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Old 09-04-2012, 20:32   #76
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Toronto
Boat: Custom 41' Steel Pilothouse Cutter
Posts: 4,705
Re: A moral dilemma

Originally Posted by knottybuoyz View Post
I have a chance to sell our 25' express cruiser (not an easy sell nowadays) to a fella with a young family. He has Zero, absolutely Zero experience with boats of any kind. Spent two hours yesterday explaining every system of the boat and how to operate it. He didn't even know what a bilge blower was for.

He seems adamant this is the boat he wants.

I really don't believe this is an ideal first boat for this guy. I'm afraid he'll hurt himself or his family with it. The boat is powerful enough that if operated improperly it could be dangerous. If he's going to operate it where he says, a large but shallow lake with plenty of good ole' Canadian Shield granite outcroppings the first thing I can see him doing is ripping the outdrive or props off it it.

He hasn't taken any boating courses and doesn't have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card and has absolutely no idea what he's getting himself into.

I guess the dilemma is, do I sell it to him (take the money and run) and wish him luck or refuse to sell it to him and maybe save him or his family some grief.
Firstly, he can't legally run the boat without a PCOC, and, I would wager, insurance of a minimal sort. So sell him the thing on the basis that it's as advertised, and then inform the local cops that there's a guy with no papers who's just bought your old boat. It's legal for any mook to buy a boat, after all, but not to run it beyond its slip.

Secondly, there is no moral dilemma anymore than if a slightly crazy-looking guy bought a hammer at your yard sale and three weeks later you learn he'd done in his roommate with it during a psychotic break. He had a right to buy a hammer, you had a right to sell it. His actions, while slightly "off", did not seem life-threatening to you at the time.

I would sell the boat, strongly encouraging him to take instruction and get licensed, and then do as I said: tell the cops, inform the marina, warn your friends.

But you can't babysit the actions of the next owner of a boat you no longer own. If we vetted every owner, we'd never sell the boat. Maybe you are having seller's remorse ahead of the fact?

Lastly, Darwin will find a way. A guy who doesn't understand a blower will give a show when he goes. Cash the cheque immediately.

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