Brothers die in NZ. Bad Karma ensues.

A couple of young blokes from Australia were travelling in NZ over the Xmas break and unfortunately killed in an avalanche/rock slide. Because they were, like, dead, they weren’t able to avail themselves of the night booked for the local motel. The motel owners must be one step from the poverty line because they’ve ‘called in’ the bill from the parents.

What’s worse is that one of the boys (who’s body still has not been recovered) went to his grave with the hire-car keys in his pocket. How thoughtless can you be??? Surely he should have known that the hire-car company would be really inconvenienced by his lack of planning and stuff? It’s, like, gonna cost nearly a thousand bucks to retrieve the car and get new keys. Fuck.


Hope a thousand camel fleas send an avalanche down on your head/s folks.

The article on the Ninemsn site has comments from people who think the bill should have been waived if the deaths were an “accident”, but because the boys crossed the fence and bypassed the warning signs then their deaths were their own fault and they should have to pay for the hire car. :rolleyes:

I’m not saying the boys weren’t idiots, but to bung a bill onto grieving parents who lost both of their kids in such a tragedy, well that seems a bit harsh to me.

Harsh-arama. Tact and consideration in short supply in the Antipodes?

Well, so much for my planned trip to New Zealand to try out dangerous sports.

No, it’s just business during tough times. Both the motel owners and the rental car company have lost business and incurred costs due to someone elses fault, so they are sticking with the agreements (and in fact, the rental company is waiving some daily fees). And an expectation that in most circumstances insurance should cover such contingencies.

<speculation>And I bet the Aussie papers won’t report that an Aussie Insurance company has denied the families claim on the grounds that the boys violated the terms of their policy.</speculation>


So, undertakers should never charge, then?

Gosh, it sure would be awesome if creditors could go fuck themselves when the debtor dies!

Seriously, why don’t you send a cheque to the motel owner for the $100 or whatever and ask her to put it against the family’s bill. Send a copy to the family so they know they don’t have to pay anymore.

Unless the parents signed some sort of document saying they were guaranteeing the bills, why the hell would they be liable? They were old enough to be legally adult, so presumably debts aren’t transferable to the parents. If they have estates, by all means claim against it but otherwise, tough titties folks.

You know what?

I don’t agree with it, but I can see where the rental car dealer is coming from.

He appears to be a small-time rental agent. He’s not affiliated with any of the big boys like Hertz or Avis that I can see. So he’s possibly an owner/operator. If that’s the case, anything that goes wrong with the cars comes directly outta his hide.

He rented the car to the family with the understanding that only certain people were to drive the car (the father and cousin? If I recall the article correctly). So only one of them should have had the keys, not either of the boys.

But it’s not just about the keys. In the end it’s about $1600 that he’s out of pocket just to get the car back and the keys replaced. And the rental fees that he’s out, because one of his cars is stuck in another place until the replacement keys are procured/ it’s towed back to his garage. He’s out of pocket more than just the $1600, because the car was worth $98/day and it’s been gone, with no fees being paid, for 4 days at this point. So he’s nearly up to 2 grand.

And y’know, as I said, I don’t agree with it, I don’t think it’s right and in fact I do think it’s a bit crass, but if he’s being hit by the financial crisis like other small operators (and some large ones) are, I can understand why he feels justified in standing by the charges that he is upholding.

I’m willing to be corrected, but it appears to have been a family trip, with the parents booking/paying for the car and room in the first place.

OK, that would at least make sense.

I don’t know what country you live in, but in the US, that’s exactly what happens to unsecured debt. They can go after your estate, but they can’t bill your relatives. This may differ in community property states, where the surviving spouse may be legally responsible for debts incurred during the marriage. But not parents or siblings.

An anonymous benefactor from New Zealand has offered to reimburse the car hire company.


If the boys made the bookings and signed the agreements, then the company would have to pursue the estate. But since the parents booked the rental car and put the father and cousin down as the only ones allowed to drive it. The sons take the car (in violation of the rental agreement) then proceed to stupid themselves out of the gene pool and incur substantial costs to the rental company. Well boo frickin hoo. The parents signed the contract, the parents are liable. The family pissed all over the rental company and now whingers in the public want to emotionally blackmail the company to foot the bill. Nope, sorry, not as far as I’m concerned.

Maybe, but it’s irrelevant in this case. The parents were on the trip too. They rented the car and rented the room. According to the story, someone in the family called after the accident, and asked to keep the room, but the family didn’t come back.

Oh I agree. I was just responding to the comment about debt in general by Uvula Donor.

Undertakers don’t contract with the deceased.


Unless it’s a “pre-need” agreement.