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Old 15 March 2005, 08:24   #31
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Mitigating circumstances before sentence!

Very happy to put myself in the firing line when I have done something wrong - as I did. I hope I made that clear in my original post. I am only keen to help any other folks who have even less experience than me to remember things they might have forgotten - or might never have been told. I am not proud of the mistakes, but I have no intention of concealing my errors for reasons of ego, but instead hope that someone else learns from them. There but for the grace of God go any of us!

I plead mitigating circumstances in that we did most emphatically not plan to do a night trip and be out that late - we were quite cold and tired as well

I agree with much that has been said - however - tackling the comments in the order of posting:-

So: Tim Griffin first: Yes it is true it is written on the chart. And I had the chart with me. But it was dark, and the chart was in a locker. While it was not my first time in the area at the mouth of the Southampton water, and previously I had given the ships a wide berth, and while I am sure at some point I had read the chart and must have read about the exclusion zone, the figure of as much as 1000m never registered. I do not believe it was mentioned on my PB2 which was done on the river at Medina Valley or my 2 day refresher course which was done at Yarmouth:

(a) it had not impacted on me - the seriousness of it
(b) it was dark, I was not used to running in the dark, and even if I had remembered the 1000m would possibly have not been able to estimate a safe distance.
(c) in fact, I had trouble recognising the lights for what it was - a container ship - and it appeared stationary. I assumed it was waiting for the tide to come in.

There is a huge amount of information on the chart, and it is not easy to absorb it all, as a beginner.

I sympathise with the master of the vessel most strongly.

(more to come)
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Old 15 March 2005, 08:38   #32
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More to come

Jono - no, not me on the motorway.... not since before Christmas from Fareham to Lymington.

Louise - no way did we plan to be out at night. I too have spent time on the Reed's and getting to know the hazards. I have Solent hazards and Isle of Wight Hazards and the one down the coast westwards. I have also read them and enjoyed them greatly. But there is loads and loads and loads to absorb, and, joke, I was worried more about running aground than big ships!

I plead to not having a huge amount of time to read such things, though, running my own company. What seems to missing is a big 20 list of Solent NOT TOOS which would include Ryde Sands and Big Ships!

Mark Halliday Guess I do get between the ship and HM launch. But I did not see the launch and its blue flashing light until I presume well after it started coming towards us.

Paul Actually I would admit to not knowing Ryde Bank specifically before Saturday. I made a huge mistake - see later.

Louise Lack of planning was key. I accept that. But I assumed experience in the other boat. That was what attracted us to the RibNet event. And, no, I don't blame Dave - I never checked his level of experience of length of boat ownership, not his planning. I just followed. It is as much - more - my fault as his. I just followed - twice. That is the huge mistake.

Rogue Wave Would love to. But here the problem of being a businessman, moving houses, having elderly relatives, three kids away from home AND a new boat makes time management a challenge. I accept that the actions of the Harbour Master were correct. Thank you for explaining why he illuminated us. But he was a little harsh in his language. He gave me the pamphlet - how I wish I had been given that on my PB2! Seeing VTS would be great too. I accept the criticism of making on the spur of the moment changes to the plan.
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Old 15 March 2005, 08:41   #33
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Bruce please forgive me if you think i was having a pop i was not

I pointed out where the information is.
I think you are ready for your next course as you are undertaking more ambitious cruises.
Chart work and passage planning is in your level2 Coastal Endorsement and should have been covered.
It was daylight when you ran aground you could have planned your return journey then.
Always carry a good torch in your safety equipment
I admire you for coming on here and being so honest and open as to the events .
That's what is good about forums such as this one, and others we can all share information and learn from each other. Please don't be put off by this event many have offered support and help , take them up on it .
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Old 15 March 2005, 08:57   #34
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still more - sorry, but this is I believe important

Alex - great post. Thank you. Please do post more details of what shipping does exactly. That can only help increase our knowledge.

I will do more reading before I go out again, I promise.

Mark - this is key. I was relying on my plotter. I was not even looking at it when we ran aground earlier in the day, so I was glued to it - Jo was at the helm - as we came up the Solent from Ryde. I admit to not knowing how to find the byelaws on my plotter - it is a Lowrance 7000C - anyone tell me? - the manual is down at Lymington - it is another HUGE read....

jwalker I appreciate you not being kind. Don't worry, I know I need to learn. No offence taken cos I am sure none was meant.

I plead to not having read badbaws post - I simply do not have time to read everything on here - but will do so when I finish this. Can you post a thread reference, please, in case I or anyone else can't find it?

Yeah, plead guilty to lacking a bit of savvy. I am at least honest enough to say that, and have described myself a number of times as a newbie. I thought this was at least part of what this forum was for - so people like me could learn.

You assumption that I lack experience and knowledge is correct - but isn't that true of any beginner? The boat arrived in September 05 and before that I was a coast hugger in a SIB for six months. I was out at night crossing shipping lanes by mistake due to an earlier problem, not by choice. If I had done so voluntarily given my lack of experience, I would plead guilty as charged.

Recovering my boat. jwalker, no one has ever helped me launch or recover my boat, except kind passers by who have mixed usefulness! Neither launching nor recovery were covered on either of the courses I did. I have learned by reading up on it (Mr White for example) and reading posts on here. I have probably recovered her no more than 6 times in total so far. I have always been as careful as I can, and put safety at the top of the list. So a gel coat knock seems a minor price to pay. I would love some practical launches, recoveries under expert tutillage, and am happy to pay for it. I was not aware until someone kindly PM'ed me with an offer to help and someone else posted that this was even on offer as training.

I do not think launch / recovery expertise or lack of it is really related to night navigation and big ships. I have done my best to learn everything I should learn.

Yes, i have been planning to go out with Stu - since the offer was made earlier this year, I think. But personal circumstances make it hard at the moment.

I do have an almanac . I promise to study harder the charts, would welcome a suggested reading list, advice on which mags are worth it, and I promise to keep out of shipping lanes for the forseable future

I want to do another course, but only if it covers the things that matter!
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Old 15 March 2005, 09:03   #35
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final thoughts

simmons0 Don't accept that you were any more at fault than me

jwalker Agreed. My responsibility.

garf Brilliant. No comment needed!

badbaws Yes to knowledge test. Please. But, guys, there are people racing down Lymington river at 15 knots with no lifejackets, and kiddies without them on the bench forward of the console. What do they know of byelaws...

pettal I agree - but the night trip was not planned - unless I stayed on Ryde Sands until daybreak

Rogue Wave meeting some of these guys would be a real help. - But not on their boat when they are upset!

Thank you all for your comments. Feel free to come back at me in private or public!

Cheers

Bruce
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Old 15 March 2005, 09:06   #36
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I did not think you were taking a pop!

I accpet that these things should have been in my PB2. But I genuinely think no one ever told Jo and I about the 1000m rolling exclusion zone.

We have a good torch. And we should have planned on the sands - I accept that.

Bruce

Quote:
Originally Posted by tim griffin
Bruce please forgive me if you think i was having a pop i was not

I pointed out where the information is.
I think you are ready for your next course as you are undertaking more ambitious cruises.
Chart work and passage planning is in your level2 Coastal Endorsement and should have been covered.
It was daylight when you ran aground you could have planned your return journey then.
Always carry a good torch in your safety equipment
I admire you for coming on here and being so honest and open as to the events .
That's what is good about forums such as this one, and others we can all share information and learn from each other. Please don't be put off by this event many have offered support and help , take them up on it .
Regards
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Old 15 March 2005, 09:31   #37
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Wow, what a thread

Big respect to Bruce for pleading guilt here on the WWW, and repect to so many ribnetters for being so supportive.

I think that maybe Bruce has done something that many Ribbers do and that is to put himself in a situation he is not ready for i.e. in this case high speed navigation at night.

These skills and experience can not be taught on just three two day courses. Students need to understand that following each course some consolidation time is required to gain more experinec of the skills learnt. The level 2 course is essentially a boat handling course with a little taster of chartwork and GPS. Following the L2 course I would reccomend drivers to gain experience in their own local area. I would not define around the island and the whole solent as anyones local area, it is in fact a vast and very varied area.

The intermediate course then looks at passage planning, electronic navigation and longer distance cruising. While seeming labourious it pays to spend some time in the classroom learning the navigation theory. This could be by way of the 5 day RYA dayskiper Shorebased course or perhaps on a bespoke course over 2 or 3 days concentrating on the areas specific to you.

Regarding lack of training on launching RIBs it would seem to me that the answer is to get someone who has experince to show you how, and make you aware of the pitfalls. This does not have to be an RYA Instructor it can just as easily be a friend.

If you have time to go cruising then you have time to learn the skills required first.
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Old 15 March 2005, 10:25   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brucehawsker
But he was a little harsh in his language.
One of my pet hates is jobsworths abusing their position It's a fact of life that, at some point, leisure users will come into conflict with commercial operations. I've had fall outs with RN, harbour patrol and a particularly obnoxious MOD police boat skipper who wanted me to move off my mark. He used abusive language and would not give a reason why he wanted me to move from somewhere I was perfectly entitled to be. I stood my ground and he got all hot under the collar and was making all sorts of threats. When I asked for his shoulder number so I could have a little chat with his boss he backed off.

There was an incident in Freshwater bay last year involving a famous hardboater who frequents this forum but shall remain nameless. The independent lifeboat crew were insisting he show them his VHF licence when licence enforcement is bugger all to do with them. The fact that he's to tight to buy one is beside the point.

Politeness doesn't cost a dime.

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Old 15 March 2005, 11:51   #39
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Wow - what a thread and an interesting lesson for novices like us

I'm just glad we didn't take up the offer of a trip back home the long way round ... I can see we would probably have been in the same sort of trouble.

All credit to Bruce for all the comments.

J
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Old 15 March 2005, 12:10   #40
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Respect

Take my hat off to ya Bruce, and I quite agree no matter how many courses you do there is no substitute for actually going out there and doing it. So long as you learn by your mistakes thats the main thing. I have, because I was the pompey-calshot boat who he sought out earlier in the day. Did exactly the same thing, but the guy was ok and we ended the chat with a laugh. Yes I should no better, RYA coastal A & b, yachtmaster and many years crewing for other people as well as me old man. But I learnt and it wont happen again.

This is why I joined this forum, back to boating after a long layoff and it has helped me no end. Unfortunately I do find that some members attitude to this matter seem to be rather harsh. I too came on the solent cruise to gain more experience not just for me, but for my partner who is a novice. We never stop learning. I did a weeks course for my hgv1 and then I was let loose with 44t thats what I call a learning curve.

Well done to ya mate and dont let it dampen your enjoyment.

All the best to ya Bruce

Martin
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