Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...
While there were so many decisions made by the Captain that were ill advised, the decsion to alter course to SW from E seemed reasonable. The ship was incapable of moving fast enough to clear such a massive storm had Bounty continued on the E heading so consequently remaining in front of that storm would have meant certain diaster. Plus rescue would have been more uncertain the further away from the coast.
Going SW allowed for a following wind and being in the SW quartant allowed for lesser wind speed due to the counterclockwise rotation and the northern heading of the cane. Plus I don't believe the Bounty ever saw hurricane force winds. My 2 cents.