Teen Tip Tuesday-Keep our kids safe while having fun

10 Oct

As parents, we want to keep our kids safe as they experience the world.  Kids need the chance to have fun and explore on their own.  Unfortunately, sometimes tragedy occurs and reminds us to be very mindful of the dangers that kids face.  Here are some tips that parents can do to keep our kids safe.  

15-year-old Tyler Madoff was hiking with his Bold Earth Teen Adventures tour group in July of 2012 when he was swept out to sea and never recovered. Tyler and the other tour group members, all teenagers, were resting in a tide pool area near the Captain Cook Monument at Kealakekua Bay in Hawaii when a wave crashed on the shore, carrying him and another teen out to sea. The other boy was rescued, but Tyler was never found. What was initially reported as a freak accident by Bold Earth, was later determined to be anything but. #MakeSafeTravelHappen

Tyler Madoff's death can help us keep our kids safe.


Tour guides in charge of supervising Tyler’s excursion were unprepared for their journey, especially under duress. The guides were not properly trained in oceanic conditions, nor were they equipped with life vests, flares, or a way to call for help – a local fisherman made the call. On paper this company appears completely legitimate, boasting professional guardianship of small groups and an American Camp Association accreditation. So, how could an incident like Tyler’s occur?


Tyler Madoff's death can help us keep our kids safe.

Accidents are not uncommon on adventure tours and other children, like Tyler, have lost their lives on trips that were meant to be fun, rewarding experiences. Adventure tour company representatives will remind us that accidents do happen, and that parent’s know there is a certain amount of risk they are taking by sending their children on a tour. But the lack of preparedness shown by some companies is simply unacceptable, and something must be done to hold trip leaders to a certain standard of safety and mitigate risk.


The Madoff family did their due diligence when looking into the background of Bold Earth Teen Adventures, a company that appeared to have all of the correct credentials. Parents should do the same if they’re considering a trip, or even if they’re looking into sending their children to camp. There is never a 100% guarantee on anything, but a few small tips to help your children prepare for travel may #MakeSafeTravelHappen:


  • Use rating sites like campratingz.com, yelp.com, and choice camps to read reviews from other parents and campers.

  • Ask the tour company or camp about training qualifications for counselors and group leaders. Don’t be afraid to ask about hiring processes or the leaders as well.

  • Prepare you child for emergency situations. Make sure they know basics like where to go and what to do if an emergency arises.


Another family shouldn’t have to suffer as the Madoff’s have. Help us raise awareness and keep our kids safe by sharing Tyler’s story. #MakeSafeTravelHappen

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