies and whatnot. I don't think the owner of the pole will be too deterred by a threat of a suit against it. The legal system generally awards damages for damage and not risk of damage. I'll stop the analysis here, but I could go on.

    In the end, do what your conscience tells you is right. If you're upset you broke the pole, admit responsibility and offer to pay for it. Negotiate a payment option if you think they should be responsible for the crappy condition of the pole. If you're worried about being sued, hire a lawyer, and ask him or her to pursue the matter for you. A cheap option is to ask around to find out the cost of replacing the pole, and then send an anonymous donation to the pole owner to cover all or part of the amount. Or you could simply forget about the whole thing. Who's going to think less of you if you just forget about it? Not me, and probably not anybody here, and probably not your friends and family. In the end, it's your conscience and your choice.

    Good luck.

  5. #15
    Member Kirkman's Avatar
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    I agree with nails. No harm no foul. You did not intend to break the pole and you did not suffer a debilitating injury from the pole breaking....Let it go and just be glad that no one was seriously hurt....In fact you may have saved lives in the processes.... I see you as a Hero! 8^)
    A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history - with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.

  6. #16
    Senior Member TDunc's Avatar
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    On the other hand, I, as a pole owner (supposing), would appreciate the knowledge that it was not just someone trying to tear up my property. I think a simple phone call to say that you were there (don't have to give name you know) and what actually happened should clear your mind and the mind of the pole owner.. Who knows, it could make them start looking at thier property a little better and maybe keep that family of four at the table from getting hurt in the future.

    Just a thought!
    ------- AKA "4D's" ----------------
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  7. #17
    Senior Member gumby's Avatar
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    I can just see this.

    "Good evening, this is John Walsh of Amaricas Most Wanted. We need your help tracking down a most malicious vandal of them all. He belongs to a small, but growing group of people known as "Hammock Hangers". He was last seen fleeing from the scene of a hit and run with a telephone pole at the Fontana Hilton. His description as reported by eyewitnesses. A man running hell bent with a mangled hammock and tarp as well as other "Hammocking" items. This happened when he attempted to attach his hammock to the pole and the pole ended up falling down upon him and a picnic table. The picnic table was an innocent bystander and desires to remain nameless. So please, if you know of or see this malicious character contact us at AMW. Thank-you this has been John Walsh."

    Seriously though I'm glad that you didn't get hurt.

  8. #18
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    John Walsh lives here in Vero Beach, maybe I'll go convert him to hammocks. Then the tables would turn; he'd be chasing down villans that put up old poles.

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