Lendy Cowes Week 2018 – Day 7 – Death at Sea
The announcement that there has been a fatality today was truly shocking.
It has been confirmed the man in his 60’s who was taken to St Mary’s Hospital, Newport was pronounced dead on arrival. The authorities are investigating the circumstances.
Competitiors ignored a gale warning which was issued at 21.36 last night forecasting rough seas in sea area Wight and the organisers set courses for today’s racing.
Thousands set sail during Cowes Week ranging from couples struggling with an unfamiliar charter yacht, to vessels with large crews who regularly sail together. Some yachts we photographed had children on board.
It is the responsibility of each individual skipper to decide whether to go to sea or stay on the mooring and it’s important to listen to the weather forecast. Sometimes it is a difficult decision to take.
Losing a crew at sea is a terrible experience and must be every skipper’s dread.
Over the last thirty years I’ve personally met two, and both claimed at the time that they would continue to sail, yet within 12 months their boats were up for sale and they had been forced to find a new past time.
Crew also have to know their own capabilities. I am a 60 year old man and was out on the water last Sunday on the press boat kindly supplied by the organisers.
It was perfect sailing weather but after an hour and a half of holding a camera with two hands and trying to balance at the same time on a rapidly pitching deck, I was exhausted and went to sit in the cabin.
Our skipper, who had superbly taken us from one photo opportunity to the next, asked if I wanted to go back onshore.
Reluctantly I had to say yes, even though weather wise, there might never be another day quite like it. They quickly dropped me off and went back out again.
Magenta Edwards, the News’s arts and culture editor, asked to comment over the death said;
“How sad, our thoughts are with the family.”