A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Brad Morris
Date: 2014 Feb 10, 18:32 -0500
Every news report was running with the story of a
H U R R I C A N E
and a large one at that.
What prudent mariner sails without checking the sea state? Many here do regularly sail: Do you blindly leave port without a glance at the sea state, even on a normal day? I should think not! Add a powerful hurricane to the mix. You still don't check the sea state? Hmmm.
Wave celerity is a function of the wave period. Based upon the periods I saw, waves generated in that hurricane could cross the *entire* Atlantic Ocean in roughly 40 hours. That's Africa to Long Island. Except the hurricane wasn't by Africa, it was by the Carolinas.
If he wasn't aware, he was an idiot. If he was aware (absent proof of extreme isolation) then, as the NTSB states, he was reckless.
I certainly did not know of any negligence of ship maintenance. Rather, I contend the maintenance was contributory, not causative.
Put an any ship, let alone a 3 masted one, in those sea states and high winds and the danger of broach and capsize is extraordinary. Those were very large waves with some periods recorded at 33 seconds! I agree that the condition of the ship was contributory. That didn't make it any easier for the ship to live. In the end, it wouldn't have mattered. She was done the moment that captain "recklessly" chose to leave port
Here's an analogy. Do not maintain the brakes on your car. Enter it into the upcoming Daytona 500, a high speed racing contest. Drive blindfolded (ignoring the sea state of professional race car drivers intent on winning and you losing). Did you wreck because your brakes sucked or because of your reckless judgment?