I propose we give the sailing Darwin Awards to everybody who stayed on their boats thru Sandy ( I mean those in Sandy's zone of damage). If you stay aboard, nobody thinks you are brave, we think you're a moron. You endanger your life, you endanger any rescuers and you make sailors in general look foolish.
PROPER HURRICANE PREP FOR SAILORS
A. Check status of your insurance policy
B. Go tie your boat down EARLY and prep it.
C. Get outta Dodge.
D. Wait a week to check on your boats status so you don't add to the confusion. It's only a boat.
There are so many variables here, that for you to make such a blanket statement makes me consider the possibility that you are merely trolling for reaction.
1. For some people, the boat is our home, and we don't abandon them lightly.
2. Individual levels of experience vary greatly. Some people have no business riding out a storm on a boat, and some people are well equipped to do so.
3. The vessels themselves vary greatly. Some are equipped to ride out storms, and some are not.
4. There is a risk vs. gain formula to be considered. After a certain level of risk, I am prepared to abandon the boat vs. the liklihood of saving it. (this is pre-storm, not during)
I know that a hurricane that comes up on the EAST side of the Chesapeake Bay, will push water OUT of the Bay due to the northerly winds, so that all I need to contend with is the wind intensity. I am in a hurricane hole, sheltered on 3 sides by tall bluffs. I can choose to stay in my slip, transfer to a mooring, or anchor as suits the conditions.
If the storm comes up to the WEST of the Bay, then I will have to contend with a large tidal surge, and the entire equation changes. I will evaluate the storm speed, intensity, etc. I will prepare the boat as best I can, strip her down, and leave her to her fate.
As you can see, the thought process isn't nearly as simple as you make out.
Then again, since I rode out the storm, my words hold no credibility and are not worthy of consideration.