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Old 21-04-2009, 03:24   #31
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The fun police are out in force.
Now even the passengers have to be sober and look responsible?

Come on guys. Are we that grumpy that we don't like seeing others having a bit of fun? The lifejacket is a fair cop, and is important, but should not be over emphasised to a point where a boat load of 5 people now think the authorities are ridiculous. Sending them back to the dock was enough.







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Old 21-04-2009, 06:23   #32
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I'm all for fun -- heck, I'm all for passenger non-sobriety -- but it is reasonable for law enforcement to think that a boat load of drunk kids might also include a drunk operator. Once they found proof of an unsafe vessel (there is NO excuse for not having enough pfds on board -- none), it was reasonable to assume that there might be other safety problems, therefore, alert the Coasties.

It's all "fun" until someone makes a single stupid decision (gee, does that ever happen when alcohol is involved?), then it becomes an emergency real fast. I'm sure we all have several anecdotal stories of how this happens, so I'll spare you mine.

Me and my kids are out there sharing that same water -- I don't have the authority to pull that boatload of drunk kids over and make sure the driver of that little boat isn't drinking (even though everyone else on the boat is -- I find that hard to believe, btw) -- that's why I pay local lawn enforcement and the Coast Guard to do it for me.

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Old 21-04-2009, 08:03   #33
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First, let me say that I am not anti-CG. I spent 7 years in the USCG & my daughter is in now.

When I joined, in the early 70s, there were places, particularly in the northeast, where people would buy you a round when they found out you were a Coastie. I believe what really did that in was the "war on drugs." That war has cost the US more, in practically every way, than all the other wars we've fought - on top of which, we lost. But I digress...

We were mostly about safety & saving lives & property. It seems that the USCG is more a law enforcement agency now. I'm not at all sure that the shift to BDUs was a coincidence. When you think of yourself as "at war" you see the guys on the other boat as the enemy. Same with shore-side law enforcement. As taxpayers, we are not the enemy, we are their employers.
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Old 21-04-2009, 13:27   #34
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SH... I guess I am surprised here.....you were short a life jacket...your flare gun was expired and....you were drunk.......would you have had the experience with USCG..if you were following the laws? Probably not. I don't see how people can get upset when in fact they are breaking the law to begin with.
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Old 21-04-2009, 14:06   #35
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First, let me say that I am not anti-CG. I spent 7 years in the USCG & my daughter is in now.

When I joined, in the early 70s, there were places, particularly in the northeast, where people would buy you a round when they found out you were a Coastie. We were mostly about safety & saving lives & property. It seems that the USCG is more a law enforcement agency now. As taxpayers, we are not the enemy, we are their employers.
I agree with ya 100%. I think many of us who lived through the "Kindler Gentler" Coast Guard miss the days of old and would just like to share in the coastal boating experience that 90% of the planet still enjoys. For 90% of the planets boaters, a constant threat of boardings is NOT an accepted fact of life. My grandparents never experienced a CG boarding in half a century of boating. If it was good enough for them, then it would be good enough for me...
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Old 21-04-2009, 16:04   #36
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For 90% of the planets boaters, a constant threat of boardings is NOT an accepted fact of life.
Yup
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Old 21-04-2009, 16:18   #37
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I understand the concern with wasted resources but from the standpoint of security, terrorist look for the weakest target and presence can be a HUGE deterent. Also, these agencies, CG and Harbor patrol, have to train new members. So it only makes sense that perform checks while they are underway. I have heard from friends that routinely fish in Mexican waters that they have to check in with the CG station on the way back to San Diego. If not, they will be stopped and boarded.
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Old 21-04-2009, 16:40   #38
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A 29 year old local has dissappeared In his 14 foot aluminium fishing boat. He left the bar at closing time and took off in his boat in the dark in high winds. All day the coast guard and the Herc have been combing the water looking for him. My personal opinion is they will find his body when it floats to the surface. This is probably another case of booze and macho attitude trumping common sense. I feel sympathy for his family but you cannot legislate against stupidity.I cannot even begin to imagine the cost of what may ultimaetly become a recovery mission. The next time you are stopped for a compliance check remember all those who died for want of proper safety gear.
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Old 21-04-2009, 17:37   #39
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First, let me say that I am not anti-CG. I spent 7 years in the USCG & my daughter is in now.

When I joined, in the early 70s, there were places, particularly in the northeast, where people would buy you a round when they found out you were a Coastie. I believe what really did that in was the "war on drugs." That war has cost the US more, in practically every way, than all the other wars we've fought - on top of which, we lost. But I digress...

We were mostly about safety & saving lives & property. It seems that the USCG is more a law enforcement agency now. I'm not at all sure that the shift to BDUs was a coincidence. When you think of yourself as "at war" you see the guys on the other boat as the enemy. Same with shore-side law enforcement. As taxpayers, we are not the enemy, we are their employers.
No arguments with you there.

And thank you (and your daughter) for your service.

DGC
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Old 21-04-2009, 22:24   #40
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Really?

Personally, I have no problem with being stopped and boarded, period.. Their job is to enforce maritime law and to protect and serve, our job is to be responsible sailors.

We sail the BVI's at least once a year for the past 11 years and have been stopped the last three and once in the USVI. Never a fine, never a hassle, nor have I felt bullied or harassed. I actually have a BVI and USVI Coastie hat added to my collection from their inspections.

In our home cruising grounds we get the annual CG inspection and attend the safety seminar, always properly maintain our yacht and gear. We will not allow crew to drink intoxicating beverages or act the fool while underway. We run a tight, safe and fun ship, maybe that's just us.....

We thank each and every one of them for serving!
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Old 22-04-2009, 01:08   #41
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The fun police are out in force.
Now even the passengers have to be sober and look responsible?

Come on guys. Are we that grumpy that we don't like seeing others having a bit of fun? The lifejacket is a fair cop, and is important, but should not be over emphasised to a point where a boat load of 5 people now think the authorities are ridiculous. Sending them back to the dock was enough.







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I'm no prude and I drink on board - It happens to not be illegal here for some strange reason. I do try to retain a semblance of sobriety in case the sails need trimming or something.

I also accept boardings as a fact of life just as a pilot I accepted ramp checks as a fact of life. However, if I am not compliant I don't whinge about it to 16,000 strangers.
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Old 22-04-2009, 08:57   #42
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It is very hard to argue on the side of drunken revelers, but let me give it a shot. Law enforcement officers tend to group people into three categories: good, potentiallly bad, and bad. The good they treat with courtesey and the minimum hassle to get their job done. The bad, they hassle until proven innocent. For example, they make you and your crew kneel in a line while they run your id's. The potentially bad, they take precautions with. The more exposed they are to the bad, the larger the potentially bad group becomes and the fewer people fall into the good group. While most of us here fall into the good group, we may at times have been placed in the potentially bad group. It often comes down to the circumstance in which we were observed and how jaded the law enforcement officer is. Now that CG is used as a police force, they are subject to the same prejudices as other law enforcement agencies. As a young drunk on a boat, you will be put into the bad group even if you do nothing wrong. Even if the officer doesn't see you as a threat, he has a propensity to want to teach you a lesson so you don't become a problem. Speaking of lessons, there is perhaps one other group: the stupid. Coasties see real harm and death caused by stupidity, so they are always on the lookout for stupidity.

Now here is where my beef lies: I do not like to be subject to the caprice of a law enforcement officer any more than absolutely necessary. I do not like looking over my shoulder, wondering if the officer will see something that will make him stop me. I hate the gut check I get every time I see an officer. I tap my brakes every time I see a patrolman, even if I'm not speeding. I tell my kids to sit down while underway when I see a Coastie, even if they aren't doing anything remotely dangerous. My instinct is not to recognize the officer as my guardian, but rather to look at him as an adversary to be avoided. At the very least, the officer could inconvenience me. At worst, he would find something wrong and ruin my day. Either way, I want to avoid his scrutiny. Unfortunately, the Coasties, along with traffic cops and parking meter readers, now fall into the category of adversaries.

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Old 22-04-2009, 09:17   #43
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DavidGC,
You're welcome. It was a blast. My daughter is planning on staying in and I would have if I'd had a brain back then.
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Old 22-04-2009, 09:22   #44
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Brett, if you are legal..and your boat is in order..and you aren't "hiding" anything..why should you care if you are checked.....they are doing their job..which is what they get paid to do. The ones who ignore and let the drunks, crooks and such get away with murder...are the ones you should get upset at..they are allowing your life to be threatened by some boater who has no concern for others
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Old 22-04-2009, 09:25   #45
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.... it was required to have a boat saftey license or something, .....
Let me get this sraight. You didn't have enough PFDs for everyone on board, signals expired, your crew intoxicated (I'll give you the benefit of the doubt that you were sober?), and you are complaining that you got hassled by the Coast Guard? It seems to me that this is the sort of thing that is causing states to start boater license programs like you have in Washington State.

By the way, had you not been stopped and something bad had happened while you were out on the water, how would you (the skipper) have decided who didn't get a PFD?
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