Just as you cannot guarantee that a drunk driver on the way to work will not kill you, you cannot guarantee that you will return from the sea. The best you can do is increase you chances to near certainly.

If you get a chance to read accounts of what happens in emergencies,  beyond these writings, take advantage of other’s failure, gain experience from reading them (http://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/reports_marine.html). It will give you a new perspective on what can and does happen. A simple internet search for disaster at sea , boating accidents or other search reveals some pretty interesting stories.

Three things become evident in most emergencies where there is major damage or people die:

  1. More than one thing goes wrong at once
  2. People panic adding to the problem
  3. There seems to be an acceleration of bad news. Things get worse faster as the emergency continues

In an emergency, bad news accelerates. One mishap causes another and in a short time you have a roaring emergency. Plans are necessary to allow cool thinking and fast action to stop the acceleration.

A good plan results in clear thinking. With a good plan, you help keep your problems down to one at a time. It reduces your panic, giving you more control. It is a lot easier to follow a well thought out plan that was prepared in advance, rather than one sketched out in the heat of panic. This book will instruct you in creating such a plan .

These chapters will serve to aid the reader in determining the reliability of your boat. How reliable is it? How reliable should it be? You can analyze the reliability and learn how to maintain the components of your boat to increase reliability. It is my goal to help you understand what components and features, when added to your boat, will assure that you get where you are going and back again safe and secure. Drawing from my background in military equipment design, I will take a systems engineering approach to reliability and provide an objective analytical approach to marine reliability, safety, and longevity.

If you have an example of a disaster, why not tell us about it.

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