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Old 11-12-2011, 13:48   #16
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Re: Sad ARC News

That's a very contingent situation, however. Corpses can get hugely unpleasant very quickly in ways I will refrain from describing here. In this case, removing the body wasn't necessary due to the distance to landfall. If they were further away, and there was no merchant or military shipping near enough to assist, I wouldn't have blamed them for opting for a sea burial.

There may have been legal implications, however, beyond the emotional ones concerning next-of-kin, etc.

Does anyone know if mariners in international waters are legally obliged to keep a dead body aboard? I'm not asking this out of a morbid sense of curiosity, but because if you had a crew aboard who passed while going on the 30 day passage between Panama and the Marquesas, between days 12 and 20, it would be likely impossible to remove a body off the boat.

I have no idea if there's a protocol or even guidance on this. Who the hell would you even ask? Your own government? The government of the deceased? The government of the nearest country that had even a shot at SAR resources to retrieve the corpse?

I have to wonder if several tens of thousands of dollars would be spent in such an operation, frankly.
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Old 11-12-2011, 14:29   #17
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Re: Sad ARC News

When I was in the merchant navy, a long time ago (sixties) I believe the Shipmasters Book Of Common Prayer included a burial at sea service. There was only one instance on a ship I was on where someone died at sea. His body was put in the walk-in freezer and he was buried at the next port which was in India. It was a bit ironic as he had served a long time for a shipping line that ran from UK to India. He did not like India and whenever we called there he would not bother to go ashore.

I don't know how one could now conduct a burial at sea nowadays as ships don't even have hatchboards now.
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Old 11-12-2011, 14:47   #18
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Re: Sad ARC News

In Canadian waters you need a permit to conduct a burial at sea and to get a permit you need certification that they were disease free. Apparently they strongly discourage it.

If you were in international waters the problem would be that the death needs to be registered. You could find yourself being investigated for wrongful death and then wrapped up in a mess of red tape.

On another tack; sailors spend a lot of time on their feet working with their upper body. This is a recipe for heart attack. We all need to make sure we get some brisk walking in every day when we can.
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Old 11-12-2011, 21:30   #19
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Re: Sad ARC News

40 circuits of the sidedecks...go!
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