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  Topic Review (Newest First)
10-19-2007 12:47 PM
arbarnhart In either case, cars or boats, while there is the random chance of a 3rd party or a freak event (that could not be reasonably expected) the skill of the operator and quality of the boat or car and the choices the operator makes have significant bearing on the statistics.
10-19-2007 12:37 PM
magnusmurphy When your car breaks down, you get out and call home on your cellphone.

When your sailboat auxillary quits, you may or may not be able to fix it and if not, that may put you in danger if you cannot sail off.

Personally I'm not a diesel machanic and never will be. I can think of many contingencies that I will not be able to handle on my own. BUT, if I have to wait till I have all that knowledge and experience, I will never be able to go out cruising, seeing that I have to work 100 hours a week. Most "dreamers" are in the same position. Those who come from mechanical or marine related backgrounds are lucky and may easily criticise those of us who feel like they have 10 thumbs when it comes to fixing certain things.

However, I might not be able to fix my own engine - BUT, if you have a medical emergency on board, you'll be damn glad I'm in your anchorage and didn't spend SO much time "getting ready" for the trip that I knew engines and nothing else!

M Murphy
10-19-2007 12:13 PM
hertfordnc I love this

"The reality is, I have a much better chance of being killed on the freeway to the marina then I will have in my boat sailing."

I'm not sure but i think that statement may not actually be true. 698 people died on boats in 2006- granted, very few were sailors, most were drunken fools in powerboats

One in 7000 Americans dies in car wrecks. I think if you run the math and compare the number of trips and the amount of time we spend in our carsversus boats, at the end of the day, cars are safer.

Very few people die sailing but really, not all that many people sail.

Back in May the Coast Guard plucked nine people off three different sailboats, meanwhile, two or theree people were lost at sea due to the same weather. Some of these folks were very experienced and well equipped.

Put another way, I'd say a driver that an experienced and well-equipped will NEVER die behind the wheel absent a third party doing something stupid.

The point is, sailing has an element of risk that can not be eliminated.
10-18-2007 05:06 PM
jimmalkin Yes - it's not always fun. Even with experience and equipment. And sometimes you wish you were drinking on the beach while the conditions have your crew/guests staring at you wondering if they should panic. Short of the mystical indestructable mast, there are a couple of other tricks that are now baked into our routine from experiences this year. Like - if you haven't replaced the dorades with their deckplates before starting to slam into 14' seas off Nantucket shoals, at least turn the buggers to face aft before the green water starts 2+ hours of sweeping the boat from stem to stern, over the trunk cabin and the dodger, filling the cockpit. We now turn the dorades aft as a matter of course prior to getting underway. Keeps it a bit dryer below.
10-18-2007 05:06 PM
magnusmurphy Another option is the setup I inherited on my boat. I have a second VHF antenna on the radarpole top, with Coax run all the way to the back of my radio, where it hangs loose. If the mast comes down, all I'll have to do is unplug the mast VHF cable and plug in the other.

I can claim no honor for this brilliant idea!

M Murphy
10-18-2007 03:44 PM
USCGRET1990 Quote:
I always chuckle when I read about all the prophets making statements to the fact that one should not call for help when you're really in trouble "out there". Their thinking seems to be that since you've brought this upon ourself, you should simply accept your fate and that's it. That's not what the initiator of this thread meant, but I've read this sentiment on Sailnet before.

If it's getting a bit rough and scary, always make the call early and let it be known while you still can. When you wait too long and the demasting puts the antenna in the water, it's just too darn late. In that most sailboats ARE dismasted in a storm, if I planned to sail bluewater, I would try to come up with an indestructable mast, tied down and fastened to the hilt. That would be a good thread to start "How to make your mast and rigging indestructable!"
10-18-2007 12:59 PM
Originally Posted by arbarnhart View Post
Yes, I was not particularly impressed, but my partner liked it for the occasional humour.
10-18-2007 12:31 PM
arbarnhart Anybody read this book?
10-18-2007 11:56 AM
Bardo I am reading "Fastnet Force 10" now, and it brings home the point pretty well. There were a lot of really well qualified sailors out there in 1979, and that didn't save the 15 crewmen who died. Sometimes its just too much. Caveat: I have no experience isailing in blue water, except from the deck of a Navy destroyer.
10-18-2007 05:00 AM
Originally Posted by magnusmurphy View Post
I always chuckle when I read about all the prophets making statements to the fact that one should not call for help when you're really in trouble "out there". Their thinking seems to be that since you've brought this upon ourself, you should simply accept your fate and that's it. That's not what the initiator of this thread meant, but I've read this sentiment on Sailnet before.

Calling because you're simply scared but not really in danger is one thing, - calling 'cause you're really in trouble is another matter entirely. I'm quite sure the spinners of such rediculous and arrogant nonsense will be just as surely grabbing for their Epirbs as everybody else, whether they first soiled their pants or not - and regardless what they wrote on websites like this.

As more and more people with relatively little experience take off cruising, rescue incidents will probably increase. It is a fact that not everyone can have the same experience or be experts in everything. The fact is that most of us work our backsides off to scrape together enough to finally get out there. If absolute mastery of all aspects and for all contingencies were preconditions to joining the cruising life, there would have been VERY few people out there.

It is also sometimes difficult or entirely impossible to determine when a situation changes from uncomfortable, to life-threatening. Since there are many families out there, the responsibility on the captain (often one of the parents in case of families) to make that determination can be very very difficult and clouded by fears for the safety of the children. Criticizing people for making decisions or determinations that their lives were in danger at a particular moment and then asking for help, even if subsequently shown not to have been the case, displays little more than an opinionated arrogance and a hyperinflated idea of personal superiority.

I'm not suggesting anyone should go out there completely unprepared and grab the Epirb at the first whiff of danger. I am however just a little bit tired of all the high-browed experts who criticise easily.

M Murphy
Well put!!!
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