Tag Archives: james-kim

Safety First

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The other night when Ponzi’s plane came in extremely late, we were driving home and noticed a couple of cars. One was pulled over to the side of the road, and the other was upside-down. We were about the second car on the scene. Ponzi immediately grabbed her phone and dialed 911. Ponzi then got out of the car and walked up to the vehicle. By then, another vehicle had pulled over, as well. It was worrisome, because we had no idea if the occupants of the car were injured. However, the driver of this second car was a paramedic. I rummaged in my trunk for road flares, since we were on an Interstate… only to find I didn’t have any.

Within minutes, it was apparent that the driver of the car was completely intoxicated. It was also apparent that the car was totaled. The driver was lucky, and walked away without a scratch. This was a disconcerting experience. I’m glad the driver was physically unharmed. I felt completely unprepared for such an emergency, as this is the first time I’ve encountered something like this. You can bet that the following day, I bought road flares, and put together a small emergency kit. You just never know when disaster could strike.

A community member sent me an email right around this same time, describing a recent situation of his own. He was driving home from work during a major snowstorm. His vehicle ended up trapped in a snowbank (he was unharmed), halfway between the two places. He wanted to send me his top five tips to deal with emergency situations to share with all of you. These have been put together out of his personal experience.

  • Don’t make things worse, such as gunning your engine. It’s very easy in a situation like this to panic and do something that could make your situation harder.
  • Don’t automatically expect help. If no one is aware of your timetable, they won’t come looking for you. Someone WILL come along eventually, so just stay put.
  • Only act when you are rational. It isn’t easy to remain calm and rational when you are trapped in an emergency. Try to stay as calm as you can.
  • Enumerate your options. “What can I do?” “What will give me the best chance of success?” For instance, in the case of an earthquake, ask yourself if you can get yourself quickly to a safe place. In most emergency situations, you’ll be able to assess your situation quickly. Sometimes, the best option is to stay put.
  • Be prepared. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. It’s just better to be prepared for the unexpected, because life happens to everyone. Have an emergency kit on hand, and keep it with you when traveling.

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I Worked with James Kim

I don’t have a lot of time right now, and there’s not much more I can add to the conversations already happening. Suffice it to say, I’m extremely saddened to hear the news of James Kim’s passing. I was one of the few who had the EXTREMELY distinct pleasure to work with James at TechTV – and his “Lab Rats” segments were some of the best we did. I could always trust his advice, as he always seemed to know more than anybody else (in a day before Gizmodo and Engadget).

I’ve been scouring my archives to find a photo of us doing something together on Call for Help, but I can’t find one – and if anybody else has one, I’d certainly appreciate it.

What’s so ironic about this tragedy is that James, of all people, was the person most likely to have gadgets that could have saved him. I don’t mean that as a “shoulda, coulda, woulda” statement, mind you – just that I knew James was about as geeky as they came. If anything, I believe he’d want us to learn from his passing; Duncan posted a handful of fantastic tips, should you find yourself in a similar situation some day. Please read James and Kati’s Web site for all the latest official information, including where to send your donations.