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Michael Schumacher "Gravely injured" in Meribel

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Awful news. Sounds very serious, BBC News said he had a helmet on at the time of the accident. Has it been mentioned if he was on or off piste at the time of the accident?
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According to Le Dauphine he was skiing between the pistes La Biche and Mauduit below the Dent de Burgin. I don't know the area that well but from the piste map they look close together so it would appear that although off piste he wasn't on any great hike or tour (stand to be corrected by a 'local' if I'm wrong.)
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Bild maybe a German tabloid but they often get it right because they paythe most to sources.

http://www.bild.de/sport/motorsport/michael-schumacher/frankreich-ski-unfall-koma-34019952.bild.html
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stanton, nothing I can see in that report that goes substantially beyond the (freely available) press statements by the hospital, Meribel or Schumacher's management team.

Next most likely source of an update will be the press conference at the hospital later this morning (1100 local time).
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BBC news channel Schumacher press conference now.
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^ "If not for his helmet, he'd be dead" "head injuries common, we treat them a lot here" "we encourage the wearing of helmets" "Helmet helped him a lot" "Fighting for his life."


Last edited by You'll need to Register first of course. on Mon 30-12-13 11:09; edited 1 time in total
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"We can say he is fighting for his life. We judge him to be in a very serious situation... Without a helmet he wouldn't be here now." Professor Payan

"The helmet wasn't enough to protect him completely, but it really did help." Dr Chabardes
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nozawaonsen,

Maybe but they are publishing way before Reuters/AP etc.
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Avalanche Poodle wrote:
ianbradders, Unfortunately, when venturing off piste you never know when a rock my be just beneath the surface or ahead of a fall. I think that a helmet is a sensible choice when skiing on such ground, but it still won't give total protection, just a better chance. i always wear one and have had a couple of knocks where I have been grateful for it.


You are much more likely to need a helmet skiing on piste than off.

Quote:
He's probably an expert skier


Not so much, very stiff and upright and a bit in the back seat, skis faster than his ability level, probably insensitive to risk after all the F1 years.
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http://www.focus.de/sport/formel1/schumacher/michael-schumacher-ski-unfall-grenoble-koma-operation-in-klinik-13_id_3509262.html


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Looks like it is up to Schumackers body & faith now! Looks like the 1st responders got everything right & between that and him wearing a lid he was given a chance of survival
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Conference this morning made clear only one operation so far. Bild now seems to have dropped their earlier claim he had had a second operation. stanton, being first with the news isn't always the point.
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A ski instructor I was with this morning said he was skiing with his 14 year old son. When the off-piste is as sketchy as it is now I'd say you need a piste at least as much off piste as on - maybe more.
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You know it makes sense.
Surprisingly for a German he was skiing in Meribel. Off piste in Austria generally less rocks ?
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Peter S, less surprising given he apparently owns a chalet in Meribel.

It's still early season and the snowpack is thinner than usual for the time of year, so rocks will be nearer the surface. There was fresh snow yesterday morning which could well have hidden any rocks beneath a thin covering.

There are plenty of rocks in Austria too.
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Peter S,
He lives near Lake Geneva in Switzerland. The poor and uneven coverage is catching a lot of people out right across the alps at the moment. It looks all white and fine, the wind deposits deeper pockets of snow that make the skier / snowboarder believe there's enough snow off-piste until they hit something. Similar conditions caught me out early 2009, I came away with slighty torn / streched ligaments and a hairline fracture of the shin bone. Unfortunately Michael wasn't so lucky.

My father suffered a series of brain hemorrhages when I was around 10 years of age. All you can do is hope and wait, every second feels like an hour. First you wait to see if he lives, second to see if he is left with brain damage. All you want in the world is for your Dad to wake up again. I hope he pulls through and makes a full recovery - my thoughts go out to him and his family.


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Mon 30-12-13 12:36; edited 1 time in total
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Off piste is definietly sketchy right now even with the recent addition of snow. We did some last week but only where previous fresh tracks had been cut and generally not far from the piste. Always a bit of a gamble I guess.
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jirac18 wrote:
.... We did some last week but only where previous fresh tracks had been cut and generally not far from the piste. Always a bit of a gamble I guess.


Indeed - neither "fresh tracks" nor "not far from the piste" should be considered safe options (not suggesting you had made that assumption so as not to derail the thread)
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holidayloverxx, fair one
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Can't say you were my favourite driver Michael, but hope you pull through with minimal longterm consequences.
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He has a big chalet in Meribel so presumably he has a sizeable contingent there - staff and family/friends. They'll all be super-worried.
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laundryman, I was never a fan either, but I would wish him well as I would anyone in that situation.
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Some thoughts (and clarity) from Gary Hartstein, Anesthesiologist and Emergency Physician who used to work as a doctor on the F1 circuit for a number of years.

http://formerf1doc.wordpress.com/2013/12/30/the-monday-press-conference/

"First off, this press conference was rather more reassuring than what I expected."

"We’ve’ been told that Michael has bilateral lesions. This mean the brain is wounded in both hemispheres. That shouldn’t surprise us. This was a hard hit."
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In a world where the word "legend" is banded about liberally MS really is a legend. I didn't always agree with his F1 tactics (parking at Monaco, swerving to avoid being passed etc) but he's a tough guy and he's a winner. I hope he comes through this and makes a full recovery.
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Markymark29, +1
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Markymark29, +2
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If he fell where i was told he fell, it really is a freak accident as it's not steep, on an 'off piste' bit between two pistes which can only be 10m wide. The type of place I would go every day without even thinking about the fact that I was in any greater danger than being on piste.

It shouldn't be forgotten what a great job the piste security team do - they clearly got there quickly and decide to get him off by helicopter. Of course it might have been because the realised who he was but from what I've seen over the years, these guys have to make some quick life or death decisions in pretty uncomfortable situations and when they've sent off the latest person with bone sticking out of their leg off to hospital, they get their sledge back up the hill and wait for the next one. I don't know what their background or training is or what they get paid but don't forget they clear the pistes, blast the avalanches and hoover up people . . . Are they like paramedics who are good skiers or good skiers who are good at first aid and don't mind a bit of blood and gore?
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I just hope he has a full recovery, can you imagine a wheelchair bound Schummy with brain damage. I think he would rather not survive than be like this.

As Markymark29, says the guy is a true legend.
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Has anyone confirmed where exactly he was skiing??
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Quote:

The type of place I would go every day without even thinking about the fact that I was in any greater danger than being on piste.

But off-piste cover is extremely sketchy and uneven at the moment. Some areas were scraped to augment cover on piste. A skier could easily fall after hitting a ski tip against a rock, or run into a bush, or even just a bit of uneven ground. There are more than enough warnings around, after all.
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emwmarine, apparently between La Biche and Mauduit.

http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2013/12/30/1388398542054/GraphicLocationofSchumacher.png

[image from The Guardian]


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Mon 30-12-13 18:42; edited 1 time in total
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To be honest Pam W, if it's where I think it is, it's sometimes hard in that area to tell which bit is piste and which bit isn't. There are two or three parallel pistes converging around about there and sometimes particularly after snowfall you can't tell it apart until it's underfoot.. Someone correct me of I'm wrong.
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pam w, if it was where I think it was (see post from nozawaonsen) then you could hardly call it off piste in the true sense if term. I'm being more careful than I have ever been before because of the conditions and really wouldn't have thought too much about skiing where I was told he fell - just a bit of scruffy stuff between pistes, although yes the are some boulders. Of course you are right about warnings but what I have read has been about 'genuine' off piste and primarily around the avalanche risk.

Think this just shows that this is a dangerous sport in a dangerous environment where things can go wrong even for good skiers whether you are way off the beaten track, on the beaten track or just off it but I have no intention of changing what I do for recreation. However, all very sad for those affected by the this and other accidents in the mountains.
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I am no Doctor but the latest I have seen on the French news suggest multiple brain injuries / haemorrhages. This sounds very similarly to someone who I have coached adaptive rowing. My friend fell on a pavement and was in a coma for 3 months. If MS survives it may be a long time before the prognosis becomes clear. Some kind of disability is probable I fear. Let's hope even if this happens he can still lead a rich and fulfilled life.
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Markymark29 wrote:
In a world where the word "legend" is banded about liberally MS really is a legend. I didn't always agree with his F1 tactics (parking at Monaco, swerving to avoid being passed etc) but he's a tough guy and he's a winner. I hope he comes through this and makes a full recovery.


Here Here

Amazing to think that just over a week ago I (and no doubt several other snowHead) skied fast down one of those pistes and a week later a champion is in hospital

C'mon schumi
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Quote:

Of course you are right about warnings

I was thinking of the warnings about poor snow cover - rocks, tumps, bushes, all waiting to trip you up. Many of the piste closures have been because of sketchy cover, after all. A snowboarder with me last week took a detour off piste and damaged his board quite badly smacking into a rock - nothing else damaged, happily, but it could have ended in contact between head and rock. Avalanches aren't the only danger off piste.
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davidof wrote:
Avalanche Poodle wrote:
ianbradders, Unfortunately, when venturing off piste you never know when a rock my be just beneath the surface or ahead of a fall. I think that a helmet is a sensible choice when skiing on such ground, but it still won't give total protection, just a better chance. i always wear one and have had a couple of knocks where I have been grateful for it.


You are much more likely to need a helmet skiing on piste than off.


Not if you do a large amount of forest skiing and go down rocky steep gullies though.
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emwmarine wrote:
Has anyone confirmed where exactly he was skiing??



A video of Schumacher being lifted off the mountain:

http://youtube.com/v/UQ4Pw573Zlc&feature=youtube_gdata_player
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Daily Mail show a detailed photo of area where it is believed the incident took place:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2530681/Michael-Schumacher-brain-surgery-piste-skiing-accident-leaves-coma.html

Just a small rocky cut through between two pistes.
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Shocked to hear of Michael's accident & regardless of what you think of him as a sportsman, racing driver, he is a husband, father, brother & son.

He also participates in a sport we all love & for that we should just offer our prayers, thoughts & best wishes for a speedy recovery.

As for the subject of wearing a helmet, this will just continue until I fear it becomes compulsory on the hill [I & my family all wear them] but H & Safety will bang on about it until they get their way, not what I advocate personally.

Hopefully we will hear good news in the next 24-48 hours.
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