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Old 05-09-2011, 10:12   #1
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Not Lost at Sea Yet

I just got a message on Facebook from the mother of a friend. She was wondering if I had seen them in my travels because she hadn't heard from them in four days. I checked the weather conditions for the bottom of Sicily (where they were last heard from) and saw that the conditions right now are benign. Does anyone know how to check the weather for a few days ago?

I know it is a worry to non-sailors so I wrote a few paragraphs explaining how capable they were and that sometimes people have non emergency problems or lack of communications when people are at sea. I also think about how things go went when Zeehag missed turning on her electronic monitor. What is the proper amount of time to not get worried? I don't think there is a proper answer to this questions but it Depends on:

1) Past communications history. (If you are used to being contacted once a week and they miss two weeks it is worse then if you were expecting them to communicate everyday and they miss two days)
2) Where in the world they are. (Are they in the straights of Malaca or cruising thru the French Riviera)
3)Weather conditions in the area. (Are there hurricanes or typhoons to worry about)
4)How long they are over due. (Being overdue 1 day from an afternoon trip is worse then one day from a week long passage etc)
5)The length of the trip they were about to embark on. (Very similar to the one above)

Does anyone have anything else they would like to add to the list or be willing to share benchmarks they use as to when to be worried?
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:22   #2
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

Maybe teach mom how to use UGRIB, or something similiar. It would probably ease her mind to see the weather herself. & tell those pesky kids to check in more often........i2f
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:30   #3
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

Check out the "History & Almanac" (near bottom left)
HerePalermo, Italy Forecast : Weather Underground
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:31   #4
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

length of trip in predicted days/hours as opposed to miles.....
if they have a spot device, they do know how to push the emergency button--if that isnt pushed, should be ok-- sometimes ye forget to push the renewal daily, as i did--i forgot to check the lil lights to see if it was still tracking nicely....oops..but i didnt push emergency button...if no spot, then is moot...
i have a friend who sails sans engine to catalina from sd and says--"if i am not heard from in a week, then call, but not before then."....
nothing else comes to my feeble brane today....is a good list
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:31   #5
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

mobile phone connectivity is pretty good along the s coast of sicily,but once you jump off for greece or sardinia 3-4 days to be out of touch is pretty normal,for malta,24-36 hrs,off the coast of libya id be worried.......
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:32   #6
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
What is the proper amount of time to not get worried?
Before every passage I email my family and give them an Overdue date.
I NEVER EVER EVER tell them when I think I will arrive!

My Overdue is worked out by doing the passage at 2 knots. So if its a 2,600nm passage (trans Atlantic) = 54 days

If its a short passage say 300 miles the Overdue will will be 1 day + 2 knots = 7 days.


The way I work that 2 knots and the 1 extra day is:

1 day to clear the decks, wait for the storm to pass etc, fix a jury rig etc.

2 knots: Most of my passages are downwind cruising route passages in the tropics. I feel reasonably confident to make a jury rig that can go down wind, down current at 2 knots.


Steve Callagan crossed the Atlantic in 76 days in his rubber raft, 2,600nms.

Finalyy: Why not give mum any other date except for the Overdue date? Because they worry immediately and call out the coast guard 2 days after you 'expected' to be in.
My last Trans Atlantic I expected it would take 21 days. It took 30. But my Overdue date was 60 days If I had told Mum 21 days she would have been having kittens 1 week after!



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Old 05-09-2011, 10:33   #7
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Check out the "History & Almanac" (near bottom left)
HerePalermo, Italy Forecast : Weather Underground
Thanks Gord I will pass that info on.
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:35   #8
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

I like it Mark. Makes sense. Do you have comms on your long passages?
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:41   #9
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
I like it Mark. Makes sense. Do you have comms on your long passages?
Only if I yell very loudly.

I have an EPIRB.
For one year of the 3 I had a sattelite phone and SMSing was excelent.

But one only needs an EPIRB.



I'm interested to see what other folks do for an Overdue date
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:42   #10
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

for overdue date, i do much as you do , mark.... underestimate and double...my momma is older and needs her blood pushed around her veins and arteries--i have to mortify her regularly. she is why i have spot.
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Old 05-09-2011, 14:41   #11
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Re: Not Lost at Sea Yet

We normally tell those who overworry the timeframe we expect to be out of reach. Then immediately after arrival, we try to email everyone informing of our whereabouts.

In many years of sailing, we were wrong only one time.

So, my guess is, being realistic about what we say to others about our timelines is one of the things that we can do to help others worry less.

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Old 05-09-2011, 15:01   #12
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Folks only know I've gone when I get there usually...
except customers...
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