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Old 01-12-2019, 10:57   #91
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Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Originally Posted by mglonnro View Post
That summary would seem likely (at least for a non-multihull sailor like me). The challenge, I think, is to actually establish this as some kind of a fact.



It's difficult.

Itís all anecdotes - there are no statistical facts because nobody has tried to quantify them. Probably because the rates of injury and death on sailboats are vanishingly small when compared to say pedestrians in a city or cars on any road.

Despite the denigration of the respective fanboys, most posters have tried to describe the relative safety merits and comfort factors. If thatís not enough, experience it for yourself. Charter, or find people with boats, and go sailing on both types.

One more anecdote for you. When we plan to go sailing, we start the engines, turn on the instruments, close the escape hatches, and let go the mooring lines or hoist the anchor. And off we go.

We donít remove everything from tables and chairs that isnít strapped in. If weíre not expecting larger waves we even wonít put away the dish rack with drying dishes on the galley counter.

Iíve talked to liveaboards in monos who have told me they donít go sailing as much anymore because itís just such a pain to put everything away and put back out when done.

The lack of heel and minimal rolling is transformational for safety and comfort.
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Old 01-12-2019, 14:17   #92
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Itís all anecdotes - there are no statistical facts because nobody has tried to quantify them. Probably because the rates of injury and death on sailboats are vanishingly small when compared to say pedestrians in a city or cars on any road.

Despite the denigration of the respective fanboys, most posters have tried to describe the relative safety merits and comfort factors. If thatís not enough, experience it for yourself. Charter, or find people with boats, and go sailing on both types.
Oh, that's my gut feeling as well, that it would be safer. It's just another theme I'm interesting in: how to get more empirical instead of anecdotal evidence. About just about anything sailing related.

It's probably as you say, though. Rates of injury and death are so small that nobody is ready to invest in gathering the data, doing the research.

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One more anecdote for you. When we plan to go sailing, we start the engines, turn on the instruments, close the escape hatches, and let go the mooring lines or hoist the anchor. And off we go.

We donít remove everything from tables and chairs that isnít strapped in. If weíre not expecting larger waves we even wonít put away the dish rack with drying dishes on the galley counter.

Iíve talked to liveaboards in monos who have told me they donít go sailing as much anymore because itís just such a pain to put everything away and put back out when done.
How fascinating! And true. Before hoisting the sails everything needs to be put away. And that stray fork or something that was forgotten will surely fly down to the lee, hit the floor and cause a scratch in it

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The lack of heel and minimal rolling is transformational for safety and comfort.
Yes, indeed, and this is quite a powerful argument in favour of more than one hull.
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Old 01-12-2019, 14:29   #93
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Itís all anecdotes - there are no statistical facts because nobody has tried to quantify them. Probably because the rates of injury and death on sailboats are vanishingly small when compared to say pedestrians in a city or cars on any road.
I agree that there probably are no statistics, and we may be talking about small numbers here. Maybe the most important factor is how comfortable one feels in a catamaran vs a monohull, i.e. not really a safety problem but a comfortability benefit.

When it comes to physical safety, most arguments seem to speak in favour of catamarans though. It is not as easy to find arguments for monohulls. One possible argument is the fact that (at least some) monohulls have good handholds and and places to lean to, everywhere inside, on both sides. A well designed interior does not allow you to get hurt. In catamarans the spaces are probably more wide open, and that might make some sort of accidents more common. That's one point for monohulls, if I really try .
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Old 01-12-2019, 14:39   #94
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Originally Posted by fxykty View Post
Itís all anecdotes - there are no statistical facts because nobody has tried to quantify them. Probably because the rates of injury and death on sailboats are vanishingly small when compared to say pedestrians in a city or cars on any road.

Despite the denigration of the respective fanboys, most posters have tried to describe the relative safety merits and comfort factors. If thatís not enough, experience it for yourself. Charter, or find people with boats, and go sailing on both types.

One more anecdote for you. When we plan to go sailing, we start the engines, turn on the instruments, close the escape hatches, and let go the mooring lines or hoist the anchor. And off we go.

We donít remove everything from tables and chairs that isnít strapped in. If weíre not expecting larger waves we even wonít put away the dish rack with drying dishes on the galley counter.

Iíve talked to liveaboards in monos who have told me they donít go sailing as much anymore because itís just such a pain to put everything away and put back out when done.

The lack of heel and minimal rolling is transformational for safety and comfort.
I read an article in a magazine several years ago which compared statistics for MOB fatalities.

Unfortunately I can't remember which mag, it might have been "Sailing". I remember it was more of a racing oriented mag, and therefore I expected a monohull bias.

But the statistics they quoted were pretty heavily in favour of multihulls. That year there had been ZERO deaths due to people falling overboard from multis.

I've had a quick search for the article online, but haven't found it.
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Old 01-12-2019, 14:59   #95
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Iíve talked to liveaboards in monos who have told me they donít go sailing as much anymore because itís just such a pain to put everything away and put back out when done.
For us, not really that bad. I have not experienced that as a problem.

When we hoist the sails we need to check the saloon table and the galley table, but that's about it. We need to put cups and anything taller than that away in the galley, and all dishes from the saloon table. Usually there's however nothing to put away, unless we have just eaten, or we have just left the marina and the computer is still on the table (it should not be there). There are better places for all the breaking stuff, and they should already be there. Maybe it is good to have a relatively small boat where all the tables must be kept clear in order to have some free space for spreading the charts and for making a sandwich .
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Old 01-12-2019, 15:08   #96
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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For us, not really that bad. I have not experienced that as a problem.



When we hoist the sails we need to check the saloon table and the galley table, but that's about it. We need to put cups and anything taller than that away in the galley, and all dishes from the saloon table. Usually there's however nothing to put away, unless we have just eaten, or we have just left the marina and the computer is still on the table (it should not be there). There are better places for all the breaking stuff, and they should already be there. Maybe it is good to have a relatively small boat where all the tables must be kept clear in order to have some free space for spreading the charts and for making a sandwich .

Good on you for keeping things simple. My two immediate samples for monohull live aboard are on a Bene 41 and a Westsail 32. Both have pictures in frames and potted plants and one or the other has some decorative candles and curios on shelves. All need to be stored away.
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Old 01-12-2019, 15:26   #97
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Originally Posted by fxykty View Post
Good on you for keeping things simple. My two immediate samples for monohull live aboard are on a Bene 41 and a Westsail 32. Both have pictures in frames and potted plants and one or the other has some decorative candles and curios on shelves. All need to be stored away.
If I would often sail further away from shops than my usual two days distance, I'd love to have a place for growing salad and other fresh food. I just wonder why modern long distance cruising boats don't have that feature. Fresh food would be very welcome when at sea. Cherry tomatoes would serve as decoration too. Of course that place for plants would be a box that can take all the healing without throwing the plants out.
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Old 01-12-2019, 15:46   #98
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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If I would often sail further away from shops than my usual two days distance, I'd love to have a place for growing salad and other fresh food. I just wonder why modern long distance cruising boats don't have that feature. Fresh food would be very welcome when at sea. Cherry tomatoes would serve as decoration too. Of course that place for plants would be a box that can take all the healing without throwing the plants out.

Regarding plants and cruising, I expect that many countries would take them and throw them away with the other quarantined rubbish and organics. So no point having any slow growing plants if you want them past the current passage. Though Iíve seen boats with sprouts.
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Old 01-12-2019, 15:55   #99
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Regarding plants and cruising, I expect that many countries would take them and throw them away with the other quarantined rubbish and organics. So no point having any slow growing plants if you want them past the current passage. Though Iíve seen boats with sprouts.
Ok, that's true, of course depending on which direction you go. Lettuce would be quick to grow. And new seeds could be available even in Australia and other places where people are strict on these things. One could also try to make use of spices, lettuce and other plants that are nowadays sold with pots (and ready to harvest) in grocery stores.
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Old 01-12-2019, 17:22   #100
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

I have an autopilot on my Catamaran, It drives itself,

So the majority of my travelling is sitting or laying on the hammock over and back past the transom on my Cat, Above my Dinghy, In all weathers and wave heights,

It does have a canopy above it to keep the rain and sun off me, Which folds back so I can get the sun on me if I wish,

Ive never had a wave hit it, no matter what the sea is doing,
I do wear a chest harness just in case in bad weather or sleeping on it, ,
Its level and flat all the time and exceptionally comfortable,

I just replaced it with non tear canvas, It was getting old, and UV effected, Low and behold, I can also use it now as a rain catcher, Just by putting a bucket under one end, That was a bonus I didnt think of,

Cheers, Brian,
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Old 01-12-2019, 17:24   #101
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Originally Posted by fxykty View Post
Itís all anecdotes - there are no statistical facts because nobody has tried to quantify them. Probably because the rates of injury and death on sailboats are vanishingly small when compared to say pedestrians in a city or cars on any road.

Despite the denigration of the respective fanboys, most posters have tried to describe the relative safety merits and comfort factors. If thatís not enough, experience it for yourself. Charter, or find people with boats, and go sailing on both types.

One more anecdote for you. When we plan to go sailing, we start the engines, turn on the instruments, close the escape hatches, and let go the mooring lines or hoist the anchor. And off we go.

We donít remove everything from tables and chairs that isnít strapped in. If weíre not expecting larger waves we even wonít put away the dish rack with drying dishes on the galley counter.

Iíve talked to liveaboards in monos who have told me they donít go sailing as much anymore because itís just such a pain to put everything away and put back out when done.

The lack of heel and minimal rolling is transformational for safety and comfort.


There was an old poster on cruisers forum that worked for the NTSB and he did a study. His conclusions were that catamarans were as safe as monohulls but there was a greater risk of injury on a monohull.
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Old 01-12-2019, 17:51   #102
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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There was an old poster on cruisers forum that worked for the NTSB and he did a study. His conclusions were that catamarans were as safe as monohulls but there was a greater risk of injury on a monohull.
How possibly can he collect accurate data? Depending on where you sail changes the ratios of cats to monos, the seas that you sail in change how the boats behaviour etc, what size cats & monos, what types?....It's a very hard measurement to take, anecdotal is really the only evidence we have and that tends to be bias.

Personally the only time my mono dosent feel safe to me is when I'm at the bow in weather, just not much room up there compared to a cat. The motion of a mono is much more predictable, well a biggish mono is, I think that's a plus for monos, most modern monos reef from the cockpit, I furl ,so no need to be on deck.

Size matters, a 34ft old mono is very different from a 50ft modern mono, I never really appreciated this until I started crusing fulltime in a bigger boat.

Monos definitely roll more, some more than others but it's a Cf myth that cats are flat and stable all the time, they jerk ,roll and move in many ways, they are not always comfortable, they are not always fast.

If I had to have a guess I'd say a large cat with a high bridgedeck is probably the safest, but once again, there are so many variables.

I've just done 300nm in company with a 46ft cat (not the first time), it was interesting comparing,
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Old 01-12-2019, 18:08   #103
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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How possibly can he collect accurate data? Depending on where you sail changes the ratios of cats to monos, the seas that you sail in change how the boats behaviour etc, what size cats & monos, what types?....It's a very hard measurement to take, anecdotal is really the only evidence we have and that tends to be bias.

Personally the only time my mono dosent feel safe to me is when I'm at the bow in weather, just not much room up there compared to a cat. The motion of a mono is much more predictable, well a biggish mono is, I think that's a plus for monos, most modern monos reef from the cockpit, I furl ,so no need to be on deck.

Size matters, a 34ft old mono is very different from a 50ft modern mono, I never really appreciated this until I started crusing fulltime in a bigger boat.

Monos definitely roll more, some more than others but it's a Cf myth that cats are flat and stable all the time, they jerk ,roll and move in many ways, they are not always comfortable, they are not always fast.

If I had to have a guess I'd say a large cat with a high bridgedeck is probably the safest, but once again, there are so many variables.

I've just done 300nm in company with a 46ft cat (not the first time), it was interesting comparing,


Pretty sure his data was collected from the US coast guard.
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Old 01-12-2019, 18:16   #104
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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How possibly can he collect accurate data? Depending on where you sail changes the ratios of cats to monos, the seas that you sail in change how the boats behaviour etc, what size cats & monos, what types?....It's a very hard measurement to take, anecdotal is really the only evidence we have and that tends to be bias.

Personally the only time my mono dosent feel safe to me is when I'm at the bow in weather, just not much room up there compared to a cat. The motion of a mono is much more predictable, well a biggish mono is, I think that's a plus for monos, most modern monos reef from the cockpit, I furl ,so no need to be on deck.

Size matters, a 34ft old mono is very different from a 50ft modern mono, I never really appreciated this until I started crusing fulltime in a bigger boat.

Monos definitely roll more, some more than others but it's a Cf myth that cats are flat and stable all the time, they jerk ,roll and move in many ways, they are not always comfortable, they are not always fast.

If I had to have a guess I'd say a large cat with a high bridgedeck is probably the safest, but once again, there are so many variables.

I've just done 300nm in company with a 46ft cat (not the first time), it was interesting comparing,


And you are correct. So many different types of monos and multis. We have owned quite a few different catamarans, some had the magic carpet motion and others felt like they were trying to throw you overboard. Iím sure you could also find the same discrepancy with monohulls.
Ive never done well with the slow rolling motion of a monohull, even at anchor, but have no problem with the quicker motion of the catamaran. Iím sure there are plenty of people who feel the opposite and therefore would prefer the monohull.
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Old 01-12-2019, 19:06   #105
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Re: Catamaran vs Monohull Crew Safety

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Ive never done well with the slow rolling motion of a monohull, even at anchor, but have no problem with the quicker motion of the catamaran. I’m sure there are plenty of people who feel the opposite and therefore would prefer the monohull.

I agree - that's a huge factor. Everyone reacts differently, and there can be a huge difference as to what, specific, type of motion causes seasickness between people. As an example, I can handle the sharp, snappy motion, or pounding, of a catamaran no problem - but the deeepp, sloooow, wallooowing rhythmic, pendulum motion will make me turn green, especially with diesel fumes.
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