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August tip

Getting enough sleep

You may remember a TV coverage of Bill Turnbull a presenter who was taking part in a sleep deprivation exercise.


He was restricted to 3 hours sleep a day, this 3 hours to be spread out in intervals of no more than 30 minutes at a time.

The obvious outcome was that his abilities were degraded to the extent where the researchers estimate that he could only perform at half his normal level of effectiveness.

As a safety measure he was not even allowed to drive a car during the experiment.

This is exactly what many inexperienced skippers do when they first start to make longer passages. Because they are not confident to leave the vessel in the control of the crew they remain awake during the whole passage.

The result is that they become exhausted and incapable of making safe decisions. This situation is exacerbated if some incident or change causes the passage to take much longer than expected.

Just when clear thinking and observation are required the skipper is at their least effective.

This is the reason the skipper should always be looking for the opportunity to rest and to hand over responsibility to the crew. As part of the passage plan the skipper should have identified when it will be safe to rest, the remainder of the crew need to work around these times.

Ideal times to rest are:

  • When in open water.
  • Clear of shipping.
  • When no weather changes are expected.

Even during these times the skipper will leave a detailed list of when they expect to be called by the duty watch.

Source: http://www.sailtrain.co.uk/skippers_tips 



Tip for July 2015


When refuelling it can be very difficult to avoid getting drips or froth from the diesel on the deck.

Apart from the environmental considerations, this diesel can make the deck slippery, be difficult to remove and will stain a wooden deck.

A simple solution is to spread water or washing up liquid around the filler cap. Any spilt diesel will then float on the surface and can be easily scrubbed off.

Spread the water on the deck before removing the fuel filler cap!


Just a reminder that at Yachtport SA you can also stop for some diesel and to refuel your crew as well. Moore at our fueling jetty and come and have a nice meal before you sail away into the sunset again.




c_130_130_16777215_00___images_logo_6.pngI am sure we all know what SAMSA stands for and how they can assist us in all the safety aspects. A little extract from their site: 

The South African Maritime SafetyAuthority (SAMSA) was established on the 1st April 1998 under the SAMSA Act 5 of 1998. SAMSA’s mandate is;

  • To ensure safety of life and property at sea;
  • To prevent and combat pollution from ships in the marine environment; and
  • To promote the Republic’s maritime interests.

SAMSA has also been charged with the responsibility of executing the following:

  • Administration of the Merchant shipping (National Small Vessel Safety) Regulation, 2007, as amended (the Regulations). The Regulations extends SAMSA’s Core mandate to include inland waterways (only waterways accessible to the public) within the Republic. That is to ensure boating safety on our waters.
  • Implementing and executing the Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) of vessels along the South African coastline. The Long-Range vessels monitoring system assist in securing South Africa’s coastal waters in the midst of the rising lawlessness at sea, with particular reference to the worrying scourge of pirate attacks along the east coast of Africa.
If you need any help with COF's or any information, feel free to contact us and we will either assist you directly or put you in touch with the best person for the required task.


What a beauty. She came in for a high-pressure clean and anti-fouling. Also got some fresh new decorations done on the outside.


The Caribbean - some information

The Windward Islands are at the southern end of the Caribbean island chain. For experienced sailors, it is thrilling to sail among the four main islands: Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Grenada.

They are far enough apart to allow for open ocean sailing and they lie across the easterly trade winds, making passages north or south easy. With constant 10- to 25-knot winds, the sailing is among the best in the world. Anchoring nightly in peaceful and protected anchorages gives sailors freedom to explore and soak up British and French island culture.

In the Caribbean, the dry season is from February to June, delivering only an occasional rain shower. From July to January, the wet season brings frequent showers with lots of sunshine and the occasional rainy day. Expect 78 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit with balmy winds year round. Squalls produce intense rains and sometimes winds in excess of 40 knots. The winter months, November to March, produce strong Christmas winds. During this time, storms from the north produce swells and may create an unsafe anchorage, so be prepared to move to a safer location. In June, the winds diminish and clock to the southeast at 10 to 15 knots.

Bareboat Versus Charter
A sailboat you rent yourself is called a bareboat, meaning it is bare of captain, crew, cook and food. To be able to bareboat, the skipper must be a skilled sailor with navigation experience and preferably a USCG license. Bareboating allows complete independence. A captained charter includes a captain, cook, food and everything needed for the entire trip. Caribbean charters are usually for a minimum of one week; rates are more expensive from December to mid-April. For lower rates, charter off-season but avoid the hurricane season, which can potentially disrupt a well-planned vacation. The hurricane months are from June through November and generally affect areas north of Martinique.

Catamaran Versus Monohull
You can choose between a multihull (catamaran) and a monohull. Catamarans are spacious and provide stability, privacy, comfort and a large cockpit. The charters can be extremely luxurious, with all of the amenities of a hotel. In the Caribbean, cruisers spend the majority of their time lounging, eating or reading in the boat's cockpit, making the catamaran ideal for a relaxing experience. Monohulls are for people who truly enjoy the sport of sailing. They heel over at 30 to 35 degrees, making them less comfortable and wetter, but they offer sailing performance that far exceeds that of the catamarans.

For more information visit http://www.huffingtonpost.com/susan-fogwell/planning-a-caribbean-sailing-trip_b_1251325.html


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