The Royal Yachting Association responds to the announcement of Sail8 with some advice for those thinking of taking part
RYA Response to Sail 8
“Crossing the Channel in a small boat requires skill, knowledge, experience and judgement. It also demands a seaworthy and well-maintained vessel, with proper navigation and safety equipment. Finally, a typical 12 hours passage in a sailing boat needs the right combination of tides and weather, with an effective plan for crossing one of the busiest commercial shipping routes in the world.
There are plenty of owners on the South Coast who have the boats, experience and ability to support Sail 8. If they want to do so, we would like to wish them well. Our only advice would be to prepare thoroughly, and not to overlook the customs, immigration and insurance issues.
Owners who have any doubts at all about their skills and ability, or the capabilities of their craft, should find other ways to answer Sir Bob Geldof’s plea for help and support. Putting yourself and your crew in danger, not to mention any passengers you may be carrying or those who may need to come to your aid, is not part of good seamanship. We are sure that Sir Bob recognises that the RYA could never support that, whatever the other merits of the cause in question.”