...but the helsman should not have been putting a group of paying customers (including children) in a situation where stuffing the bow was even remotely possilbe.
I don't agree. Yes - IF
you are going to stuff it (hmm, right), or conditions mean that you are likely to, but the 2 stuffs I've had have been in quite benign conditions - one of those with passengers.
First stuff - (as I've mentioned elsewhere on here) with wind over tide over the bar at Barmouth on a big spring tide. I'd never seen a stretch of water change so fast in my life, 2-3 ft swell and a F4 going to short steep 10-12 foot breaking waves in less than 20 minutes (while I'd been out). The stuff was slow (low energy) so no-one got thrown around and nothing got damaged, and we drove through it - but I still stuffed it.
Second stuff - driving an Altantic 75 and falling into a 'hole' in the wake patterns of a Mersey class ALB
. It was F5/6 and sea conditions were slight - still managed it tho. (In my defence m'lud, I wasn't informed that the bow ballast tank was full, so it didn't behave as I was expecting at that point...and as I was the only one not in a dry-suit - nobody was that bothered...).
Having said that - I don't understand how the skipper could manage to do that without being qualified. I had to jump through hoops to prove to the council that I was.
And my insurance doesn't limit me to 25kts - although my advertising doesn't use the words 'adrenaline', 'ultimate' etc. I think it goes as far as 'Exciting', or maybe even 'Exhilarating' but that's about it...