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Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 1:01 pm
by mm5aho
I sailed past some moored yachts last weekend, and noted one had a rope trailing something floating.
Wondering what that was, I went a little closer and, although it was dark, I could just see that it was a life-ring floating on a rope tied to the boat. The boat appeared to be un-manned, but it was dark and late at night, they might have been asleep.

Pondering if I should go over and "rescue" the ring (well horseshoe), with the slight risk of collision (was pretty calm really), and the perception that I might be nicking something off a moored boat in the dark, I ended up not doing anything.

Should I have just gone on and picked up the ring and secured it aboard, perhaps leaving a note for the owner?

Or was I right to look the other way, wondering how it got dislodged?

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 11:06 am
by mm5aho
70 views, no answers.
Its a genuine question!

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:08 pm
by Mercian
As a fellow R32 owner (not that its relevant!) heres my thoughts. I would have picked it up and left it in the cockpit if it was safe and convenient to do so. Don't think I would have bothered with a note. Be convenient I mean that as I often sail single handed if I had full sail up I doubt if I would bother, it was still tied to the boat so wasn't going anywhere.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:17 pm
by Storyline
Think what I would have done, considering it was dark, would be to take a note of the boat's name and telephone the mooring association the following day.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:25 pm
by Arghiro
Mercian wrote:As a fellow R32 owner (not that its relevant!) heres my thoughts. I would have picked it up and left it in the cockpit if it was safe and convenient to do so. Don't think I would have bothered with a note. Be convenient I mean that as I often sail single handed if I had full sail up I doubt if I would bother, it was still tied to the boat so wasn't going anywhere.


True enough but tides & floating lines have a habit of creating problems if left. I often throw an old lifebelt on a floating line over the stern when anchoring & going for a swim. It can be a life saver when the tide is stronger than you thought. But I would be unhappy at one falling in on my mooring, the tangles would be epic.

I'm always happy if a little effort (tying up a loose furler etc) can help a fellow boatie & similarly grateful if people do similar for me.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 3:48 pm
by Mercian
Don't disagree with that. Sometimes when I leave my tender on the mooring if out for the day I have returned to find the painter wrapped round the mooring riser, especially if breezy! Can be a paint to unwind!

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 6:43 pm
by mm5aho
I thought afterward that we could have tidied this up, and wish I had done so. The rope on the lifering wasn't long, so no real danger to others (unless they approach far too close), but the ring might have come completely detached.
I could have saved this, but didn't.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Oct 06, 2014 8:32 am
by BlowingOldBoots
Is there a chance that it could have been left over the side deliberately? Perhaps the owner leaves the buoy in the water as an emergency aid, ready to be grabbed if they fall in? Some folks leave knotted ropes to pull down boarding ladders for emergency use, so this could be of that ilk. I probably would not have picked it up from the yacht but would have considered it if in my dinghy.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Sun Nov 09, 2014 9:23 pm
by Old_Glow_In_The_Deep
Mercian wrote:Sometimes I leave my tender on the mooring if out for the day!


That is fine on a / your private mooring ..... but it's something else when someone leaves a dinghy tied-up to a public mooring ... which I have seen in Brodick .... if I wasn't with the Mrs (she doesn't like a fuss / confrontation) ... I think I will purposely take that one myself ... just to educate the offender .... :shake:

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:16 pm
by lady_stormrider
We've had issues with bird, erm, guano on ours when getting back to the yacht. It sometimes takes a while to scrub it off so an overnight soak sometimes helps.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:30 pm
by mm5aho
lady_stormrider wrote:We've had issues with bird, erm, guano on ours when getting back to the yacht. It sometimes takes a while to scrub it off so an overnight soak sometimes helps.


My conscience is now appeased. There's enough possibilities of reasons that someone might have deliberately left their ring afloat that I can rest from concern at not rescuing it.


Conversely, this summer, in Loch Fyne, not far from Otter Ferry, we saw something in the water, and approaching it looked like a dead body! Readying the boathook, dropping the sails and starting the engine we prepared to snare this floater.
It was an unoccupied buoyancy aid - the type that is a full vest with arms etc. But it had been there a long time I guessed, by the number of sealice infesting it. We hadn't heard of anyone being lost MOB, so assumed that the unoccupied jacket was all that'd been lost.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 1:38 pm
by Storyline
mm5aho wrote:.....
Conversely, this summer, in Loch Fyne, not far from Otter Ferry, we saw something in the water, and approaching it looked like a dead body! Readying the boathook, dropping the sails and starting the engine we prepared to snare this floater.
It was an unoccupied buoyancy aid - the type that is a full vest with arms etc. But it had been there a long time I guessed, by the number of sealice infesting it. We hadn't heard of anyone being lost MOB, so assumed that the unoccupied jacket was all that'd been lost.

Another scary encounter ;)
Not sure if I would have the bottle to fish out a dead body. Think I would have prodded it to check if there was any signs of life and then gone for the Vhf. Interested to hear what others would do if you saw what appeared to be a dead body .....

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:48 pm
by marisca
mm5aho wrote:Conversely, this summer, in Loch Fyne, not far from Otter Ferry, we saw something in the water, and approaching it looked like a dead body! Readying the boathook, dropping the sails and starting the engine we prepared to snare this floater.
It was an unoccupied buoyancy aid - the type that is a full vest with arms etc. But it had been there a long time I guessed, by the number of sealice infesting it. We hadn't heard of anyone being lost MOB, so assumed that the unoccupied jacket was all that'd been lost.


Not a good idea. Apart from the difficulty of heaving a body aboard, you are likely to mess up the forensics ....... and just think of the paperwork.

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2014 9:47 pm
by voyager35
back in the late 70s I was training in my kayak on the river in leamington spa when I came across a body floating in the water.
I got a passer by to call the police who turned up with a grappling hook and a length of rope
as the body was well away from the bank they asked me to paddle over and get the hook into the bodies jacket collar and telling me to be careful not to stick it through his neck.
it turned out to be a drunk who had been seen falling into the river the previous night
I don't think the police would be so cavalier nowadays let alone get a teenager to fish the body out

Re: Yachts on moorings - etiquette

Posted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:03 am
by MrMcP
When kayaking on some rivers in Norway in 2001 we returned to the campsite (full of fellow boaters) to find a very somber mood. One of the Eastern Europe paddlers had not returned home from a solo run, and an empty kayak, one shoe and a buoyancy aid had been found washed up on a shingle bank below the nearest gorge. The helicopter hadnt found any further sign, so the police asked a group of us to paddle the six miles to the next major wier, checking the eddies in the trees for a body. It wasnt a very pleasant experience waiting for a body to surface in the boils and swells.

Never did find him, although we gathered a paddle, the other shoe and a fairly badly damaged helmet.