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Old 07-05-2016, 17:11   #16
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Perhaps state licensing not, but state or NASBLA (National Association of State Boating Law Administrators) approved courses made a requirement definitely yes. A number of states require proof of an accredited course to pilot a boat. It varies greatly by state and age requirements. Courses are offered by several organisations such as the USPS, USCG Aux., as well as some states offering their own approved courses.
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Old 07-05-2016, 17:25   #17
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
Good. There are plenty of licensed car drivers that are idiots.
> All drivers are licensed.
> Some drivers are bad anyway.
>> Therefore licensing is useless.

> All surgeons are trained.
> Some patients die in surgery.
>> Therefore surgical training is useless.

I have no opinion regarding the stated conclusion, but take exception to this logic.
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Old 07-05-2016, 18:16   #18
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Boat/US has a free online course, it might be of interest, some courses will get you discount on insurance. I let my USCG master license expire, no reason to have a target on your back if you do not want to charge money for sailing related activities. anyway check https://elearning.boatus.org/
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Old 07-05-2016, 18:19   #19
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Myself I'd rather not be forced into having a license. California will start requiring one in 2018 ish. Luckily it will be phased in slowly so by the time I'm 73 ish. I might be too old to need it.

Mind you the licensing looks rather simplistic and I feel will do little to prevent boating injuries. Said injuries due mainly to vessels under 16' in length and alcohol. Sailboats barely even make the list.

My preference is less government, not more.
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Old 07-05-2016, 18:26   #20
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

So, don't know what level of certification people are thinking about here ...

I have the PCOC (Pleasure Craft Operator Card), required to operate any powered vessel in Canada. It required passing a multiple choice exam that covered a bunch of stuff that I would have learned anyway.

Some people say that this exam is meaningless because it's so basic only an idiot could possibly fail it.

But, on the other hand, if it keeps a few of the idiots off the water ...

Hardly relevant in this context. IMO anyone who is able to learn how to sail will have no trouble with this level of permit.
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Old 07-05-2016, 18:58   #21
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Not good.

There is no evidence that licensing will help people be more responsible about their obligations. There is licensing where we are, and it does not stop skippers from driving like idiots. Cheechako mentioned how (in)effective it is for automobiles. Licensing is usually a way for States to gain revenue. We are already taxed enough. There are so many bureaucratic hoops to jump through in life, do we really want another?

It's funny, in a way, 'cause i felt really proud, as a 16 yr. old, to get my first drivers' license, it was like a coming of age ceremony.

However, I really do think we'll see licensing for vessels over a certain length at some time, it will be another futile effort to legislate safety, probably ineffective at its goal, because the irresponsible ones will forget everything they learned to take the tests, and you'll wind up with what we have now: those who want to educate themselves, do, and the others don't know (or forgot) what to do.

Ann
Ann....That would have been my answer maybe 10 years ago.
But now with the huge number of pleasure boat operators out there who are clueless of COLREGS and safety standards, you have to reconsider whether boating should be considered a "RIGHT" or a "PRIVILEGE"?

Unfortunately, in densely populated waters, I believe that it now needs to be treated as a privilege, meaning you must first be able to prove your competency before putting yourself and others at risk.

And if a license is now needed, it can also be taken away, if the operator is proven irresponsible.
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Old 07-05-2016, 19:06   #22
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

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I feel the same way about doctors. Why should I not be able to perform surgery just because I don't have a license....

Oh wait there is a huge body of evidence that licensing does help reduce boating accidents. With most studies indicating a reduction in fatalities of about 50% by imp,I ending mandatory licensing for recreational boaters.

If you have ever seen these courses frankly if you can't pass them you shouldn't be on the water (at least for the US courses).

I am not sure we need multiple licenses, broken down by boat size and distance from shore, but a basic idea of how boats work is a good idea.
Keep your licenses in the states.. Know how many idiot licensed captains I've witnessed running over your gear, dropping where they shouldn't, drag anchor into another boat while they just stood on board watching with their mouths open or throwing a 3' wake behind 3 250 outboards as they race through an anchorage with swimmers?? Your reasons are full of hot air..
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Old 07-05-2016, 19:16   #23
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Power boats are in many people's minds like cars. Turn the key,add some throttle and turn the wheel, there we are good to go! Sailing requires a much deeper commitment and while I'm sure even in sailing there are some screw balls by and large sailors tend to be trying to learn, hence forums like this one. I agree with Jim, take out the power boaters and the jet skis and I'll bet there are few bad accidents in the sailing crowd as it's much harder to really screw up doing 5 knots, much easier at 20 knots. The license is just more taxes.
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Old 07-05-2016, 19:34   #24
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnglaisInHull View Post

Some people say that this exam is meaningless because it's so basic only an idiot could possibly fail it.
True. This idiot (me) had a 100-percent score on the basic Power Squadron test.
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Old 07-05-2016, 19:40   #25
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

For the USA lets keep in mind that the USCG issues licenses. States do not have the right to require a license. They do however have the right to require that you take and pass an educational course. They issue a boater education card.

There are a number exceptions to the need for a card. Phased in, while renting, within the first 30 days of buying etc.

Education is desirable. Licensing for commercial is desirable.
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Old 07-05-2016, 21:47   #26
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Education good. Licensing invokes the law of unintended consequences.

It's either so dumbed down as to prove nothing or so draconian that perfectly safe boaters are kept off the water. In the end it's mostly a profit making scheme that offers no safety benefits.

The MD example fails because they are finally coming to the realization that the MD licensing isn't working. PA's and NP's are taking over most of the day to day medical care. Reality is you don't need the experience of captaining a super tanker to take a row boat out on a pond.
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Old 07-05-2016, 22:02   #27
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Thinking back, when I had been sailing for a few years in the SF area, I found that if I took a basic boating safety course from the Coast Guard Auxiliary I'd get a 10% discount on my insurance. Being kinda broke at the time, I jumped at it. The course was next to useless for me... I'd learned all that stuff on my own long before, as i think most sailors would have done. There was no input from any government body and no license was issued, just a certificate to send to the insurers.

There were mostly newbies in the class (around 25 students), and they likely did learn a few things. But, they were ALL sailors - not a power boater in the lot. I think this may demonstrate a basic difference in the two groups, as others have suggested above: sailors are more likely to be interested in the sort of skills involved while all too many stinkpotters (mainly the 15-20 foot over powered open sort of stinkpots) are more interested in going fast and drinking beer. My cynical outlook says that those sorts will not be much influenced by the sort of minimal training required for these suggested licenses, and that mandating such licensing will not have all that much effect upon accident rate.

If you up the ante and have rigid requirements as do the Portugese, I'd expect some real benefits in behavior on the water. But I fear that to do so, at least in the States, would be cause for civil war. Could be wrong about that, but there would be stiff resistance, i reckon, and I think I would be amongst the resisters! There is already too much government involvement in our lives... to say nothing of the economic losses from decimating the boating population.

I'll admit that if I still sailed in congested waters like SF Bay, I might feel differently! Our cruising life allows us to mostly avoid such places...

Enough rambling...

Jim
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Old 07-05-2016, 22:04   #28
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

I can think of a couple of examples from the last year, both from the Caribbean, where a licensed captain was not paying attention. In one case, the sailboat (the stand on vessel) managed to escape with only a close call. In the other, the sailboat did not avoid in time, and the man lost his boat and his good lady.

The situation may be worse in the States than it is here: the population is less here, hence the boating population is also smaller.

I just really see no good that has come from what they have here, and no reason to think that they will do a better job of it in the States.

Ann

PS. I am a US citizen.
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Old 07-05-2016, 22:49   #29
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
I feel the same way about doctors. Why should I not be able to perform surgery just because I don't have a license....

Oh wait there is a huge body of evidence that licensing does help reduce boating accidents. With most studies indicating a reduction in fatalities of about 50% by imp,I ending mandatory licensing for recreational boaters.

If you have ever seen these courses frankly if you can't pass them you shouldn't be on the water (at least for the US courses).

I am not sure we need multiple licenses, broken down by boat size and distance from shore, but a basic idea of how boats work is a good idea.
good point there about doctors................

quote
http://www.medscape.com/medscapetoday/news

In Medscape today

Medical error is the third leading cause of death in the United States, after heart disease and cancer, according to findings published today in BMJ.
And it's not just the US. According to the World Health Organization, 117 countries code their mortality statistics using the ICD system as the primary health status indicator.
Jim Rickert, MD, an orthopedist in Bedford, Indiana, and president of the Society for Patient Centered Orthopedics, told Medscape Medical News he was not surprised the errors came in at number 3 and that even those calculations don't tell the whole story.

"That doesn't even include doctors' offices and ambulatory care centers," he notes. "That's only inpatient hospitalization resulting in errors."

"I think most people underestimate the risk of error when they seek medical care," he said.
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Old 07-05-2016, 23:00   #30
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Re: No certification or license required to own and operate a sailboat...

I don't think anyone on here has a philosophical objection to obtaining a basic operator's' awareness of safe marine practices?
The level of education being tailored to the tonnage and purpose of your being the person legally in charge.

We expect that of a tanker captain but not a sailor engaged in racing his sailboat across the path of that same tanker.

That does not seem logical to me and justification via anecdotal evidence of individual stupidity on both sides, is just a red herring in this discussion.
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