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Re: [bolger] Boating fatalities (Pirates)

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  • Richard Spelling
    http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/pirates/44096 http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/pirates/44213 http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/pirates/44265 ... From:
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 24, 2002

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "GarthAB" <garth@...>
      To: <bolger@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 9:55 AM
      Subject: [bolger] Boating fatalities

      > The earlier discussion of a Micro ocean crossing got me wondering:
      > just how many people DO die each year offshore? We tend to hear the
      > heroic stories of those who survived difficult conditions, but the
      > dead ones often have no one to tell their tale. I did a Google search
      > for boating fatalities, and didn't find the one nugget of statistics
      > that would answer my question, but did find these US Coast Guard
      > documents. I'll paste in a link to a web page where you can download
      > USCG accident and fatality reports by year.
      > www.uscgboating.org/statistics/accident_stats.htm
      > The reports are in PDF and about 180-200K so I won't link you to the
      > docs themselves. But a glance through the 2000 report is pretty
      > instructive.
      > -- 519 boaters drowned in 2000, and there were 701 total fatalities
      > (most years total fatalities are between 700 and 900).
      > -- Wearing a life jacket would have saved about 445 of these people
      > -- 83% of all fatalities occured in boats under 26' in length
      > -- Alcohol was involved in 31% of all accidents.
      > -- Nearly 70% of all accidents involved some "operator-controllable"
      > factor like carelessness,inattention, recklessness, inexperience,
      > unsafe speed, or no lookout.
      > -- a very large percentage of accidentsand fatalities occured
      > on "open motorboats." Sailboats had a fairly small percentage.
      > "Canoes and kayaks" were second to the open motorboats.
      > -- The biggest percentage of deaths occurred in CALM, WARM water and
      > light winds.
      > -- And, closest data to my question: the USCG breaks down the
      > accident and fatality data into "Type of Body of Water."
      > The category "Ocean/Gulf" had 33 fatalities out of 701, for about
      > 4.7% of the total. The Great Lakes (doesn't say how close to shore)
      > accounted for 23 more.
      > The biggest numbers were "Rivers, streams and creeks" with 234
      > fatalities, and "Lakes, ponds, reservoirs, dams" with 304.
      > "Bays, Inlets, Sounds, Harbors" accounted for 68.
      > There's a ton of info here for the morbidly curious. It's all very
      > sobering and makes me want to wear a PFD even here at my computer.
      > The numbers are skewed of course, because far more people -- and
      > especially the inexperienced and unprepared ones -- go boating on
      > lakes and streams than ever venture out into the open sea, so we'll
      > never really get a clear picture of the relative risk. But the
      > absolute numbers are interesting.
      > All best,
      > Garth
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