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post #1852 of Old 02-23-2013
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Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...

Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post

... ..

What I want to know is where were all these experts as Bounty was preparing to head out to sea? A place like New London must have had dozens of knowledgeable captains and crew roaming the docks to prepare their craft for the approaching hurricane. They should have been telling Walbridge that he's out of his mind to go out. They should have been doing everything they could to convince Bounty's novice crew to mutiny. A ship that large can't just sneak out of the harbor unseen. They should have hopped into dinghys and followed Bounty though the harbor, yelling through megaphones what a big mistake they were making.

Tall ship captains are a small community that apparently "talks" (voice, text, and digital) among themselves a lot. If any one of them heard about Walbridge's plan ahead of time and didn't forcefully try to convince him otherwise, then they have blood on their hands too.
It seems now like everyone in that community is piling on with their hindsight about how reckless the captain was. Too bad they didn't do a little more piling on before two people lost their lives.
Captains are very independent and no subject to other authority than their boss or the CG and even so I am sure they intervene the lesser they can. Captains have a huge responsibility and to that responsibility corresponds a huge discretionary power of decision. It is supposed that they are able to exercise it with good judgement. The level of autonomy that their work demands makes that authority necessary.

I am quite sure that Captains respect that independence of judgment among them. Each know their ship, their crew and he is the only one responsible for taking decisions. Intervening with the decisions of other Captains is a thing I don't think they will do. They can think that another Captain is taking wrong decisions, they can even say so, as it was the case with the Captain of the Picton Castle, but they will respect the autonomy of other captain and will give him the benefit of the least till the moment it is obvious that the decision was very wrong and had tragic consequences.

The only ones that seem to me had the authority to prevent Walbridge to sail was the CG but even for that they had to have a strong motive. They had not inspected the ship (it was not required due to the Ship classification) and therefore ignored if the ship was sound and with all systems operational and even if the crew was well qualified or not (they had no way of demanding or inspecting that).

Finally, nobody, except the crew know that wallbridge intended to sail the Hurricane and not looking for shelter on one of the nearby Ports.

I don't like also that open letter to a dead man, but that is another story.



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Last edited by PCP; 02-23-2013 at 08:31 PM.
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