Out of his Canoe

jollyjacktar

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I have just seen a TV news clip about a Dr Watson [I presume, may not have the name right] who was paddling about in the Solent somewhere and fell out of his tiny little sea going canoe and could not get in again. After first telephoning his mum on his cell phone [she was out], then his dad in Bulgaria, who only got half the message but enough to contact life service in the UK, he managed to get rescued by a hellicopter run by a sea life service. I am pleased for him, that he was saved BUT!

I pose some serious thoughts. If he was an Eskimo and this happened would he be saved? Should he have been left to the elements and the fate of the gods, would this have detered this twit and others of his ilk? Doesn't he know the proper Eskimo "appeal to the gods juju ceremony"? Why did he have his phone with him, did he expect to answer to a house call? Why did he not have the sea search and rescue contact number in the telephone memory? Did he try to contact the RAC? If he can not do an Eskimo Roll and be unable to get back in his canoe at sea, should he be allowed out of the swimming pool? Did he make a generous donation to the rescue organization? Were there any other vessels in the area, did they see him? If he was that much alone did he not consider for one moment that he may have been out of his depth and perhaps be a little more safety conscious and sought shelter earlier? What happened to his canoe, on the TV news it was left floating, has it come ashore in South America yet? The gods must have been with him, or at least the cell phone company? Is there and an advertising angle in this?

Oh the folly of youth and the expanse of the wallet. Without either he would not have gone to sea nor would he have been rescued!
 

jac

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To misquote Arthur Ransome - As he was a duffer he should have drowned!

Stories like that and the recent story about some lunatic getting rescued loads of times by the RNLI whilst trying to raise funds for them make me wonder whether licenses may not be a good idea. I hate the idea of them but there seem to be far too many afloat who know nothing (sorry speedboat owners) and have no pride in their own seamanship.
 

BarryD

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jac - I agree. You need a licence to drive, one to fly etc.. some basic competancy test must be created for anyone wanting to go out side of inland waters. Unless they are with a school / instructors etc...

It should cover things like: Weather, Tide actions, Current actions, Signals for distress, How to get assistance, Insurance (salvage liability), basic Life Saving, even how to swim might be handy etc..

Barry D.
 

jac

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Barry why limit it to outside inland waters?

I remember approx 25 years ago sailing with my father on his old felicity on the Norfolk Broads. We got hit by a large fast moving hire cruiser whilst trying to beat into a rather fickle wind. never did get the dent out of the pulpit.

I think the problem is that we all think that we are good enough - it is the others that aren't. Where do you draw the level of competency ? YM ocean? Day Skipper?

The industry will want the level as low as possible, the government and RNLI as high as possible. The alternative is setting minimum equipment levels but look at the mess New Zealand got into with that. With any of these we will get caught in the middle and have to pay for what should be the freedom of the sea.
 

BarryD

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Jac - Not easy. But inland water-ways tend to be slower (as I was once told if you're going to hit someone hit them slowly) so a bit safer. The limit could be set on a permit basis or on a length one maybe?

Sorry to hear you were hit by a hire boat, in that situation prehaps the hire company (which holds insurance) could certify the boat for use by the inexperienced skipper?

I agree that this is not an easy one to resolve - and I'm too much of a newbie to really know all the angles (so don't flame me!). However for starters and for minimum:

Third party insurance required for any craft over 7'
Day Skipper theory licence required for anyone with a craft over 12'
Day Skipper standard licence required for anyone to operate in coastal waters unless they are building hours for the practical.
ICC (night skipper) required for anyone to operate a craft over 33'
Harbour / Marina masters empowered to verify certificates and levy fines

12 month lee-way from act to en-forcement. Plenty of time to qualify etc.., RYA discounts exam / licence issue fees for the first 18mths.

Barry D.
 

pete

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Licenses would just be the thin end of the wedge, next it will be tax discs ect ect (just like the yearly vhf radio license) more expence with no return. dont give the goverment any more ideas.
 

jac

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Licenses

Don't get me wrong - I don't want licenses any more than the next man. I have visions of Coast guards hiding behind buoys and pouncing on anyone passing to see if the paperwork is in order and any system that is introduced will be flawed (How cynical?)

But what is the answer? Let them drown? Rescue them and fine them for being stupid? or carry on rescuing them for nothing and let the RNLI risk their lives?
 

BarryD

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So ccscott49 you feel that un-licenced partially trained boaters are better than a system whereby some initial degree of competency is assured? Who is the idiot? Suggest something better? A single engined helicopter costs about £150 per hour, throw in some crew, another engine, a couple of boats, someone to co-ordinate and a simple rescue can easily cost thousands of pounds. Of course this should be free that is your right (consider growing up everything costs).

A friends moored cruiser was hit by a skiff (or something like that) ripped the ariel off, and scored the planking and buggered a water vent. A quick wave, of the hand and a shout of sorry - then the sail boat headed off. Leaving a couple of hundred pounds worth of damage. Very nice, now being licensed may not have stopped the accident but it would have givne some insurance and a way of tracing the idiot.

Barry D.
 

jac

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To defend ccscot49, BarryD your argument is loosing any cohesion. In your post when you suggested licenses you stated day skipper theory would be enough for anyone with a boat betwwem 12 and 33 feet.

I have a day skipper theory book with me (my girlfriend is revising) and it doesn't mention anything about how to control a boat when it is about to broach or how not to broach in the first place. It doesn't mention how to beat to windward against a foul tide in an efficient manner. You get that with experience and even then still get it wrong but both situations could easily catch the inexperienced out.

Get people out on the water with a piece of paper saying they know the theory and they are in for a big surprise the first time their boat suddenly decides to go one way when they want to go the other. That is where damage occurs and people get into trouble.

The coastguard salaries are paid anyway. i agree that the chopper costs would be an incremental cost but I understand that S&R have to do so many flying hours a month anyway. If it's not spent rescuing then they have to practise and as a tax payer I would rather they were saving lives rather than buckets and fenders or whatever they use. The issue with the rescue is the risk to life - remember penlee.

If you introduce licenses we will have to pay for them. We will not be safer. The RNLI will not be any safer. We will have just created more buerocracy (?) and given more power to HM government.
 

Boatman

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The debate about licences will go on forever, I have very mixed views about whether it is any good. I sail in Europe and require an ICC, I powerboat in Switzerland where I require a Licence. The idiots of the local variety who also have licences in both areas that I see don't seem better sailors / seamen(women) as a result of having taken an exam. If anything they are worse since they have the attitude that I know it all I have a Licence. As a last comment the only reason I took the dam exams was that if I didn't I was going to get arrested at some point or in the case of the Swiss fined (alot)
 

jollyjacktar

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Best solution.

I have just read all the threads and all in all I think that the most effective comntrol is the Juju ceremony. Legislation won't do it.
 

jac

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Re: Best solution.

Alternative solution

Exocet Missile. See someone you think is an idiot - blow them out of the water. Good for the defence industry as well.
And boat builders.
 
G

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Re: Eskimo Roll

A real Eskimo would have simply rolled the "kayak" using an Eskimo roll, the equivalent of a 360 knockdown in sailing terms. The water would be too cold for fluffing around with mobile phones, but a quick wave of the paddle would have brought his mates to the ice shelf on there land-style jet skis.

Yotties are not the only people who swan about on the water.
 
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