Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Melbourne, Florida
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With all due respect, I have to disagree with the 'freak accident' discription of this, or any other similar incident of this nature. I'm not sure I even buy into the 'accident' term. A conscience, premeditated decision was made by someone to engage autopilot and leave the helm(or otherwise become so distracted) of the boat with no REQUIRED lookout. This scenario may or may not have been the case, but HOW else can you explain what happened. I can't imagine anyone of average intelligence not seeing or even considering running over a 35' sailboat while at the helm. This mindset is right up there with the once accepted practice of killing someone(well at least the lack of any REAL consequences) while driving an automobile intoxicated...."Sorry, I was drunk and was just having fun, I really didn't mean too"! The at fault gets a $50 dollar fine(some of us older guys remember those days) and the family of the deceased is left with a lifetime of grief. Thank god for MADD!
Until this kind of irresponsible behavior is met with SERIOUS jail time and wealth taken from the 'responsible', IMO this type of incident will just continue. Yeah, I'm sure who ever was driving the boat feels just terrible, but other than loosing a heap of cash, the beat goes on for him. But I'm sure Mr. Walsh, after working all his life to achieve retirement, had some other interests to explore.
As someone that was almost rundown by a sportfish with no watch at the helm, almost killed by a guy that ran a red light by 3 sec., who watched my wife being cut out of the wreckage while Mr. Mocho commented to the investigating officer that "I thought I could MAKE IT" and was almost 'T' boned and run off the road by a guy that was too ingrossed in the inside of his nose, I have absolutely no sympathy for these unthinking @$$holes!
Our only defense seems to be to keep a close watch for the "OTHER" guy and the stupidity that some are capable of. Yes, the sport of boating can't be beat as a form of relaxation but one can NEVER, EVER let the 'guard' down.
This incident is a very sad commentary on some of the boating public's attitude on safety...or the lack of. Heart felt sympathies to Mr. Walsh's family and friends.
Sorry...this kind of story just FRIES me....End of rant.
Be Careful Out There!
Last edited by fullkeel7; 07-20-2008 at 03:59 PM.
Reason: mis sp