If you have ever read Flying Magazine, likely you will recognize the form of this article’s title. Flying Magazine has had “I Learned About Flying from That” for about as long as I can remember. It is a regular feature that conveys a story about piloting technique, planning, weather or some other topic that describes the authors “but for” near miss with a real world hazard. They are passed along to fellow aviators in the hopes that, in the sharing, they can save at least one poor soul from having to learn the same lesson the hard way. They are effective. In my forty year flying career, both personal and professional, I’ve learned a ton by reading them and applying what they’ve taught. The aviation community routinely shares information about mishaps in the spirit of working to blunt their typical progression to a more serious accident if left unrecognized or unchecked. That’s true for private flying, commercial aviation and the military services too.
I find sailors and the sailing community are very much like pilots and the flying community. Most are people who are mission focused, serious about what they are doing and, whether they are doing it for fun or for a living, endeavor to learn as much about the subject as they can. Also like pilots, it has been my observation that they tend to apply what they learn. A significant difference between the two communities though, is the writing. As to sailing, I seem to only read about major threats at sea like surviving in force 10 conditions, for example. I don’t seem to see much written on the day-to-day mishaps sailors are experiencing that others might benefit from hearing about. Instinct tells me that if I called a dozen marine surveyors, I’d confirm that they are happening. I’m just not reading about them.
Let’s take a page from the aviator’s play book and share some stories that will make us all better and safer sailors. Tell us your stories. Drop us a line! The publishers of the Morris Service Newsletter are looking for owner involvement and what better way than by sharing your experiences. I’ll be sharing a few of mine and in the first installment, “I Learned About Sailing from That: Result of Wishful Planning”.