As one poster mentioned earlier there are so many variables in boat
design of both multihulls and monohulls the question is almost meaningless. I just got back from crewing/sailing a Catalina
34 in the Baja
Ha-Ha and compared to my Seawind
1000 I thought that mono was an extremely dangerous boat
. There is a lot more space to walk forward on my cat and hand holds along the cabin
top. The wheel
on Catalinas in general seemed way too big and there was way less than a foot between the wheel
and the side of the cockpit
to get aft of the wheel to steer.
The anchor locker
was right at the bow and the windless was in the locker so you had to wrap the line around the windless and then sorta stand up to press the deck
mounted switch with your foot and be high enough to see the direction of the anchor
line; not an easy task in any type of seaway. My cat has a paddle to control the windless and I can stand in one of the bow pulpits to have a clear view of which direction the anchor
line is. Due to the cleat placement it is trivial to rig a preventer on my boat without standing up or leaving the cockpit
, something not so easily done on the on the Catalina
. It is also much easier to reef on my boat sitting down on the salon
roof, while you have to stand up on the Catalina. Not to mention all my lines lead to the starboard steering
station while on the Catalina it took three people to adjust the traveler, main sheet, jib sheets
and Cunningham when tacking or gybing; along with a helmsman. Even tacking with my screecher it is a one man job.
While it was mentioned earlier the FP had a clear shot out of the cockpit and off the stern into the water
on my boat there is a bench seat across the stern along with davits
which normally hold the inflatable
. If you lost
it pulling on a sheet you might fall on your buttissmoo or more unlikely in the inflatable
if you really screwed the pooch but it is hard for me to see how someone could go overboard
To counter this I am sure there are top tier monohulls that have a very well designed layout that would offer just as many safety
features as my boat does.
But one thing I have not seen mentioned is that while monos do heel, sometimes a lot, when sailing as a rule
will have much less heel. But to me even more importantly is that it is quite common for a muiltihull to alter course a few degrees to get a much more kindly motion in a seaway. In fact often going up wind
if you fall off the VMG will often be better than sailing higher up on a more direct course. And even if the VMG is not as good most cats are fast enough that it is worth trading a more seakindly motion for extra time on the passage
; not to mention the added safety
of a boat that is not bashing into the waves.
So while the key to addressing the question is how well the boat is designed as was posted earlier the real danger
is a capt/crew that makes mistakes
no matter how safe the boat is.