A friend was recently involved in a helicopter rescue effort described in “‘Not knowing is so hard.’ Hiker rescued after 5 days without food in California forest”:
A hiker was rescued from a canyon in a California forest after going missing for five days without food and little water, officials said.
George “Dave” Null, 58, went missing in the Angeles National Forest May 15, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. It took a massive search effort, involving at least five agencies, to find him, the sheriff’s department said.
Null was spotted at creek base Wednesday evening while a helicopter crew searched Bear Creek in the canyon east of Triple Rock, according to the Montrose Search and Rescue Team.
This made me wonder why smartphones don’t have a personal locator beacon capability. Coronapanic has proven that there is no limit to our risk-aversion. Why wouldn’t we engineer slightly thicker phones with a fold-out antenna and a guaranteed dedicated power reserve that can be used as a PLB when we’ve gotten lost, e.g., on the way to or from the vaccine booster clinic or the P100 mask store?
The obvious disadvantage of this approach is that the phone becomes slightly bulkier and heavier. But if we’re willing to wear masks all the time and take non-FDA-approved vaccines why aren’t we willing to carry a slightly heavier phone if it could save just one life?