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Old 12-07-2013, 13:24   #1
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Awesome Rescue Story!

Man swims 5 hours to shore to get help for family after boat capsizes in Chesapeake. Wow. Total hero.

Family rescued from capsized boat after relative 'just swam and swam' for five hours - U.S. News
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Old 12-07-2013, 13:45   #2
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

Awesome.
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Old 12-07-2013, 13:57   #3
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

At least they had PFD"s

...no cell phone? No VHF? No Flares?
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Old 12-07-2013, 14:39   #4
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

While I am happy for the outcome...it breaks all the rules of survival/boating safety.

Statistically the guy was luckier than heroic, good or smart.

I'm with belizesalor...a true heo keeps his family safe by having the experience/knowledge to NOT get caught in a storm, deal with the storm without sinking, have a radio/plb/EPIRB on board (flares/flashights/etc while useful will not often get you saved) if you DON'T have all the other things in your pocket.

Not that he's a bad guy or not brave...but calling it heroic takes away from the meaning hero in my book.

A bad example to hold up for review.
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Old 12-07-2013, 15:07   #5
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

Yes, he is more lucky than brave. By far most people who leave the boat die.

Reminds me a bit of the parable about the British ship in a storm...a cannon broke loose and went careening around the decks, doing big damage, and threatening to sink the ship. A seaman lept out and, at great risk to to life and limb, got a line on the cannon and managed to secure it. The crew cheered and treated him like a hero. The Captain came on deck, walked up to the man, pulled out his gun and shot him dead.

It was this seaman's job to secure the cannon for sea in the first place.
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Old 12-07-2013, 15:20   #6
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
A bad example to hold up for review.
I recall another bad example, an american or australian woman was traveling on a Ferry in Malaysia. The ferry capsized or sank. Several people survived, so they stayed in the area of the sunk ferry awaiting rescue, treading water. Apparently there were no life boats. After a few hours several gave up the ghost and stopped treading water.

The woman got tired of waiting and started swimming, she swam for several hours, getting washed past a few islands, before she was able to clamber ashore.

She was one of the few survivors. Maybe the authorities, didn't know about the sinking until she appeared. I think I saw this on TV. (getting old
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Old 12-07-2013, 15:26   #7
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

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I recall another bad example, an american or australian woman was traveling on a Ferry in Malaysia. The ferry capsized or sank. Several people survived, so they stayed in the area of the sunk ferry awaiting rescue, treading water. Apparently there were no life boats. After a few hours several gave up the ghost and stopped treading water.

The woman got tired of waiting and started swimming, she swam for several hours, getting washed past a few islands, before she was able to clamber ashore.

She was one of the few survivors. Maybe the authorities, didn't know about the sinking until she appeared. I think I saw this on TV. (getting old
Yep...there's always the exception to the rule.

And the often over quoted line (but still a favorite)..."a man's gotta know his limitations"....

Some people in some survival situations should break from the norm....as they have skills that allow them to do things that others can't. But for most...go with the training as it was written in blood from thousands of documented survival/safety invetigations/stories.
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Old 12-07-2013, 15:45   #8
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I just finished reading a book about a guy that kayaked around Australia and he had his PLB fail on him twice. He only found out because he tested them just before attempting the more difficult stages of the trip. Brand new units both times. Safety equipment isn't a 100% guarantee that you will survive. Every situation has its own set of variables. We can't rely entirely on safety equipment just because its there but it is always better to have it than not. I wouldn't even contemplate a trip without safety gear if I had a choice to have it. It rarely fails and saves a lot more lives no safety equipment.
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Old 12-07-2013, 16:41   #9
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

It was a 16 ft Carolina Skiff.

It sounds like he did the swim without a lifejacket. If you were going to swim a few miles to get help wouldn't you bring a life-jacket? It would slow you down, but you'd have better odds of success. Maybe they didn't have enough life jackets?
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Old 12-07-2013, 16:46   #10
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

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I just finished reading a book about a guy that kayaked around Australia and he had his PLB fail on him twice. He only found out because he tested them just before attempting the more difficult stages of the trip. Brand new units both times. Safety equipment isn't a 100% guarantee that you will survive. Every situation has its own set of variables. We can't rely entirely on safety equipment just because its there but it is always better to have it than not. I wouldn't even contemplate a trip without safety gear if I had a choice to have it. It rarely fails and saves a lot more lives no safety equipment.
Kinda like the guy that gets hit by lightning twice...a billion to one or more. PLBs and EPIRBs have proven themselves not only to work 90+ percent of the time but actually provided for rescue in the high 90 percent category. I'll bet my life on one over a 5 mile swim at night in the Chesapeake.

As I said...holding up these kind of examples just shows ignorance to the serious side of safe outdoor activities and survival.
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Old 12-07-2013, 17:05   #11
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

Can we not just focus on the good outcome and heroic effort here for even a minute?! My God. So quick to judge and condemn. I'm sure no one around here makes bad decisions ever but in the real world lots of people do and sometimes people even get into trouble after making good decisions! such is life. Given the situation this man felt his best chance to save the lives of his family was to swim to shore, a brave decision in my books, and he made it and they all lived. This is a tremendous outcome. But go ahead, tear him down if that makes you feel smarter/ better.
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Old 12-07-2013, 17:10   #12
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
At least they had PFD"s
Count us in!

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Old 12-07-2013, 20:05   #13
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

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Can we not just focus on the good outcome and heroic effort here for even a minute?! My God. So quick to judge and condemn. I'm sure no one around here makes bad decisions ever but in the real world lots of people do and sometimes people even get into trouble after making good decisions! such is life. Given the situation this man felt his best chance to save the lives of his family was to swim to shore, a brave decision in my books, and he made it and they all lived. This is a tremendous outcome. But go ahead, tear him down if that makes you feel smarter/ better.
Tearing down or pointing out on a boating forum the right thing to do if you are ever in the same situation?

Had you stuck to the facts and not used the word heroic...maybe it would have been addressed a little differently...maybe not.

As I posted...if the guy had only made a mistake or two...that's one thing...the entire trip was a disaster and could have easily had a disastrous outcome with or without his brave swim.

Hope he realizes that and doesn't repeat the multiple mistakes for his families sake.
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Old 13-07-2013, 01:39   #14
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

Swimming five hours in the dark, not knowing if his family was still ok..I'm sure he did a lot of hindsight thinking.
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Old 13-07-2013, 02:25   #15
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Re: Awesome rescue story!

cf-
Try swimming in a life jacket. It is very much like swimming while towing a bucket. Lots more drag than you would think.
Some folks are naturally bouyant, others sink like stones. But with any effective life jacket on, you'll have to do a backstroke to get anywhere. If I wanted to cover any distance, I'd ditch it too.
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