Originally Posted by chucklesR
Now opinion time:
I think sailing at all in a squall is bad mojo - a down burst can hit from any direction at any time. You can literally be hove to one minute and beam on the next second (followed by broached, then poached). You can't heave to on most boats adequately in the varying wind speeds of a squall - most boats require fine tuning the sail/rudder trim.
What do you think MTBF on boat motors is? Anything that makes it quit running is a failure, even running out of gas. I have not been able to find anything exact, but the wide range of estimates I found says 300 hours is good and 20 hours is poor. Others have pointed out that gas sloshing around in rough conditions can stir up sediment. My point is that having the engine quit on you is not an incredibly rare event.