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Old 28-09-2003, 04:59   #1
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Okay.Serious post. Really !

I wander around the enternet, stopping , lurking, and sometimes having a thought and making a post or two. Ran across a post on another board that disturbed me. The fellow described a day of sailing and finished with , "And we only spilled one beer". Drinking while sailing, to me , doesn't sound like a GOOD idea. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy downing a few ( or more ) but in the proper time and place. Like tied up to a mooring or slip. Remember a fellow telling me about a funny ( his words) incident . He went out on a friends powerboat on Lake Michigan. They were accompianied by another boat that was owned by a friend of the first skipper, on a trip across Lake Michigan to Wisconsin. For those who don't know the Great Lakes, Lake Michigan is about 80 miles across . As the trip progressed, the drinks started flowing. About halfway across, someone came up with the idea of getting a close-up picture of the other boat powering along, so the skipper altered course to come up close to the other craft. He got close alright. Hit the other boat. At this point in the tale, the story teller broke into a hearty LAUGH ! Neither boat was damaged enough to cancel the trip or require assistance, but --HOLY COW. Kinda make me think that maybe the libations start flowing a little TOOOO early sometimes ! This can be serious stuff here, Folks.
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Old 28-09-2003, 07:57   #2
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29cascadefixer,

I couldn't agree with you more that drinking while boating is "serious stuff." There's a lot of attention given to not drinking while driving,but very little on drinking while boating. In the first scenario, if you kill someone while driving drunk,you'll probably be charged with vehicular manslaughter. I think the law requires a term of ten years in prison.Usually the person will get out in seven or less.That's some sentence for taking someones life! I'm not sure what the law stipulates for taking a life while boating? Maybe it's the same, but I'm sure the sentence isn't any more than 10 years. I keep my boat on a lake. What adds to my aggravation of people drinking while boating is their lack of seamanship. It's obvious that they don't know the first thing about who has right of way,or anything else pertaining to rules and regulations.All they know is how to turn a key and push the throttle.In some cases,raise a sail.When you add a "few cold ones" to the equation,it creates an acident looking for some place to happen.It really bothers me that you have to have a valid drivers license to drive,but anyone can take a boat out on the water without any training what so ever.It frustrates me that with all the other dangers you go through in your day to day activities (being diagnosed with cancer,killed in a "normal"car wreck,etc.) that you also have the chance of getting killed by some drunk fool behind the wheel of a boat while you're out trying to relaxe!What's the answer? Well, I think everyone knows,except for our legislators.This isn't a new topic that they haven't been made aware of before. Unfortunately,until one of their own gets killed in an alcohol related boat accident, the insanity will go on
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Old 28-09-2003, 12:08   #3
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Unhappy Another example

What drunkeness underway can do!

http://library.thinkquest.org/10867/spill/index.shtml

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Old 28-09-2003, 18:06   #4
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Yeah, agree with the above posters.

I don't suck a beer unless there is one anchor line (chain:-)
down, or two dock lines attached.

Learned that the hard way many years ago: If something goes wrong somewhere along the lines, I need all my marbles to survive, or even keep on going in comfort and style.


(Would hate to call the Coast Guard for help while slurring on the radio.
No, not this skipper, dead sober till the anchor is down, then watch out however, yers truly be the first one to lick the rum-bottle dry after the big anchor is properly set and weather/conditions evaluated.
Too old to make an arse out of myself, and need to look myself in the mirror quite frequently.
Not an ego thing however, more like a quality of life and no head aces, had too many of those in the past. Been there, done that as far as doing stupid stuff...We could tell some tales...:-)

Besides all that, seen too many deaths and destruction around the waterways and anchorages:
Last year I did the Colombus Day Regatta in Florida, 3 people got killed and 50 arrested for drunk driving.
There was 5000 boats in the anchorage and a human zoo.

Never again. We left on Saturday morning, before the big one, cause I deemed it unsafe to stay for the weekend, too many Sea-Ray/Budweisser combos..
(The idiots have no taste in either beer or boats)

As said above, if a licence to drive boats were required, we would have a clean wake out there....Instead the boating industry have too many lobbyist in Washington DC:
Better to make money and kill some...Like the tobacco spinsters..... Screw common sense and the health of the majority, as long as a few makes money, let be, deadly or not.

The same lack of common sense in the US Legal System is the reason scum-bag OJ. Simpson is playing golf in Miami now, istead of frying in hell.

Do we all have a right to kill wifes and neigbors or fellow boaters because we can count on a low IQ jury or expensive lawyers?

I guess.....

Don't stop the carnival. Anything goes if ya got the money.

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Old 28-09-2003, 18:43   #5
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Boating drivers license won't do it.

Look how many drive cars while drunk. Nope only thing I think will work is social pressure. If the funny-ness( funny-ness ??? eeeeek ) were taken out of the "I sailed that sucker an was I hammered-HarHar" outlook, maybe it would change. As much as I detest people presssuring people, doing the guilt trip generator on a one-to-one basis within hearing of others may work. You know, the "Geeez, ya did WHAT? Holy-Moly, man ( woman-person ) you coulda killed somebody "! It would take time, but I think it would be more effective .
By the way. After I started this thread, I remembered an incident that happened at a local lake two years ago. Two outboards were doing their thing. One guy was drunk, t-boned the other boat at fullspeed right where the driver sat. Killed the 2nd fellow. The fellow who did the killing ran, then came back later to see what was happening, then ran again. Sherriffs Marine Patrol arrested him. Still swacked. After a year , trial came up and he was found guilty. The judge sentenced him to a year in jail and 2 years probation. Judge was very angry. Sad that under Michigan law, that was the maximum sentence he could give him because it happened on the water. If he killed a fellow on the road, he would go to PRISON instead of jail for a longer time. You would think killing is killing, but I guess not
I think that being a responsible adult and knowing when to kick back and imbibe goes with mental maturity. There are young people who can deny self indulgence enough to weigh their fun againist wiping out a fellow human being. But, I think we all know an 'ol drunk who doesn't.
Sorry for stepping up on the soap box and ranting.
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Old 28-09-2003, 19:30   #6
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Think about this: Not to many weeks ago, I delivered a boat from Hilo to California... took us 22 days...Were we wrong to have an occasional "grog" or beer?...I'm not talking about getting drunk while out for a daysail and trying to get back into a crowded dock through a shipping lane.......

Sir Frances Chister (sp) says in his book that his most consumed liquid on his record setting 'round the world cruise was Beer...even had a tap and kegs aboard! I think having a couple drinks while sailing depends on where you are, how much traffic you are in, your self discipline and, a matter of watch responsibilities... But, What do you think?


PS: I'd Be careful about "Boating Operator Licenses"...I could be mistaken, but it seems to me by observation alone, that most countries that have given the right to the Government to decide who can own and operate a boat, have a populace that , over the years, have lost thier abilities to own recreational vessels altogether...
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Old 28-09-2003, 20:25   #7
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Full Agreement

Add to ignorance & drunkenness an increasingly common discourtesy & disrespect for one another & the combination is deadly. This isn't just "river rage" or even celebratory exuberance ... my neighborhood is more or less at war over rowdy driving kids, blaring "bump" cars, etc. If I thought I could move to another area of town & be free of it, I would, but the best I've come up with is to live aboard & just move the boat when the freaks find my space.

We also have several fatalities per year on the Ohio & stupidity, or simple meanness, is generally behind it. We had a drunken hit & run on the river this year, a 38' go-fast took out a small day sailor (21í max) with serious (critical) injuries & near drowning for the sailors. We also had a number of capsize over the dam type incidents, with fatalities.

We even had a rowboat full of drunken hilljacks that should have known the area well. They drifted by no less than a dozen WARNING signs & into Ft. Knoxís live fire range. At some point they ran out of beer & realized that it was well into the wee hours & at 40į F a bit chilly for beer & drool soaked t-shirts. The Army very generously treated them for exposure & delivered them to the county jail where they were offered garments only slightly more substantial than the t-shirts. It's worse on weekends & holidays, of course, much worse ... & my plan is to be where others aren't during those times.

It's not all bad though, not here anyway. In my state if you get caught operating a boat under the influence you face the same penalty that you would if you were driving a car under the influence, including the loss of your BMV issued driver's license. We're also phasing in boating licenses. I'm grandfathered by more than 20 yrs but they're starting to require youngsters to be licensed. Hopefully the process won't be the joke that a written driver's exam is ...

I personally no longer drink. If I did just up & do wine or beer with dinner itíd definitely be when Iím in for the night. I never was much of a drinker to begin with & I've long since given up going along for the ride on that. When it gets down to it, I guess I just don't get it, I can find fun in just about anything I do & don't need booze to make me feel better or different or whatever.

I've never had a problem with those that do drink but like many that don't, have little patience for the sloppy drunk, particularly when actually interesting things like kids, cars, bikes, boats, airplanes, pwr tools, guns or whatever else are involved.

I really don't think that booze is the root cause, though. I think it's a general & increasing disregard for one another. Bottom line, I just don't think people would put each other at risk like they do over something like a 6 pack if they really gave a **** to begin with. If I had any doubt about that I'd have only to look at all the people that do enjoy a drink from time to time, & do it without any problem at all for themselves or others.

Yíall reckon I'll need some decompression time before I try to share an anchorage ? I think maybe yes, ohhhhh yes.

Troubledour
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Old 28-09-2003, 21:10   #8
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Decided to delete this post, it was written in anger and does not belong on a board like this, or any board.

Sorry folks.
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Old 29-09-2003, 06:36   #9
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Hi all,
There are some differing opinions on what the correct solution to this problem is.I personally donít have a problem with requiring someone driving a boat to hold some type of license. I can also understand the viewpoint that when the government gets involved in licensing, sometimes things go haywire. IMO, at the very minimum, all states should require an individual to attend a safe boating course to legally be able to operate a boat. Recently I had a neighbor come up to my house to tell me about the new powerboat he was going to buy. He knew that I'm a sailor, but still wanted my opinion on the boat he was going to buy, and to invite me to take her out with him. He told me he had never owned a boat before, nor had he ever been on one. Yet, he was going to buy this new powerboat with twin 150 hp outboards on it, and take it out on a lake he had never been on before. When he asked me if I wanted to go, it was all I could do to keep from laughing in his face. This is a common scenario in the boating world though. Billy Bob decides he wants to do some boating, so he goes out and buys a boat with enough hp to ďreally make that sucker go!Ē Never mind he doesnít understand how much distance it takes a boat traveling at 50+ mph to stop, or any of the other dynamics concerning the boat, he just wants to have a good time. Itís ludicrous!! Nope, Iím old school on stuff like this. Iíve got permits and licenses out the ying-yang for everything from hang-gliding, to scuba and I believe each school had the right approach for the learned skill. Take training, test to validate that training, and then issue a permit as proof of it. I see no logic in the fact that I have to have a permit to rent scuba tanks because if I donít know what Iím doing Iíll kill myself, but I can drive a lethal weapon of a powerboat with the potential to kill a lot of people with no permit?? Whatís wrong with this picture?? My mention of powerboats here is intentional because itís pretty obvious that they can do the most damage, but there are sailors out there that are dangerous as well. A sailor that doesnít know rules of the road can be just as deadly turning into a path of a high speed boat that has the right away. As far as driving a boat while drinking, I think the same laws should apply as they do to driving a car. Even if you are far out to sea, it might seem like having a drink or two is no big deal, but there is always that chance (granted very small) that something will happen that you need to react to very fast. I donít want anything clouding my thought process should that happen. When the hooks down, pour a round.
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Old 29-09-2003, 09:54   #10
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I don't believe the government is out to get me...I never said the government would take boats away...I never said we don't have problems...I hold a USGC 100 ton Master/Mate " Captains License"(with endorcements), at times find employment as a professional mariner, and am not against licensing per se...I am certainly in favor of training... I just don't think mandatory licensing will solve the problems...I would rather see the coast guard, and inland lake authorities enforcing the laws already in place, rather than spending thier time running around looking at operator permits... IMHO anyway...

The point is that when you require licensing, it is a short step, albeit a longer progression to where Mexico, Costa Rica, and SCORES of countries are...personal boat ownership is very low...then, the rights of remaining boat owners are not represented, because there are to few boat owners to have any political affect. Yes, I DO believe what Thomas Jefferson said is correct: "He who governs least governs best"... I don't believe you can legislate stupid actions out of existence.


There are countries that require licensing, mostly third world country's who began licensing not out of a desire to improve anything, but out of a desire to countrol who has access to thier shore lines...some started as direct response to rebel activity...There are some "free" counmtrys that license also...Austrailia, Canada are two ...generally speaking, the boaters there think it is just another way to collect taxes and fees...

Nothing seems to be any safer than before and there are still idiots doing idiotic things on the water...THOSE are the people who need to be dealt with, and severly...

Here's a link to some Canadians thoughts on thier newer mandatory "Operators Permit"

http://www.lufa.ca/news/news_item.asp?NewsID=1445


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a yarn or two that might be true and a couple of battle scars
days of sparkling waters, nights of falling stars

I've got seashells, I've got souvenirs, I've got songs I've penned
I've got phographs, I've got memories, but mostly I've got friends

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Old 29-09-2003, 12:13   #11
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Brad,

You've provided some good information on why not to require boat licensing, but one statement you made brought the problem into clearer perspective to me."The US boat ownerships totals are 15,573,000." Wow!! man, that's a lot of boats!! If you've ever sailed in Miami harbor, it seems like all 15,573,000 of them are there! I think because of the number of boat owners in the U.S.,the problem has become much more severe. When drinking and lack of training is thrown into the mess, the problems increase exponentially. You mentioned Costa Rica in your post.I sailed a small daysailor out of Puntenaras,Costa Rica a couple of years ago.It was like sailing in a different world. Beautiful scenery,with plenty of peace and solitude.I only saw one fishing boat all day. There aren't many places like that left in the U.S. From the posts I 've read here, I think we probably all could agree on a few things. (1) Some type of safety training should be required for all boaters.(2) There should be stiff penalties for drinking while boating.(3)More enforcement is needed for existing boating laws.(4) Less government,is best government.(4) We all want to keep living to sail!
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Old 29-09-2003, 17:12   #12
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Making an arse

Yes Mr. Brad, you are absolutely correct: I did write a stupid post and I made an arse out of myself.
My appologies.....

You are right on all points.

Not that it helps much, but perhaps it explains some of it:

Had a bitter fight with my wife last night and we agreed to divorce.
Also some beers under the belt, so when I saw your post, I just laid it on, did not really have that big of a problem with your view, but let out some built up steam..Sorry again.

As for lying, hmm. I don't lie on purpose so to speak, or trying to mislead..
When I grew up in Norway we had to take a course and write a test (BŚtfÝrerprÝven) to operate a boat.

Since I am frequently out on the waters around here and have almost been run down several times by folks that should not be boating, I would think some kind of mandatory course or testing could be useful in this country, or this state for that matter.

At any rate, I was indeed wrong for speaking up in my state of mind, and for attacking you...I will try to delete my post, or ask a moderator to do it.

(Now hanging my head in shame and asking forgiveness, not only from you Mr. Brad but also from the rest of you that read my dribble, I shall refrain from writting anything under the influence ever again.....I promise)
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Old 29-09-2003, 17:30   #13
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CSY...

I certainly accept your apology, and understand comments made under the influence of to much anything...whether to much stress or to much alcohal ... I harbor no ill feelings at all and always let
bygones - be bygones...

... I went through what you are dealing with now, 13 years ago...what helped me was remembering what "Lee" says in 'East of Eden'....when in trouble, and you can't seem to get it together, to focus.....to carry on ordo anything...just go through the motions of what you want to do....soon enough it'll be true...Obviously Stienbeck said it much better...This too shall pass skipper...Good luck in your trails...

Best Regards
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I'm counting up what I've got to show for all these years afloat
a dog eared passport, a weathered face, a tired old boat
a yarn or two that might be true and a couple of battle scars
days of sparkling waters, nights of falling stars

I've got seashells, I've got souvenirs, I've got songs I've penned
I've got phographs, I've got memories, but mostly I've got friends

See the Faithful...
www.geocities.com/bradleybarrett
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Old 29-09-2003, 19:15   #14
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!

And here I thought I was the one that was running in the red, presssure wise.

CSY, my sympathies on your marriage ... been there & done that (she took the t-shirt). I had thought that we'd finish raising kids & move on into golden years but it just didn't play out.

I know from experience that nobody can say anything that will help, but I'll try anyway ... this too will pass. Be pissed for awhile, get it out of your system, then move on. It's about the best you can do.

For what it's worth, I'm going on the "living well is the best revenge" plan. The cool part is that the further I progress in piecing things back together, the less I care about the revenge part. (doesn't mean that I don't enjoy a good laugh & hang up when she asks for money, though ... entertainment is what it is).

Hang in there, this too will pass.

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Old 30-09-2003, 03:27   #15
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Unhappy Sorry Csy.

Divorce is a rotten process. I've been there 20 years ago. She got just about everything.Including an ongoing relationship with her relatives. I got the better part of that deal. Endure, endure, endure. As it goes along it gets better.
Wishing you well,Sir.
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