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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by timbartlett View Post
    Applied sensibly. Hmmm. If only that could be guaranteed. Then all we would need to do would be to define sensibly. Would it, for instance, mean "applied only to motor boats?"

    I wonder how many alcohol related fatalities involve "high powered mobos"?
    And how many involve people pottering back to their boats, in the dark, in under-inflated dinghies with slightly dodgy outboards? Or narrowboats, pottering along @ <4kts?

    We shall see.
    You just have to read the reports to see what sort of boats are involved in accidents - with or without drink. They simply do not conform to the stereotypes used in general observation. Suspect that PWCs will not be included unless they are specifically defined in the regulations - the last proposals would not have included them, nor many of the boats in which people were actually killed.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tranona View Post

    Please do not take this as condoning drinking and operating a boat.

    If you agree that it is a bad idea why do you have a problem with it being made illegal?

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by prv View Post
    What's that got to do with it?

    Pete
    The fact that the resources available to the authorities will automatically limit their ability to test everyone - they will focus on people that are behaving in ways that are potentially dangerous.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by wadget View Post
    If you agree that it is a bad idea why do you have a problem with it being made illegal?
    Don't have to. It is already illegal and has been for nearly 10 years. What I don't agree with (along with many others) the need for the prescriptive regulations on "enforcement" as a deterrent when there is little evidence that it is either a problem or the "problem" if there is one will be solved by the regulations as proposed. The law already allows prosecution, either under the Act or under bye laws. It is rarely used which suggests that there are very few cases where it is needed - back to the evidence.

    There does not seem to be pressure from harbour authorities etc for extra powers, nor do they seem to make an issue of excessive drinking as a major cause of accidents involving boats. Harbour authorities can already establish bye laws equivalent to the proposed regulations if they wish (as the PLA has done) - but rarely uses the power.

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by timbartlett View Post
    Applied sensibly. Hmmm. If only that could be guaranteed. Then all we would need to do would be to define sensibly. Would it, for instance, mean "applied only to motor boats?"

    I wonder how many alcohol related fatalities involve "high powered mobos"?
    And how many involve people pottering back to their boats, in the dark, in under-inflated dinghies with slightly dodgy outboards? Or narrowboats, pottering along @ <4kts?

    We shall see.
    People pottering in dinghies with dodgy outboards are not putting anyone other than themselves in any significant danger. People travelling at high speed or on very large boats in confined waters are potentially very dangerous to small boats and swimmers.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tranona View Post
    Don't have to. It is already illegal and has been for nearly 10 years. What I don't agree with (along with many others) the need for the prescriptive regulations on "enforcement" as a deterrent when there is little evidence that it is either a problem or the "problem" if there is one will be solved by the regulations as proposed. The law already allows prosecution, either under the Act or under bye laws. It is rarely used which suggests that there are very few cases where it is needed - back to the evidence.

    There does not seem to be pressure from harbour authorities etc for extra powers, nor do they seem to make an issue of excessive drinking as a major cause of accidents involving boats. Harbour authorities can already establish bye laws equivalent to the proposed regulations if they wish (as the PLA has done) - but rarely uses the power.
    Laws that have to be applied are laws that have failed. We use the fear of the law as the incentive to behave responsibly. I suspect that most boat owners are currently under the impression that they are free to have a skinfull without risk of prosecution.

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tranona View Post
    .........and the other was a drunken party of 6 who went for a ride in the middle of the night and hit a harbour wall.
    If that is a reference to the "Sea Snake" they neither hit a harbour wall nor was there evidence that all 6 or any were "drunk" although the alcohol levels of the helms were reported.

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by wadget View Post
    If you agree that it is a bad idea why do you have a problem with it being made illegal?
    The pending law applies to anyone who "is exercising, or purporting or attempting to exercise, a function in connection with the navigation of the ship". On most British yachts it is hard to define which of the people on board are in this category. For the law to work you would need compulsory licensing, so that the identity of the person in charge of the vessel is known (and so that licence can be taken away from persistent offenders if necessary, as otherwise Mr Sunseeker will happily keep paying the fines). So if you support the pending law, I believe you will have to accept the likelihood that operator licensing will follow, and that vessel licensing may not be far behind, with all the cost and bureaucracy we see on the Continent.

    I'd rather use existing law and not pass more laws that are out of proportion with the extent of the problem.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by awol View Post
    If that is a reference to the "Sea Snake" they neither hit a harbour wall nor was there evidence that all 6 or any were "drunk" although the alcohol levels of the helms were reported.
    You are correct. The boat hit a rocky foreshore just inside the harbour entrance, rather than a wall. The report stated that "The postmortem examination toxicology tests on the bodies of the two helmsmen showed that both were nearly 2 1/2 times over the drink driving limit for motor vehicles".

    Given that the proposed limits in the drink boating legislation are the same as for drink driving, it is reasonable to assume that this would have been a sound basis for a successful prosecution. However, there is no definitive evidence that the cause of the accident was that the helmsman was drunk. However no prosecutions were brought because the two people concerned were dead.

    If you look at most of the other cases (4 in total) out of the 35 that resulted in deaths or injuries you will find only one where drink is clearly a cause. In all the others (such as this one) there is only an association - in other words the casualties had been known to be drinking, but there was no evidence that drink was a direct cause of the accident. In one other case (Morphil) drink was shown as a contributory factor but not a cause, and there were no casualties.

  10. #70
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    BTW, the Ragwort Control Act -- same year as the Railway and Transport Safety Act. It's only two pages, most of which is taken up with coats of arms and preamble about her most excellent majesty and lords spiritual and temporal and such-like guff. [/QUOTE]

    Fantastic!

    I didn't know about that.

    That's now my /second/ favourite piece of legislation, after the Interpretation (Stating The Obvious) Act 1978:

    References to distance.
    In the measurement of any distance for the purposes of an Act, that distance shall, unless the contrary intention appears, be measured in a straight line on a horizontal plane.

    References to time of day.
    Subject to section 3 of the Summer Time Act 1972 (construction of references to points of time during the period of summer time), whenever an expression of time occurs in an Act, the time referred to shall, unless it is otherwise specifically stated, be held to be Greenwich mean time.

    References to the Sovereign.
    In any Act a reference to the Sovereign reigning at the time of the passing of the Act is to be construed, unless the contrary intention appears, as a reference to the Sovereign for the time being
    "when the ship arrives in a wine country, there the master shall procure them wine to drink." Article XVII, Rules Of Oleron

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