It’s all too risky

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I think John Eoin Douglas 
(Letters, 20 November) is being ­facetious.

The change to the drink ­driving laws will save maybe a life or two (official estimates ­between three and 20 although I think this optimistic).

This is nothing compared with the number lost each year as a result of the use of mobile phones and other electronic gadgets whilst driving.

Your paper stated the UK police estimate a higher death rate from such usage than from drink driving.

Also on Wednesday your paper stated that about 2,000 people die each year in Scotland from air pollution – mostly caused by motor vehicles?

So either the government should tackle the worst problems first and stop politicising these matters, or maybe place the entire population under house arrest to save lives, but then again, most violence occurs in the home.

So maybe they should stop playing Big Brother and do something useful.

I do not believe that the changes to the drink driving rules will make any noticeable change but other actions might, like making the driving test more difficult as the majority of accidents are down to bad driving not bad roads or even drunks.

Ian Ross

Eden Lane

Edinburgh

John Eoin Douglas disapproves of hillwalkers and mountaineers, especially those who die on the hills.

Any deaths are lamentable, but to describe the numbers of casualties in any given year as “carnage” is to grossly exaggerate both the statistics and the facts. No slaughter of the innocent is perpetrated.

True, hill-walking is no more “necessary” than writing letters to newspapers, but both ­activities are a satisfying form of self-expression.

The latter requires little ­physical effort, while the former requires significant effort, ­stamina, knowledge and, above all, a love of the wild, high places of Scotland.

Mountain Rescue organisations would never condemn those who suffer mishap on the hills simply for being there.

Their members are experienced mountaineers with an innate appreciation of the lure of the hills.

They may criticise poor judgment, including not heeding ­avalanche warnings or being poorly equipped for the ­conditions, but they understand exactly how it feels to stand, ­exhausted but exhilarated, looking over the snow-covered ­terrain lying far below and spreading to the horizon.

Carolyn Taylor

Wellbank

Broughty Ferry

I really must congratulate John Eoin Douglas on taking authoritarian bampottery to whole new level with his call to prohibit mountaineering – for the good of the poor mountaineers of course, who clearly lack Mr Douglas’s ability to know what’s best for them.

Leaving the practicalities to one side (would Mr Douglas prefer a fence or a wall around every mountain in Scotland?), and ­focusing on the logical 
conclusion of Mr Douglas’s approach to risk management, it can only be a matter of time before, horse riding, cycling, flying or anything else that might lead to a fatality is prohibited.

In fact, it might be best to ­prohibit people being born at all, given the 100 per cent probability of dying.

Robert Miller

Bracken Avenue

Falkirk