I think that if you are going the same direction as the current
that is carrying the debris, the odds of hitting it are fairly small. You could also track the debris field across the pacific by the carrying current
, and do crossings at a different latitude.
The experience I had with debris, was about 6 months after hurricane
Ike, I ran across someone's wooden deck
, It was more than 30' across including railings and attached wooden stairway. It was invisible, (floating right at the surface), until I was almost right on it. No time to turn or stop. I pulled throttles to idle and put drives in neutral. and ran right over it. There was a loud bump and scraping sound and I was past it. Then I noticed my knotmeter
had gone to ZERO, and the bilge alarm
went off. I ran downstairs, and saw the thruhull knotmeter
had been broken and pushed out. Fortunately I had a right sized plug
hanging on the wire, ( I use it when I pull the knotmeter for service), and quickly stopped the leak. When I started back up I had some vibration. Later at a hual out one drive shaft was tweaked, and the prop had a damaged blade, (the tip was bent over), and one half of the hull
had no barnacles
, (or paint). This is a plastic boat going 20 knots, (probably 12 at impact). It didn't sink me, but it could have if I hadn't been prepaired.
If I had thought ahead there hadn't been any debris reports for several months, but the deck could have been on shore or hung up somewhere and floated free on a high tide. The moral is go slow and keep a good lookout.
If someone wanted to make some money
a good forward looking "collision" sonar that looks from waterline to bottom of keel would be a good thing.