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If you'd have sailed in had you known you were going to be charged, you apparently didn't think you and your boat were in serious jeapordy - and probably shouldn't have been bothering a lifeboat organization for a tow to begin with. Their mission is to save lives, not to save you inconvenience.

Wait on a sec, sunshine. :)
It was not quite as easy as you pounce upon. My big computer won't connect to the net at the moment so I can't pull u up the chart.
I was a few hours from the change of current into the Alderney Race that flows about 9 knots. Over rocks. If I had mistimed it sailing they would have been doing a fatal recovery. So I VHF'd the French Coast Guard just to let them know I was in a spot of bother and I was assessing the situation.
The language difficulty was apparent they told me to ring back every 30 minutes.
The next 30 minute report I told them I "would probably need a tow into port". They then sent the vessel to come for me.

It was the prudent thing to do under the circumstances (by both the French and me). It wasn't a normal sailing area situation.
:)

A strong current runs through the race north of the Passage de la Déroute, a treacherous passage separating the Cotentin from the Channel Islands. The current is intermittent, varying with the tide, and can run up to about twelve knots during equinoctial tides
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alderney_Race

Up to 12 knots and you wanna second guess decisions made at the time? :grin
 

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Wait on a sec, sunshine. :)
It was not quite as easy as you pounce upon. My big computer won't connect to the net at the moment so I can't pull u up the chart.
I was a few hours from the change of current into the Alderney Race that flows about 9 knots. Over rocks. If I had mistimed it sailing they would have been doing a fatal recovery. So I VHF'd the French Coast Guard just to let them know I was in a spot of bother and I was assessing the situation.
The language difficulty was apparent they told me to ring back every 30 minutes.
The next 30 minute report I told them I "would probably need a tow into port". They then sent the vessel to come for me.

It was the prudent thing to do under the circumstances (by both the French and me). It wasn't a normal sailing area situati
Up to 12 knots and you wanna second guess decisions made at the time? :grin
Since I wasn't there, all I can go by is what you yourself said.
If I knew what the price was going to be before I agreed for them to come out I would have attempted to sail in.
I say again: if you'd have tried sailing in had you known you'd be charged for a tow, you apparently didn't think you were in THAT much danger at the time. Unless you're the rare sort who habitually makes life and death decisions based strictly on which course of action is cheaper....
 

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The story is written to invoke emotion.
It's clickbait designed to incite the typical reader of the Guardian. The first clause of the first sentence tells you all you need to know:
"The wealthy tycoons and oligarchs enjoying summer on their luxury yachts in Saint-Tropez have been warned:"

The Guardian-reading owners of sub-luxury yachts unite. You have nothing to lose but your anchor chain.
 

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By the way, Mark, I can certainly understand you feeling sandbagged by not knowing up front there'd be a charge for the tow. I think it's a wakeup call for the rest of us, that it's a good idea to do a little research specifically on lifeboat organizations, coast guard search and rescue policies, etc. when sailing into an unfamiliar area - before they're needed. Which wouldn't really have occurred to me before we started this discussion...
 

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I don't know how it works in other countries, but here in the U.S. there are a whole range of organizations that many people think of as "charities." Only a very few of them actually fit the model that most people imagine when they think of a charity. In particular, an organization that is classified as a "non-profit" is almost NEVER actually a "charity."

"Non-profit" only means that at the end of the year there is no "profit" to be distributed to owners. It does not mean that nobody is profiting. It does not mean that the organization relies on volunteers, nor that it doesn't collect fees, or even collect loads of income. In fact, a whole lot of these "non-profit" organizations maintain that status by being sure that at the end of the year their expenses equal all of their income. How do you do that? Well, one very common way is to pay big bonuses to all of your employees. Usually the guy at the top decides who gets a bonus, and he always starts with himself! That is why you hear about these "non-profit" organizations with Chief Executives who are being paid millions upon millions.

There are a lot of smart people out there who know that they can become very rich (as many others already have) by starting and running a "non-profit" organization.

Is that the case with this organization in France? I don't know. But before I contributed any money to them, I would sure as heck want to find out!
 

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By the way, Mark, I can certainly understand you feeling sandbagged by not knowing up front there'd be a charge for the tow. I think it's a wakeup call for the rest of us, that it's a good idea to do a little research specifically on lifeboat organizations, coast guard search and rescue policies, etc. when sailing into an unfamiliar area - before they're needed. Which wouldn't really have occurred to me before we started this discussion...

A bit of a dirt dweller fantasy about how it works out here.. The reality is that we have to take care of ourselves, and in the rare instance in a first world environment there might just be somebody to help out..otherwise forget about it..
 

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"“We have wasted two years to change the lifeboat because we didn’t have the money and the result is our old boat broke down and is out of action for seven weeks."
Sounds like sour grapes from a volunteer group that didn't have the necessary skills to keep their program going. Just one side of the story.
If people don't want to fund your project...either you motivate them, or you shut down. Calling them cheap or irresponsible because they don't want to fund you, doesn't accomplish anything.
 

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Wow, most of you will stop at nothing to stick up for the greed-head Big Boujees.

Go see Luis Bunell's classic "The Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie"

(sound of breath not being held)
 

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A bit of a dirt dweller fantasy about how it works out here.. The reality is that we have to take care of ourselves, and in the rare instance in a first world environment there might just be somebody to help out..otherwise forget about it..
So you think there's no point in boning up on what emergency services are available in an area, how to contact them and what they could cost, because they probably won't help you anyway?

I'm sorry; that's a pure-D dumb attitude. Do you also not bother to check weather forecasts, because they're probably wrong anyway?
 

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Wow, most of you will stop at nothing to stick up for the greed-head Big Boujees.

Go see Luis Bunell's classic "The Discrete Charm of the Bourgeoisie"

(sound of breath not being held)
It looks more like - Wow this group is really off track with their finances and needs to get things in order.

They are charging what appears to be commercial rates (possibly higher) for their services and then asking for handouts too. Something is wrong with a group that's potentially charging $2,000 to pull a moderately sized sailboat owned by a Joe Smoe with engine trouble a short distance away from the rocks (not a salvage operation or rescue by any means but just a minor assist) and then is crying about being short of funds. I don't know for sure but on the surface they sound like they are out of control of their 20 Million Euro budget and have some serious money management problems that need to be fixed. Perhaps an audit is required.
 

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Just for general information since I had a nonprofit corporation for 5 years while operating a BMX racetrack for kids in Ft Collins. The nonprofit status merely means that the assets of the corporation cannot be distributed to an individual or group of individuals. The employees of the nonprofit can be as overpaid as the directors or managers wish. Just look at the past scandals of the Red Cross. Correct me Mr. Big Hat, I am waiting for your arrogance.
 

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So you think there's no point in boning up on what emergency services are available in an area, how to contact them and what they could cost, because they probably won't help you anyway?

I'm sorry; that's a pure-D dumb attitude. Do you also not bother to check weather forecasts, because they're probably wrong anyway?

It's not Kansas Buttercup. Won't work in Sumatra, or the South china Sea or deep up a river in Borneo. Pretty much zero traffic on the VHF, no AIS signals either out here. Which language should I speak today? Bahasa Indo, Pidgen, Chinese or Thai? Nobody gonna be answering any distress call here. Cel phone coverage? When pigs fly.

Weather is settled in the SW monsoon. No forecast is going to show local land effects. Big clouds over the mountains in the afternoon, evening showers. Clean and blue, land breeze at 0200..Afternoon sea breeze at three..just like clockwork.

It's no wonder we see so few cruisers out here..
 

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Just for general information since I had a nonprofit corporation for 5 years while operating a BMX racetrack for kids in Ft Collins. The nonprofit status merely means that the assets of the corporation cannot be distributed to an individual or group of individuals. The employees of the nonprofit can be as overpaid as the directors or managers wish. Just look at the past scandals of the Red Cross. Correct me Mr. Big Hat, I am waiting for your arrogance.
Indeed, some are managed very well while others do make one take pause. The ones with big budgets that charge high fees and yet are always crying poverty do raise a red flag. The sad truth is that even those that are not run very well can be made up of very well intentioned volunteers who do provide a service to the community and the volunteers can be counted among the victims.

We just had to make a simple change which required keys to be handed out. Sounds like a simple statement until we found out they did not want a combination lock and insisted on a lock with a key since once you let someone borrow the combination you can't get it back. Now the budget has to be adjusted to allow for the $250 worth of keys to keep the budget on track and not be begging additional funding at the end of the year or raising certain fees for classes or membership.

Yes sometimes the volunteers needlessly waste stuff not thinking of how their lack of watch care just causes a loss of $X of donated funds with each incident. Someone instead of bringing a boat in to have a stiff outboard pivot cleaned up and greased can cause an unexpected $1,000 +/- expense when they eventually strip out the helm station. Price out a SeaStar Helm (cable or hydraulic) and you may go through sticker shock.

So its understood that sometimes its a battle to maintain a budget however you don't just accept carelessness and needless expenses but raise the flag on them and take appropriate actions to correct the situation with many times the cure just being simple but regular reminders about maintenance or raising awareness about small but costly errors that are being made too often.

Small leaks sink Great Ships sounds a bit cliche however it is a basic truth. You don't turn a blind eye to red ink from wastefulness or carelessness and then beg for more cash to fix it when your working with voluntary contributions. You have to fix the small leaks that are draining the budget along with the big ones.
 

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It's not Kansas Buttercup. Won't work in Sumatra, or the South china Sea or deep up a river in Borneo. Pretty much zero traffic on the VHF, no AIS signals either out here. Which language should I speak today? Bahasa Indo, Pidgen, Chinese or Thai? Nobody gonna be answering any distress call here. Cel phone coverage? When pigs fly.

Weather is settled in the SW monsoon. No forecast is going to show local land effects. Big clouds over the mountains in the afternoon, evening showers. Clean and blue, land breeze at 0200..Afternoon sea breeze at three..just like clockwork.

It's no wonder we see so few cruisers out here..
Dirt dweller? Buttercup? Why are you mocking me for reminding people about a common-sense precaution? It should have been about as controversial as saying they should file a float plan. Or don't you believe in those, either?

Finding out what emergency help is available, how to contact it and what it might cost you - before it's needed - is a perfectly sensible thing to do. And if you find there's nothing in the area that's likely to do you any good, that's worth knowing too...

You might have a point, had I suggested that such an elementary precaution is a substitute for experience, proper gear and general preparedness. But I didn't. So go lay your "I'm Popeye's bigger, smarter, stronger brother" act on someone who gives a rat's patootie; I'm not impressed.
 

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In both Canada and the US, lifeboat crews of critical stations are fairly well paid professionals. The salaries of the crew and the boats are paid for with tax dollars. Surely the government of France has a way of dealing with this shortage, if it really is a critical lifeboat station?
While the Canadian Coast Guard does have a presence in our major ports, the government relies heavily on volunteer organizations such as RCM-SAR to fill the gaps and provide support to pleasure craft. These organizations are largely funded by donations from individuals, local businesses, and yacht clubs.

It is shameful that the uber rich won't step up to support the boating community at large. Perhaps the local government needs to slap some taxes on those mega yachts to pay for the lifeboat.

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It is shameful that the uber rich won't step up to support the boating community at large.

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Beyond the presumably enormous amounts of tax that they're already paying. How much are slip fees in St. Tropez for a 100ft yacht? I'm assuming that the huge yacht brigade is an equally huge source of income for the town.
 

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This thread is going down, albeit slowly. Let's stop with the name calling and snide remarks. Please.
 
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