interesting that the fancy new technology allows this whereas traditional punching wouldn't - something to keep in mind when designing?
I don't know if you heard this or not (you definitely will hear more at the board meeting this week), but someone was disqualified for jumping up and successfully reaching close enough to get a valid punch. This person was very upset about the DQ and dug up a bunch of rules. (I agree with the DQ and not this person's interpretation of rules, but I agree that the club could be better about posting what orienteering rules we adhere to for club events).
Anyway, there are guidelines about when using SIAC controls, that you shouldn't place them too close to uncrossable features for this exact same scenario.
Also, there was a recent change to IOF rules (that hasn't yet trickled down to O-USA rules). It used to be that controls could be as close as 15 meters apart on sprint maps, but now that's been increased to 25 meters. The reason for this is that SIAC chips won't record a punch within X of seconds after a previous punch, and there was a high profile race where a runner ran past another control that registered on the punch, and when that runner visited the nearby correct control, it didn't register at all, leading to a DQ.
i did hear something about the DQ. i think a similar situation happened in my heat but it wasn't reported. i personally didn't feel too bothered because the person was clearly faster than me and didn't need those extra seconds to win, but it was confusing at the time when they suddenly had gotten ahead of me after the control in question.
good to know there are guidelines to prevent this scenario! and wow, that's nuts about the change in minimum distance between controls but makes total sense when you think about it. do you know what the range of the SIAC chips is to register a control? how close do you have to be for it to punch? maybe they should have designed a system where you still have to physically contact the control box but not need to slow down as much to punch...