The Hawaii Pack & Paddle tour group took twelve 14-15 year olds on an expedition through Big Island hiking and kayaking. During the tour 15-year-old Tyler Madoff, of White Plains New York was washed away by a large wave along with another 15 year old boy. Tyler Madoff was not found on time to be rescued, while the other boy is currently still recovering at a local Hospital.
It is reported that Hawaii Pack & Paddle Tour Company did not have a permit to be in the tide pool area where the incident happened. However, the owner of the company claims that they do in fact have a permit to be in that area and that during the time of the accident the sea was calm, making this an unexpected accident. The owner also claimed that the guides are highly trained and handled the situation to the best of their ability.
Yet this is not the first case of a death during a children’s excursion trip. On June 10, 2006 four Kansas families lost their children while on an educational tour in Costa Rica. The drowning occurred when they were swept out to sea. Several children have lost their lives due to careless and negligent behavior by tour operators and their guides. Another child was recently shot in Costa Rica while on a tour by a hotel security guard.
Tour companies often use subcontractors to participate in parts of the tour and they then try to deny any liability when a tragedy occurred. Tour companies must be held responsible for their carelessness and the selection of their subcontractors. Swartz & Swartz P.C. has filed a law suit to prevent these tragedies from occurring.