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post #849 of Old 11-21-2012
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Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...

Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post
Sorry, but you're playing games with the numbers. The chart you show is not total number of SAR missions, it's the number that involve the Cpspas-Sarsat system. Basically the chart shows growth in the implementation of that system, not a growth of the overall number of SAR missions.

The RITA data that MarkofSeaLife linked shows quite definitively that there has been a dramatic reduction of SAR missions

So while it may initially seem plausible that "false security" of electronics is leading to more accidents, it is not true. In fact, the statistics would seem to show the opposite - that the new technology is making people safer and helping them to avoid accidents. And when accidents happen, the likelihood of successful rescue goes up.

So maybe we should tone down the rhetoric a bit. Safety is getting better, not worse. Fewer incidents are happening. Fewer people are dying. Technology is a good thing.

I'll repeat my prior suggestion that TV shows, proliferation of camcorders and camera phones, and the instantaneous publicity of incidents by the blogosphers makes it SEEM like there are more incidents, but the data prove that there are actually fewer.
As I have explained on my previous post those statistics relate to all SAR missions and the vast majority had nothing to do with cruising boats in deep water.

On other hand the statistics I wave posted regards Epirb deployment, the vast majority regarding boats or ships and even if you cannot differentiate ships, fishing boats and pleasure crafts, I am quite sure that ships and fishing boats are not having more accidents but lesser, so if the numbers are increasing that can only mean more deep water pleasure boat accidents.

Regarding pleasure boats carrying an epirb offshore that is mandatory by law in almost all (I din't know if it is mandatory in the UK) European countries for more than 10 years. I don't know if it is mandatory in the US but nobody in its right mind will cross an Ocean or make a long passage without one so I guess those numbers are reliable in what regards an increase in accidents.

Let me point out that I consider electronic aids a very good help to navigate. That is not the point. The point is that I consider that help makes many to consider that now it is easy to sail to any place and that can induce a false sense of security that leads unprepared sailors to attempt passage that they would not have tried if they had do not that help. But the sea has not changed and is as dangerous with electronics or without electronics. Electronics just made more easy to navigate, not more easy to sail in bad weather.


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