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Old 19-09-2011, 02:23   #16
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

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Originally Posted by Rory B View Post
Thanks guys. I appreciate the honest advice. There really are red flags going up in mind! Although to be fair they will still be working on the boat for the next three days. However the boat definitely does not give me a "safety first" vibe. The boat is brand new and has new everything including engines...but things like man over board equipment, etc are absent.
Well South african law requires all boat to have a safety certificate and they should have Category A (the highest for boats>40nm offshore), though it sounds like they don't since that requires a liferaft. Ask them what they got. Maybe they have registered the boat in Madagascar or something though. It does sound a little odd.

Keep an eye on the marine forecast at weathersa.co.za The seas between cape point and cape aguhlas can get really bad when you get the typical low pressure wind direction opposing the agulhas current. Lucky we just had one passing over so it may settle down, though there is another big one passing way south of cape town at the moment.
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Old 19-09-2011, 06:24   #17
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Okay so all said and done the summary of my situation is as follows: no life raft, no epirb, no life jackets, no jack stays or places to hook on with a safety harness, no man over board toys, open companion ways... I think I'm answering my own question here. Plus I've met the owner once and hadn't met the skipper yet. But some of you (like mr pirate flag are saying "safety haha is not in the gadgets and toys" and some of you are saying "listen guy this passage is not a joke". I'm leaning way towards the later.
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Old 19-09-2011, 06:44   #18
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

I agree that a good tender can be 'almost' as good as a liferaft but persoanly I would always prefer to have BOTH. A basic 4 man liferaft is not very expensive (got one for my cat in the UK this year for about £500) and will give you valuable shealter if the worst happens. I cant think of anything worse than being adrift in an open boat in that part of the world, the exposure would kill you a a few days.

Also, the guy is planning to put it into charter service but can do that without extra safety equipment? Seems a very laps and carefree attitude.
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Old 19-09-2011, 06:56   #19
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

lot's of cowboys operating out of nossi be' in mada,no rules,if the owner won't shell out for basic safety kit....what else has he skimped on during the build.

having sailed many times from sa to mada,the leg from sa to the bottom end of the mozambique channell can be very challenging.

may be worth asking the port captain what the regulations are and if they will give you a clearance certificate without the correct gear,have allways found them quite strict,but times have changed in sa.......
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Old 19-09-2011, 07:04   #20
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

I've read of one cruising couple who elected to go with emersion suits, one for each of them, instead of a lifeRaft. Whether this is a good Idea or accepted way by others remains to be seen.
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Old 19-09-2011, 08:14   #21
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

This is not a trip for a self-confessed "newbie" - at least two thousand miles in very treacherous waters. So I don't think well-meant advice on equipment selection is the right approach. The owner of this motor cat should find another skipper. Sorry RoryB, but I do not think you are yet ready for this command, but your questions and careful thought show that one day you will be.
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Old 19-09-2011, 13:59   #22
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

Just a random thought. I recall reading about an unsinkable boat. The name will come to me in a minute.




















Lets see I think that it was the Titanic...
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Old 20-09-2011, 11:10   #23
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

Still leaving tomorrow?

  • Updated: 20/09/2011 15:31:09
  • Warning: Take action
  • Subject: Very Rough Seas
  • Detail: Warning Valid Wednesday 21/9/2011: 1. Very rough seas with wave heights from 4 to 5m are expected between Cape Agulhas and Storms River in the afternoon.
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Old 20-09-2011, 11:17   #24
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

Alan's post is right on. This is still very late winter in those waters - gales will be expected.
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Old 20-09-2011, 17:00   #25
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

It would be a no go for me.

Sounds like another cheap bastid.
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Old 20-09-2011, 18:02   #26
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

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Okay so all said and done the summary of my situation is as follows: no life raft, no epirb, no life jackets, no jack stays or places to hook on with a safety harness, no man over board toys, open companion ways... I think I'm answering my own question here.
The boat has not been fully commissioned. It's a no-go. You'll probably be able to add considerably to the list of what it doesn't have if you get to the level of lee cloths, storm sails and a drogue.

I once turned down a delivery that had everything your ride is missing, but didn't have a radar. A friend crewed for the owner anyway, and when he got back to San Francisco he emailed, "You were right. I'd never make that trip without a radar again."
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Old 20-09-2011, 18:10   #27
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

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list of what it doesn't have if you get to the level of lee cloths, storm sails and a drogue.
Just fyi, according to the OP, it's a motorboat ("motorcat")!

And also just fyi on other poster's comments, the strategy (as I understand it) for getting east from Cape Town in this sort of vessel is to stay quite close to shore inside the Agulhas.

I would fully expect this vessel to make safe passage between harbours well within the weather windows available.

That all said, you need to trust the vessel and owner and it sounds like the trust is gone.
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Old 09-10-2011, 10:19   #28
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Re: Sailing without a Liferaft or EPIRB

Very simple.. Bring your own.. I do for both if need be. Do not bet your life you will be okay while underway.
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