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Old 07-02-2007
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Should I be worried?

This past week-end, I was working on my boat up on Lake Erie and I noticed three guys on an old Allied Seacraft (I think) in the transient slip down the dock. They were having a pretty good time drinking beer and trying to figure out how to rig the boat. Statements like "If that rope goes there, were does this rope go?" and "I don't think this wire should be around this round thing." led me to believe this was a new purchase by some new "sailors". Anyway, after a while, one of them stumbled over and stared at my boat and made a comment about my main halyard, which went something like, "Your rope for your big sail is pretty long; the one on our boat is attached to a wire and when we raise the sail, we run out of rope." Now, I am far from an seasoned, experienced blue water sailor, but I told him I would stop over and see if I could figure it out. It turns out that they were trying to use the topping lift for the main halyard. The owner made a comment that he got the boat at a good price and they were going to sail it to Auglaize, Michigan over the next four days. They were sure they would make it before the beer ran out. He also made the statement that if they sound like they don't know a lot about sailing, its because they don't. He did say he owned a 27' boat before buying this one. I told him he would be smart to sail during the day and stay within sight of land.

So, at around 8:00PM Saturday night, they yell over to me that they are going out into Sandusky Harbor to "try things out" before they leave Sunday morning. The last thing the owner yells is "If we don't come back, send someone after us!!! Ha-ha-ha." Having worked on my boat all day, I fell asleep around 9:30 and when I woke up in the middle of the night, I thought I'd check to see if beer drinkers were back in their slip. They were not. I thought they may have decided to make their way towards Detroit and anchor for the night. However, the next morning when I was more lucid, I thought maybe I should have notified the Coast Guard about them. I listened all day Sunday to the local news and didn't hear any reports of distressed boaters on the lake. My question is, should I have called somebody in the middle of the night to let them know about these guys? What was my responsibility in this situation?
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