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Old 27-01-2008, 01:10   #16
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Alan and Kiwi, no argument from me about being safe. I am all for training and providing comprehensive lists of recommended gear to take, but in MHO you should not legislate seamanship!

Seamanship is up to the individual to research and satisfy himself that the decisions he makes on equipment are more suitable for his particular needs. I have the greatest vested interest in looking after my loved ones and myself.

Take for example life rafts, (the last resort survival option). If you look at the fine print on many SOLAS approved offshore life rafts, the certificate would say on a 10 man life raft “Certified for 6 to 10”. (Meaning you need a minimum of six persons for stability). Now if you have a larger yacht with up to 10 bunks then legislators would dictate that you carry a 10 man life raft even though you only made crossings with 3 to 4. This is an example of clerics forcing you to make an unsafe choice.

The point I am making is that with freedom comes responsibility. I don’t like anyone dictating to me how to manage that responsibility at sea, especially when you say, the resources in New Zealand to effect my salvation… are pretty thin.
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Old 27-01-2008, 01:28   #17
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I do think and fell that the entire Cat1 "net" could be redesigned. Cat1 was first and foremost conceived to deal with offshore racing. But it somehow is also used to encompass recreational vessels heading overseas. I think it fits the requirements of offshore racing, but is a little ruff around the edges for us others. However, after talking to a local guy that does inspections, a lot is left to the inspectors to makes there own judgments of what passes and what does not. The rules are certainly not adhered to the T as it reads in the Rule book.
I look at it quite differently today. When I was first set out on our plan, I got hold of th rule book and when I read what was required, I thought it daunting. But now with just a little more knowledge under my belt, I realise it isn't as daunting as I first thought. Many of the requirements are just plain obvious. And I think many of us here would adopt or have adopted many of the same requirements anyway.
I do have to agree with Steve about the way some of the rules are carried out. Like having a GPS, but not having to have the batteries. But at what point do you stop tying the shoe laces for people.
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Old 27-01-2008, 02:36   #18
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Allan, I say don't start tying their shoe laces at all, I don't want mine tied and like a lot of others I plan not to be a burden on anyone else and I take responsibility for myself and my crew. It is like the anti smacking law, I still doesn't stop the child killers it only makes criminals out of concerned parents like that guy in CHCH Who clipped his youngster on the ear for not listening and riding his bike on a busy street.
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Old 27-01-2008, 07:36   #19
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People who depend on Govt. to ensure their safety are more likely to find themselves in a very bad situation when said Govt. utterly fails. Ask Katrina victims here in the US.

Katrina is actually a great example of how things SHOULD work relative to Govt. services.... and how they should not. The Govt. weather services gave plenty of warning. People were told to evacuate over 3 days before the Hurricane hit. Govt. services people even drove through neighborhoods with loudspeakers announcing that an evacuation order was in place. In my view... the Govt. did a fantastic job doing what they SHOULD do: providing a warning and guidelines on what you should do.

But for the people who chose to stay, FEMA and other efforts to save them after Katrina hit were a disaster. Those people looked to the Govt. to provide their safety rather than having prepared and taken care of themselves and its no surprise how things played out. People who decide to abandon individual responsibility for their actions or lack of actions will usually find themselves exactly where they most feared to be.

What happens when Govt. attempts to mandate regulations relative to safety is people will rely on said regulations and only on the regulations. After all... the nanny state knows best and is taking care of them... right? So people will figure that if they can pass the minimum cat 1 requirements then they must be 100% safe to make a passage. Batteries for the GPS? I didnt need any.... the regs didnt specifically say that I did. So when a disaster happens because of no batteries (or anything else the regs didnt specifically cover) it will end up being blamed on the Govt. regs. So there will be MORE regulations. Soon they grow to encompass every absurd possibility and become both impossibly expensive and complicated.

I do understand and agree with the idea that a Govt. with limited resources needs to try and minimize the expenses associated with difficult offshore rescues. But these regulations apparently do not allow a sailor to sign a waiver and thus choose to relieve the NZ Govt. of any responsibility to attempt any rescue.... rather the Govt. wants to force people to conform to regulations that may cost thousands of dollars.

To say that not meeting all these requirements is unsafe because all of the things are required for a safe offshore passage..... well, the Hiscocks, Smeetons, Pardeys, Roths, Paysons.. heck Captain Cook... ALL would have failed the NZ regs and been deemed unsafe to sail offshore.

What happens when someone does meet all the Cat 1 regs and STILL loses their boat and needs rescue. After all... no amount of certifications or gear or training is going to guarantee 100% safety. If I have just been forced by the Govt. to spend tons of money on gear in NZ in order to be allowed to leave and then a whale gets pissed and sinks my boat.... is NZ going to refund me the costs? After all have they not assumed the role of certifying my safety? Responsibility for said safety has thus shifted from my shoulders to theirs. Right? A nanny state should be expected to be held accountable just as a nanny would.

Soon regulations will require a comprehensive testing of the crew to demonstrate skills and knowledge. This will of coarse require lots of new Govt. employees to administer it and conduct it all. This will mean more taxes and fees. It will also means that all the testing will have to be scheduled and conducted. This will take time. Cruisers will find themselves leaving on passage not based on weather but based on when the Govt. can inspect them and certify them as able to leave. That sounds real safe.


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Old 27-01-2008, 08:04   #20
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Every requirement Cat1 asks for are quite frankly, necessary for anyone just going across the straight, let alone off shore.
Are 3 GPSs really necessary? Fair enough asking for an alternate or back-up navigation system - but a back-up for the back-up and a sextant on top of that seems ridiculous.
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Old 27-01-2008, 10:53   #21
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Quote:
To say that not meeting all these requirements is unsafe because all of the things are required for a safe offshore passage..... well, the Hiscocks, Smeetons, Pardeys, Roths, Paysons.. heck Captain Cook... ALL would have failed the NZ regs and been deemed unsafe to sail offshore.
Safe is relative. A designation or minimum requirements are not assurance. All who want to be minimally equipped raise your mouse! I wouldn't do a trip like Capt Cook. Even he would not have done the trip the same way if he could help it. He took the best he could get. It does not set a minimum standard but actually sets a high one. He would have been foolish to go with less than he could get and so would you? They would have used the better charts and instruments if they could.

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Are 3 GPSs really necessary?
If two failed it just might. It's easy to lose one or have one go bad. On a long trip you lose one in June and one goes bad in September isn't out of the reasonable now is it. Given they cost almost nothing compared to what you have spent and given we all depend on them more than we should. Having three is not a bad idea. I do. Three seems about right but a fourth wouldn't be tossed overboard for me. I'd have three bilge pumps too. Actually thinking of a fourth.
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Old 27-01-2008, 11:31   #22
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I say don't start tying their shoe laces at all
Arrh but you see, there in lyes the dilema. Do you help your nieghbour in time of need, or do you ignore him because it was his fault. I chose the first, while others choose the later. I could debate my view, but it would not serve any purpose than argue Political and Moral ethics based on my belief.
But in a nutshell, I would go to my neighbors aid and I would hope my neighbor would do the same for me. However, if my neighbor was experianced and gave me advise, what a fool I would be to not heed the advise. If I was experianced and gave my neighbor advise and he was to not heed it, would I, should I not go to his aid? Personly I would, I am not saying others should. But the idealistic world I want to live in, the story would be, I would.
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Old 27-01-2008, 11:34   #23
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I take the major point of your post, Terry, and generally agree with your point of view. One part of your reference to those most impacted by Hurricane Katrina, however, strikes me as somewhat unfair.
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Originally Posted by Tspringer View Post

<snip>

But for the people who chose to stay, FEMA and other efforts to save them after Katrina hit were a disaster. Those people looked to the Govt. to provide their safety rather than having prepared and taken care of themselves and its no surprise how things played out. People who decide to abandon individual responsibility for their actions or lack of actions will usually find themselves exactly where they most feared to be.

<snip>
While there were undoubtedly many able-bodied people with the means to evacuate New Orleans who chose to stay, there were thousands who could not save themselves. Some were incapacitated physically or mentally, some had no means to travel on their own, some were incarcerated, some were residents of nursing homes and abandoned by staff, some tried walking across a bridge to get out of New Orleans only to encounter police roadblocks and white police officers threatening to shoot them if they didn't return to the flooded city.

So it's unfair, I think, to infer that anyone who was still in New Orleans when the storm hit got what they deserved. After all, it wasn't the hurricane that flooded the city - it was the failure of the government-built levees.

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Old 27-01-2008, 11:39   #24
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As for GPS's, we are debating something that is so small. GPS is so cheap today, why the argument? They don't want you to have 3x $4K chart plotters, just 2 backups that can be simple handheld GPS, which can be found very cheaply today.
By the way, the rule has changed now in regards to sightings. You no longer have to carry a sextant, because few know how to use them. Hence the 3x GPS's. But if you do know how to use a sextant, you don't have to carry a GPS.
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Old 27-01-2008, 11:40   #25
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Folks, please don't take this to politics. Lets leave Katrina out of this.
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Old 27-01-2008, 11:43   #26
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Do you help your nieghbour in time of need, or do you ignore him because it was his fault.
The answer has more implications than just the current situation. Some times the simple questions present the hardest answers.

The political answer is: We don't allow you to put us in that situation of having to choose. We will intercede on our own behalf because in the end it is better (for us) to prevent you from risking making us look bad. It is the least we can do - so we will. You say it does not matter if we come and save you and so we agree. We prefer however not to look bad because of your poor choices after you are dead. The pevention is for us not you.
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Old 27-01-2008, 11:58   #27
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Agree on politics..... and I was not referencing EVERYONE who stayed behind in Katrina... I never used the word everyone and my point was that more often than not those who rely on giant bureaucracy for their safety will end up holding the short stick.

Why 3 GPS's? Why not 5? Shouldn't they all be required to have chart plotters built in? How do you know folks know how to use them or understand what they are seeing on the display? You need a safety class... with a certification. For those who have the certification, how do you know they remember it? Clearly you need annual certifications. What if the captain is incapacitated? Clearly, every crew member needs annual certification. But technology moves fast and stuff changes.... so we really need certification every 6 months for each crew member.

Older engines and sails may fail as may older rigging and even an inspection may miss tiny imperfections that can lead to failure. So all critical gear should be replaced annually.

You get the point.... if the "Powers That Be" are allowed to regulate with impunity in the name of something that is impossible to achieve regardless of how much regulation you put in place (safety) the end result is predictable.

When Govt. is empowered to regulate in the name of safety or security the most common result has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with corruption, money and power. How much of these regulations are driven by a true concern about safety and how much is driven by a desire to squeeze lots more money out of visiting yachts by forcing them to spend money on lots of upgrades before they are allowed to leave?

Please note.... I really am not slamming NZ or the Govt. in NZ. This kind of thing isn't a NZ invention, it is a hallmark of Govt. everywhere.



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Old 27-01-2008, 12:19   #28
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Shouldn't they all be required to have chart plotters built in? How do you know folks know how to use them or understand what they are seeing on the display? You need a safety class... with a certification. For those who have the certification, how do you know they remember it?
Firstly, this is were the inspector comes into it. He will ensure you have a basic level of understanding in all area's.
Why not have chartplotter facilities? well very simple. No Electronic chart states that the chart is 100% accurate. That warning is posted on your screen when you start the machine up. So you should not expect to rely accurately and solely on the chartplotter. You are required as a skipper to take paper charts of where you intend to go. Thus a GPS only gives you Long and Lat and that is then found on the paper chart. This gives you all other aspects of normal navigation. The main one being, navigation by dead reckoning.
The rest of your statement is only taking the subject too far in to non-sensible argument. The Govt. is not doing any of the those things. They are putting into place simple basic ideals. Why? because yearly we have to spend billions of dollars rescuing idiots that go out there on to the open water. Every summer, we hear of these idiots that take out 5 mates in a small tinny with no life jackets and get caught in a 30kt blow and usually have not told a sole where they are heading to. That is the level of stupidity we see, (even though the Govt regs state you should not do any of the above) and often innocent people are also put at risk. If you were out on the water, would you like to know you have a reasonable level of safety gauranteed you? So at what point do you draw the line.
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Old 27-01-2008, 12:44   #29
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Alan, It is interesting , It seems I have opened a can of worms, BUT no matter what they say I think CAT1 is good ,at least it gives you a head start, In that I mean some people will say I dint need that and I can do with out that, cat1 at least you have the necessary safety equipment even if you dint use it.
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Old 27-01-2008, 12:46   #30
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Well said, Terry (Tspringer). All the technology in the world is no substitute for good seamanship.

Alan, two points:

1) Helping a neighbor in need is one thing. Entering their home and telling them how unsafe it is in one particular hypothetical situation or another and mandating fixes you deem appropriate is different.

2) Hasn't a boat visiting NZ from the US or any other faraway place already proven some level of competence? Would Larry Pardey have difficulty getting clearance to leave?
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