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Old 09-28-2019, 09:47 PM   #1
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What is your greatest fear?

My greatest fear is a marina fire and today it was close to becoming a reality.

Yesterday I boarded my boat with Max, my 9lb. Maltese. Iím determined to get a few nuisance projects done so I planned on staying onboard for a few days.

For months I have complained about a an older large boat on my dock with a terrible gas smell every time I walked by. The couple who own it live aboard. Honestly I donít know how. We all know how dangerous gas can be.

1pm this afternoon, fire rescue arrived along with FWC and the police department. One of the tanks on that boat let go and gasoline was pouring into the hull. The owner was using a shop vac (electric) to try and get it out. Needless to say, power was cut to the vessel and and the fire dept. came to each boat on my dock to evacuate us. This is my greatest fear. A marina fire. I calmly told the firefighter, I would be untying my boat and leaving my slip. My intent was to anchor out until the all clear was given. Luckily this did not happen. The boat in question is still here with holes in the fuel tank. Donít light a match.

So, my greatest fear is a marina fire, what is yours?
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Old 09-28-2019, 09:58 PM   #2
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You really dodged a bullet then. There have been documented incidents where people have tried to use a shop vac to vacuum up gas and blew up the boat. Glad you werenít hurt. Fire aboard a boat is the worst thing that can happen.
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Old 09-28-2019, 09:59 PM   #3
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My greatest fear is to lose my mind and become crazy looking at the list of things to do on my boat!

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Old 09-28-2019, 11:42 PM   #4
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When I was young, about 1965, a wood 65' former aviation rescue boat with Hall Scott gas engines, blew up in a marina. It sank 3 other boats. I was a couple hundred yards away and turned to look. Big fire ball, wood and boats parts maybe 100' in the air. Wood splinters/planks damaged many other boats. In those days, many boats had house glass and it all blew out. It was mid-morning and a winter week, so not too many people around. The owner survived with burns on his legs and a lot of bruises. He later stated, he was in a hurry and didn't use the blowers.


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Old 09-29-2019, 12:44 AM   #5
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My greatest fear is to lose my mind and become crazy looking at the list of things to do on my boat!

L
My greatest fear is not to lose my mind looking at the list of things to do.
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Old 09-29-2019, 02:11 AM   #6
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Considering disasters or tragic loss of life and/or boats are usually the result of a series of contributing factors (giving one a chance to either avoid or minimize its effects) my greatest fear would be something which nothing I could do could ever prevent it...like a huge block of granite popping off a cliff or landslide screaming down a mountain creating a locally destructive tsunami.
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Old 09-29-2019, 04:36 AM   #7
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Happy you and the boat are OK Donna.


Goes to show that even the nicer marinas still can contain hazards.


This incident a black eye for liveaboards.


Those of us liveaboads that have sensors and alarms and are always around usually catch bad stuff before other boaters....not long after. Plus the shop vac debacle, really makes us look like threats to the boating population.
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Old 09-29-2019, 05:34 AM   #8
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Recreational boats will cease to exist either by the climate change sobers or the gross wealth tax folks demanding 5% to 50% of the boats value annually.

Boating been great fun ,while still permitted.
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Old 09-29-2019, 05:56 AM   #9
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Glad you're safe Donna! Large gasoline inboard boats scare me when you can smell the gas.

Other boaters are my greatest fear. There are lots of safe boaters, and enough that aren't safe either through intentional actions or ignorance. In pursuit of a good time, it's amazing how many people do crazy things with their boats. Start with the percentage on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon that are intoxicated and operating a boat in congested waterways. While running my charter boat carrying scuba divers, I always contended that the highest risk was making it from the seabuoy to my slip on a Saturday afternoon.

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Old 09-29-2019, 05:57 AM   #10
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I have crossed the Gulf of Alaska numerous times and even in June when the darkness is at a minimum I fear that bump in the dark of night that says OMG, you hit something. Yeah, that scares me. No SeaTow, no other boaters and hours away from any assistance. It is a lonely feeling for sure.
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Old 09-29-2019, 06:21 AM   #11
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Being hit by a barge at night, because I've already had two close calls.

Once while asleep on someone else's boat, waking up, and coming out the hatch, and seeing one about to hit us, and once meeting one at a blind narrow turn in the ICW at midnight.

Not saying that they both weren't avoidable (and both of these incidents predated AIS). They were. But, still, they happened, and it was scary as you know what.

We also had an incident down here a few years ago, where a barge strayed from the ICW channel one night (it was a bend in the channel, and the tugboat just kept going straight), and ran over an anchored sailboat, killing the couple in it, and pushing the boat into the mud (they weren't found for a couple of weeks), and the barge and tug, didn't even know it had happened, until the Coast Guard came and checked their barge a few months later.

I think about that every time I anchor anywhere along the ICW where a barge could possible stray out of the channel.
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Old 09-29-2019, 06:29 AM   #12
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What is your greatest fear?

Wow Donna , Iím betting you arenít going to sleep as comfortably onboard for a while.
My biggest concern of staying onboard is the same as yours with the exception of your experience brought reality into the picture. Glad you came through unharmed and only inconvenienced.
Iíve never been crazy about being berthed in a marina with other boats. In my lifetime Iíve seen too many catastrophic marina fires , some with casualties. When weíre on ours, I sleep better knowing itís as safe as I can make it. All of the effort weíve put into the boat checking the integrity of the tanks, wiring, safety systems/alarms is almost totally negated if weíre tied up next to someone in a marina that doesnít have the same regard for safety and preventative maintenance as we do.
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Old 09-29-2019, 06:51 AM   #13
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I was crossing Lake Michigan in dense fog (daylight) last Spring when out of the murk appeared an 8-10 foot section of floating dock...steel frame, plastic float chambers, concrete walk surface....flock of seagulls aboard. No time to maneuver. It passed down the side of the boat not more than 25 feet away. I travel a lot at night, and fear smacking into something like that. Lots of junk out there with the incredible increase in water levels.

In our last marina the main hazard was unmanned run-away boats whose anchor lost purchase in a passing thunderstorm...clearly insufficient scope. It got so bad that a fellow marina resident and I kept a dinghy at the ready and set a watch when we knew a blow was coming. We could spot the likely candidates by looking at the angle of their rode. One summer we boarded two out of four runaways and managed to get the engine started on one, and throw an extra anchor out on another. Both were on a collision course for boats in the marina. Owners were at lunch or shopping in the village. Sailboats and trawlers.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:01 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lou_tribal View Post
My greatest fear is to lose my mind and become crazy looking at the list of things to do on my boat!

L
My greatest fear is the IRS will find me before I die.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:25 AM   #15
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...All of the effort weíve put into the boat checking the integrity of the tanks, wiring, safety systems/alarms is almost totally negated if weíre tied up next to someone in a marina that doesnít have the same regard for safety and preventative maintenance as we do.
There is an unoccupied sailboat next to us in our marina with moss growing on its lines, sheets, and gunwales. A dim light is visible inside when darkness falls. My wife and I joke that perhaps someone long dead is moldering aboard. Now Iím beginning to think we should talk to the marina about the potential hazard the boat represents.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:30 AM   #16
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Iím glad Iím not alone with this fear. As I was unhooking my electric, I only left 2 rope lines attached to the dock. Single handing my boat is not fun, but I knew I could do it given the circumstances. I stayed onboard last night. Just hoping tow boat gets them out of here today.

I know my limitations and know a fuel leak is not something Iím willing to take on even though Iím diesel for the safety of myself and others around me.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:33 AM   #17
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There is an unoccupied sailboat next to us in our marina with moss growing on its lines, sheets, and gunwales. A dim light is visible inside when darkness falls. My wife and I joke that perhaps someone long dead is moldering aboard. Now Iím beginning to think we should talk to the marina about the potential hazard the boat represents.
A discussion with the marina dock master/management is a reasonable thought. After the discussion, make notes, names, time, date, talking points and conclusions.
Consider putting all this in the ship's log, if you keep one.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:35 AM   #18
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There is an unoccupied sailboat next to us in our marina with moss growing on its lines, sheets, and gunwales. A dim light is visible inside when darkness falls. My wife and I joke that perhaps someone long dead is moldering aboard. Now Iím beginning to think we should talk to the marina about the potential hazard the boat represents.
Absolutely! My concerns went unanswered for months and yesterday seemed like a surprise to the marina. Oh thatís right, Iím a woman. Guess they didnít take me seriously. Even the firefighter that knocked on my door couldnít believe I jumped off my boat and started untying and un hooking. Either get on board and help me or get out of my way.

I would at the very least have a welfare check done on that sailboat.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:55 AM   #19
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My biggest boating fear is getting caught in a storm, miles from shore, having the rocking and rolling stir up some gremlins in my fuel tanks. I have a hard enough time changing filters and priming the system tied to a dock. Can't imagine what it would be like with five footers hitting my beam.

I am "anal" about my filters and tanks and where I buy my fuel. But still...

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Old 09-29-2019, 08:33 AM   #20
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My biggest fear is fire aboard. Yes, a neighboring boat fire at a marina is a serious concern. But fire aboard when away from help is my biggest fear. In the event of a marina fire I would likely have avenues of escape. The boat may be a loss but that's recoverable. A fire aboard when in a remote BC or Ak area would be another matter entirely.

My next biggest fear and not far behind fire is flooding. My boat, and I think most recreational boats, don't have good watertight integrity. Major flooding anywhere in the boat could flood the engine room and disable the boat and the ability to de-water.
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