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Philosophy

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Philosophy

Postby Once and Future » Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:45 pm

I am going to write some thoughts here that will probably be misinterpreted. But try to understand me.

I think it is great that the fellow who thought he could safely take his boat through Queen Charlotte Strait this winter was free to try it. I am very grateful he did not die. But I am especially gratified that there was no authority blocking him from the attempt. That spirit of adventure, being allowed to express itself, to me, is the only thing that makes life worth living.

Now the flip side: I am very sad to see that a Coast Guardsman lost his life from the results of an accident during a rescue this week. http://www.adn.com/2013/12/18/3237396/c ... k=misearch So how do you weigh the freedom for people to live their own lives against the lives they put into jeopardy when they need help?

Someone could use the results of the winter voyage to argue that all captains should be required to be licensed, etc. But in the end, I believe that is a fallacy. It certainly looks like that captain had enough experience that he could have gotten whatever license he needed. So would that regulation have altered the outcome? I don't think it would, but it would have placed undue burden on a lot of people who are trying to captain their own boat.

Anyway, early on in "Moby Dick" the author gave the example of when he catches himself "looking too longingly at the hearse going by" that he signs on for a whaling trip. In other words, when life has gotten so miserable that he is vaguely contemplating suicide, that he instead antes up for a big adventure. Life once again becomes an exciting challenge, and he is living robustly. Do those who favor regulations understand that? That there are those of us, who if you put us in a padded cell of regulations to prolong our lives, would rather not live at all?

I guess all I can conclude for now is that we should all do our damndest to keep ourselves safe while we live our adventures so others don't feel compelled to do it for us.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Salty » Sun Dec 22, 2013 2:26 pm

Agree
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Re: Philosophy

Postby lone eagle » Tue Dec 24, 2013 2:12 pm

several recently purchased boats have run into trouble so I'm left thinking that some guys are offloading problems rather than fixing them. In fact I'd say for certain that that happens
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Re: Philosophy

Postby akfish » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:54 pm

Thats probably true Lone Eagle! Kelper had it right in a post a few days back that usually a couple months climbing around and working on a boat goes a long way before just jumping in and taking off on a long trip.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Kelper » Tue Dec 24, 2013 8:17 pm

Good thread. I've been debating on responding to it.

I agree that often fishermen offload problems. Or, they just put off maintenance for a variety of reasons: they know they are retiring soon, health reasons, they don't have the money, or are just burned out of working on the boat. But, that does present a good buying opportunity for a guy getting into the business as long as he doesn't run it as-is, and he works the boat over before heading off the capes during a 25kt SE.

I'm all for reasonable safety regulations, and dockside inspections. Not so much for the sake of the captain, but for the crews they employ, and the rescuers who have to go looking for them should something go wrong. I might be a bit biased as I'm an ex-coastie flight mechanic and I've also had the displeasure of crewing on a boat that started taking on water, and nothing on the boat seemed to work except a 5 gallon bucket when that emergency happened.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Trnaround » Fri Dec 27, 2013 6:11 am

Good thread, on the philosophy of safety. Most of us are drawn to fishing because of the element of adventure among other things but when we leave the dock there is a lot more at stake than we realize. Not just our own lives but others that will come to our aid if we need and call for them. Most emergencies get handled by "good Samaritans" who are your friends, neighbors or somebody you don't even know that are willing to put themselves at risk and spend their time and efforts help you out. Then if that doesn't do it the Coast Guard will take on the obviously more difficult task of bringing us home. It really is that way and so as professional fisher people it is our responsibility to be as prepared as we can be before we leave the dock so that we can respond effectively if called upon and also be as easy as possible a person to be rescued. I can't imagine the guilt that would happen if I was saved and someone's family member didn't return because of my lack of preparation. So there is a lot at stake and it really is important to step up our game. I am not for mandatory over regulation but I certainly think knowing your boat and getting a GC certification sticker is a good way to be as prepared as you can be for your own sake and others. What is it 2015 that it's mandatory? Do it before you head out next time. Sorry didn't mean to preach.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Salty » Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:05 pm

I agree
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Re: Philosophy

Postby JKD » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:06 pm

Trnaround - That's not preaching, that's talking good sense. I feel very badly for Jacob's brother after his flooding situation on his trip north. I hope his vessel can be recovered and he is able to get another start.

I am an extremely fortunate person. I had a boat sink out from under my crew and I while crab fishing in Lynn Canal in the early 1980s. Before I lost conciousness from hypothermia my young family and the families of my crewmen flashed through my mind. That particular string of memories certainly changed my awareness and my "Philosophy" about operating a vessel and about being directly responsible for all the lives aboard. Since my incident I focus on any reasonable responsible safety precautions on my vessels so I can thoroughly enjoy my 'second chance at life'. I try to stack the odds in my favor. There was a saying I heard in one of the safety-drill instruction courses I took from AMSEA: "When you are out on the water you never know how your day is going to end". Ain't THAT the truth.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Trnaround » Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:03 am

Joe, so well said. Thank you for sharing that difficult experience and insight with us. I will remember those words every time I untie the lines.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby Kelper » Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:56 am

I was really surprised at how "easy" the dockside exam was I had this year. I pulled my boat out side the harbor to check rigging on the poles and the CG was waiting for me. (how's that for good luck!) I was missing an injury placard and something else (can't remember) I had but didn't realize I had.

So, I scheduled a dockside and 3 young coasties showed up. I was very impressed with them, and their attitudes. There was a few minor details I had missed, and they let me correct them on the spot. (writing the dates on the AA batteries in the beacons on my survival suits, and they thought the rope on my throwable was a bit old, so I swapped it out) But, they never looked at anything below deck. I'll be curious if in 2015 they'll actually want to test pumps, high water alarms, inspect wiring, battery boxes, make sure seacocks actually close, etc. They were in and out in 20 or so minutes. Got my sticker, but was actually expecting a much more rigorous inspection.
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Re: Philosophy

Postby lone eagle » Tue Dec 31, 2013 5:40 pm

Did you have your alcohol testing kit? I wonder how that will save your boat
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Re: Philosophy

Postby lone eagle » Tue Dec 31, 2013 5:44 pm

And you gotta have a bag for the survival suit too.....I am not impressed and fear we will be paying tickets before too long
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