Re: Why All the Absurd Circumnavigation Threads?
Digital media has raised awareness of SAR events. Technology has resulted in greatly improved emergency notifications and responses. That does not mean that circumnavigators are a burden to society.
And people who are just chatting on forums and dreaming about it, we're only wasting a byte or two....
I am not so sure about the existence of SAR data relevant to this particular discussion, involving these specifics:
The USCG publishes SARS statistics, which I believe includes marine, aviation and PLB, commercial and recreational, offshore and inland, sailboats and powerboats. I would agree, in general, boating is safer and there are fewer overall SARs for the USCG. The general decline in gross numbers, which might simply reflect the improved safety of all vessels, inland boater safety education, and improvements in communications, do not necessarily reflect a specific trend in offshore, recreational sailboats.
(Knowing the government and the impulse to report favorably on an agency's success, I would also assume there have been changes in definitions, response methods and timing, and data gathering that have influenced how many SARs are reported, just as almost every other government statistic has been reworked. e.g. unemployment statistics, GDP, inflation, COLA, etc. We live in a golden age of successful govt.)
My hat is off to the brave members of the USCG SAR, who do a great job for us all.