Originally Posted by Shinook
I don't think survival is the issue. Sure they could have survived, but what's the difference in risk levels between abandoning ship and continuing the trip without a rudder? Is it REALLY worth it?
If their only option was to continue, I'm sure they would have survived, there have been plenty of incidents where people in this same situation have either jury rigged a rudder or survived without. I don't really think survival is the issue, but the level of risk they assumed changed when their rudder broke.
But shouldn't a cruiser have some idea what they are going to do as a backup before they ever leave port ? These things do happen, hulls get holed or stopcocks start leaking, engines stop working, sails get ripped, masts fall down, boats lose electricity and electronics, and rudders break. Should any of those things automatically mean leaving the boat ? These are the kinds of things that have happened throughout the history of sailing, do you sacrifice your entire boat just because the rudder is screwed up ?
I'm not saying it'll work, that any backup plan will work, but it seems like we should all have some idea what we're going to do if those kinds of things happen, something we can try, right ? Or is it just, hey, we've got insurance, hit the EPIRB!