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Old 09-25-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Sorry, but I must strenuously disagree...

What rules should yachtsmen be excused from, simply because they choose to partake in a purely RECREATIONAL endeavor on the world's oceans, CHOOSING to sail short or singlehanded? Should private pilots likewise have similar courtesies granted to them, because their tiny Pipers or Cessnas are more subject to turbulence, thus making the delicate constitutions of their pilots more susceptible to airsickness? (grin)

I can only imagine the sort of scorn with which most professional mariners would greet such a plea for special status... Especially, in an age where they are being expected to pluck distressed yachties from their plastic toys with ever-increasing frequency... Not to mention, where some are demanding (as was seen here in the Loss of TRIUMPH thread) that merchant vessels participating in the AMVER program need to get their act together, and undergo far more rigorous training in order to properly do so...

Their bemusement would likely pale in comparison, however, to that of many of my all-time voyaging heroes - people like the Smeetons, Hiscocks, or Roths, who epitomized self-sufficiency and the acceptance of personal responsibility for their choices, embraced the risks of putting to sea on a small boat, and indeed would have been embarrassed to have such special consideration requested on their behalf...
I understnad your comments, Jon, however, I still believe that is wrong.

You said:
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Sorry, but I must strenuously disagree...

What rules should yachtsmen be excused from, simply because they choose to partake in a purely RECREATIONAL endeavor on the world's oceans, CHOOSING to sail short or singlehanded?
First of all, this isn't recreational for me or the majority of the sailors that go to sea. You can call it recreation if you want for how you do it, maybe. THis is my life and this is how I live. THis vessel is my home, and the sea my yard. SHould I have lived in a home on land, would your interpretation be different? I live on the sea, full time, with my family. It is no more recreational for me or the many other F/T cruisers and LA's than a house is to land dwellers. Please save the word "recreational" for the Sea Ray folks who come down on the weekends or those who don't take this seriously. I certainly do and so do the singlehanders/couples of the world that cruise. I also take safety very seriously.

Second, unless conscription has come back into the world and they forgot to tell me, every man and child on the sea is there by choice. Some get paid for it. Others dont. None of us has any more right to be at sea than the other. I sure don't believe that a commercial vessel has any more right, or a large company just because they are trying to make money off of it or it is the cheapest way for a large company to move goods. SO to be clear, everyone out there is CHOOSING to do this... be they a company, a private vessel's family, or a professional mariner on a super tanker.

As far as those who CHOOSE to do it alone, they are doing the best they can with what they have and are really a risk to no one but themselves or others who singlehand and do not stand a f/t watch. So, do we deny them access to the oceans beacuse they have no friends, or don't have have the money to hire a captain and crew to go with them, or wish solitude?? If they CHOOSE not to keep a watch, in a reasonable fashion, then they know the risks they impose on themselves. However, the ONLY way I see two vessels, within reason, hitting each other is if they both were shirking their watch duties. How else would you explain it, Jon? In such a case, they must both live with the consequences. However, I fault neither where they are both doing the best to their vessels abilities at that time.

THird, do I believe that commercial vessels should live up to the fullest extent of the rules and obey them, even where I believe that some "yachties" (using your word), do not? Yes. Yes, I do. As a commercial vessel, your ability to inflict significant damage to property, damage to the environment, and death is exponentially greater than that of a 18000 lb sailboat under sail or motor. You are being paid and the company has a responsibility to its passengers, vendors (cargo), and the environment as a whole which we as "yachties" simply cannot relate to. Examples? The Concordia? Exxon Valdez? The Titanic? THe sea is filled with ships whose crews/captains have done something stupid and caused loss of life, property, and the environment. Worst case scenario, I stike a cargo vessel, I die and his paint is scratched. My 45 gallons of diesel into the sea would be a joke. A cargo vessel striking another cargo vessel or tanker... that is a large loss of life, property, and a massive environmental disaster. So... do I believe they should live to a much higher standard? Yeah, I do. Sorry. Apparently, since you can't just hop on a oil tanker and sail her across the sea without a lot of licensing (yet you can drive a 2 million dollar sea ray and never even been on the water before), there must be some truth to my reasoning.


Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Should private pilots likewise have similar courtesies granted to them, because their tiny Pipers or Cessnas are more subject to turbulence, thus making the delicate constitutions of their pilots more susceptible to airsickness? (grin)
I have no idea. I am not a pilot. I don't understand your analogy at all and how that compares to singlehanders on sailboats and commercial vessels?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
I can only imagine the sort of scorn with which most professional mariners would greet such a plea for special status... Especially, in an age where they are being expected to pluck distressed yachties from their plastic toys with ever-increasing frequency...
Why would they scorn us? Their ability to damage or kill others is exponentially higher than ours... so much so it is hardly worth comparring. I consider myself a professional in what I do. I would think you do to. This is not about special status, this is about doing what is at their ability to do with what their vessel has on board. We are not commercial vessels. We are very small, private yachts and of zero risk to them. And again you make this anaology to a toy. This is my home. It is not a toy or a child's play thing.

As far as plucking us out of the sea, do you honestly believe that has anything to do with the number of people keeping watch on the boat? Come on. THe reason they respond to more distress calls is because of the advent of the EPIRB or similar devices that can actually save lives via reporting emergencies. Do they actually scorn a fellow sailor who will die without their help? DO they really get mad because they had to divert their course to save a life(s)? I sure wouldn't. I would be happy to help. THe role being reversed, and a merchant ship was going down Jon, would you divert to help them? Would you be happy to do it? I would. That is a part of the common bond we all have with the sea and helping out another human being is part of just being human. If they have a problem with helping save someone's life, assuming it would not endanger their own, then their problems go a lot deeper than how many people are on watch on the private vessel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Their bemusement would likely pale in comparison, however, to that of many of my all-time voyaging heroes - people like the Smeetons, Hiscocks, or Roths, who epitomized self-sufficiency and the acceptance of personal responsibility for their choices, embraced the risks of putting to sea on a small boat, and indeed would have been embarrassed to have such special consideration requested on their behalf...
If they went to sea under the current COLREGs, they were likely breaking the law... especially as a couple or singlehanders. That is my issue. If you go out on your boat Jon by yourself (I assume you have been out of the slip by yourself, right?), and you have to take a crap, or get a drink, take a leak, or fix lunch - then when you leave that helm you are technically in voilation of the COLREGS. You are NOT keeping a proper watch. THe large commercial vessel can call up someone to take the helm and likely has others on the bridge. They should. They better! The typical cruiser does not have that type of crew. So your COLREGS have now put them into a point of violation when they are doing the best they can with what they have. Or would we stop all crusiers and cruising now too because of a set of laws that were really written with the commercial vessel (and crew) in mind?

I most certainly accept personal responsibility as do most of the singlehanders. Like I said, the only way that two vessels collide is if both vessels were failing to keep a proper watch. In fact, I believe you are very wrong on another point to... I suspect most of the famous singlehanded sailors of old would be embarrased to think that a sailors's right to go to sea by himself in his boat was taken away If I were them, I would probably say, "Thank God I got to do it when I did." I bet the sailors of old would have never thought a day would come when a man's right to sail the oceans singlehanded was being compromised because others feel it is unsafe... the same others that are probably, at one time or another, breaking the exact same law.

Brian
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