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· Super Fuzzy
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Whenever there's a discussion everyone accuses everyone else of being an armchair sailor! I shudder to think of the backlash when certain "informed and qualified members" are chosen over other "informed and qualified members" to provide analysis.

Andrew's at the dentist today. I'll let him know that he's nominated to get this endeavor off the ground.
They stopped burning witches didn't they ? Too soon in my opinion.

Possibly a good idea ... the thread not the consuming by fire of Donna you fools ..... but the implementation may be troublesome. hmm ... well that could also apply to the Bonfire of the Dragonn Lady I suppose but sticking to the subject .....

If there were publicly available reports or a relatively concise round up that we could link to then I'd figure the idea might have legs. Maybe there could be a locked thread to which Mods could posts but others would need to alert us to the availability of the material. I doubt any of us have the time or the inclination to go searching for such info. Not at all sure it warranted. Lets see how this thread looks in a month or so.

Meanwhile lets see if Donna floats.
 
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· Bombay Explorer 44
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BTW- I've yet to figure out a way to get to the Caribe or back without crossing the western north Atlantic gyre. I've yet to find an insurance company that will let me be in the Caribe from june 1 to nov 1. So think many are forced to cross the stream twice a year when gales/storms may occur.
Pantaenius will the last time I checked.
 

· Sailboat Reboot
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Let me answer the question posed in your post headline - How dangerous? There is no way of knowing what goes on in other's minds so your question is unanswerable. However, let me make a few observations as one who has crossed the North Atlantic twice - single handing once and with a crew the second time. (Remember that the North Atlantic goes all the way down to the equator - so crossing from the Canaries to the Caribbean is "crossing the North Atlantic.")

Let me first distinguish between "danger" and being unprepared. Loss of a boat and/or crew that does not have proper equipment properly maintained has little to do with the location other than the proximity of rescue services. When (not if) things break there has to be the ability to recover. Hopefully on a well prepared boat only a few things will break and one is able to overcome - not so much on an ill prepared boat.

"Danger" on the other hand is somewhat random. I crossed the Atlantic eastbound (in other words at the higher latitudes) during the "preferred" weather window of June/July. Almost the entire trip I was hugging the south boundary of the route while a succession of gales and one unseasonable and unusual mid-ocean hurricane passed to the north. I had daily or twice daily contact with shore based weather routers who kept me out of the worst of it. I still had to deal with 45 knot winds and scary seas. In another year or perhaps another month the trip might have been a cakewalk. Given that it took (including stops at Bermuda and Azores) 44 days from Florida to Portugal no long range weather forecast was going to help me. My point again is that how the weather is going to develop over a long passage is quite random.

I have read my fair share of vessel lost stories and the common factors in all are either weather or stupidity - sometimes both. I was in Miquelon Island. Next to me was a couple that had cruised for many years. One morning I noticed that they were getting ready to get underway. Since we had been stuck in Miquelon for several weeks waiting for a weather window I immediately went down and checked the weather forecast. It was for 45 knot winds and 15 to 20 foot seas in the Cabot Strait. They set off for Sidney, NS. I figured that with all of their experience they might know something I did not so I set sail for Halifax. Within a hour I knew I was in serious trouble so abandoned the attempt. Unfortunately going back into Miquelon was not something I wanted to do so I just headed south toward better weather. (I am here so you know I survived.) A few weeks later I got an email from the couple. It said "when we were in the Cabot Strait we had 45 know winds and 20 to 25 foot seas. They ripped the dinghy off the transom, caused significant damage to the transom, shredded the mainsail and the jib, and caused significant additional damage to the standing rigging." Not surprising - after all that is exactly what the weather forecast predicted.

You are welcome to lobby for a "boats lost thread." I suggest you have subforums for weather, stupidity, and weather and stupidity. I for one would not find such a thread particularly useful.

Fair winds and following seas :)
 

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Beneteau 393
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Hang on a second.... If the Original Poster just wants news reports on sinkings etc, why doesnt he just look in the Missing, Lost forum at any thread and then Google the boat name? Why have a Moderator google it for him?




Mark
 

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Hang on a second.... If the Original Poster just wants news reports on sinkings etc, why doesnt he just look in the Missing, Lost forum at any thread and then Google the boat name? Why have a Moderator google it for him?

Mark
After some PMs, I think he wants a more comprehensive forum. For now, we have the new forum that you suggested and the mods will see if we can use that as the foundation.
 

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This might upset some , but...I beleive it is the responsibility of every skipper to ensure the safety of his own boat and crew. How dangerous? for me the fact that lives are lost on a somewhat regular basis should be sufficient warning as to the level of danger and prompt me to take appropriate precaution. This is almost my entire reasoning for joining forums like this. To be as well infomed and prepared as possible. education and practice can help minimize the risks, but they will always be there. Knowing when to sail a particular area is part of proper planning. Making certain the boat is prepared and capable of any passage is also part of proper seamanship.
 

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This might upset some , but...I beleive it is the responsibility of every skipper to ensure the safety of his own boat and crew. How dangerous? for me the fact that lives are lost on a somewhat regular basis should be sufficient warning as to the level of danger and prompt me to take appropriate precaution. This is almost my entire reasoning for joining forums like this. To be as well infomed and prepared as possible. education and practice can help minimize the risks, but they will always be there. Knowing when to sail a particular area is part of proper planning. Making certain the boat is prepared and capable of any passage is also part of proper seamanship.
I shouldn't think it would upset anyone. Skipper responsibility isn't being argued. I don't think sailing itself has become more dangerous. I think between social media and news media more people can get a glimpse of the lifestyle from their living rooms and think how hard can it be? Then those same social media and news outlets are there to broadcast the tragic outcome.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 · (Edited)
How Dangerous?

While reliable statistics are hard to find and verify it appears that since November 2013 at least 10 boats have sunk or been disabled in the Western North Atlantic north of the line between Cape Hatteras and Bermuda...5 in the Salty Dawg (may be less but the thread is so long that getting reliable numbers from it is very hard), the Alpha 42, the boat 350 miles offshore I think reported by Mark and 3 apparently crossing the Atlantic on the northern route during the last 4-5 weeks, Cheki Rafiki, Tao and Blue Pearl.

It is probably impossible to know the number of cruising boat that have crossed through those waters either sailing 'down Island' or crossing the Atlantic but 1000 might be a reasonable estimate if we exclude organized races but include rallies.

10 boats in 1000 is 1% and a very high percentage for a recreational sport. It is very high when you consider that some of the sailors are older couples with limited experience, uninsured boats and serious risk is presumable not part of their retirement plan.

There were 4 deaths and but for the US Coast Guard there would have been many more!

1% is not the risk as that must be assessed over several years but if the Forum developed a good 'read only' section on sailboat sinkings then perhaps the inexperienced sailors might read of the risks and decide to take the ICW and the 'Thorny Path".

Phil
 

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Phil, you trivialize the magnitude of the task and then you would conveniently foist it off on someone else.

There are 193 member states in the UN. If half of them are landlocked that still leaves some hundred marine authorities to collect reports from. To collate, index, and follow through for official explanations. A trivial task but since it "should" be done, I think you should be the one to step up and do it.

And you don't have to worry about locked threads, you can get a free web site or a free blog site and have total self- and sole control over it.

Since you're the one who says it should be done..."Physician, heal thyself!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
HelloSailor,

I am not suggesting a database kept to scientific standard but one that would collate the reports that are posted on this forum, they include almost every USCG rescue of sailboats in the North Western Atlantic since these rescues almost always are reported by the mainstream media.

It would require some organization but could easily be done within the context of the Forum.

I will write privately to Donna and get her opinion.

Phil
 

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How Dangerous?

While reliable statistics are hard to find and verify it appears that since November 2013 at least 10 boats have sunk or been disabled in the Western North Atlantic north of the line between Cape Hatteras and Bermuda...5 in the Salty Dawg (may be less but the thread is so long that getting reliable numbers from it is very hard), the Alpha 42, the boat 350 miles offshore I think reported by Mark and 3 apparently crossing the Atlantic on the northern route during the last 4-5 weeks, Cheki Rafiki, Tao and Blue Pearl.
That is a very interesting statistic as I would have expected the number from Bermuda to Portugal et al to be much higher.

I can tell you from my insurance premium that a lot of people screw up.

Fair winds and following seas. :0
 
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