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SUNDAY MORNING

Rant: Manners overboard

Robby Nimmo

 

I was always taught not to make waves - and I don't mean only in the metaphorical sense, but out on the water, too.

A lot of "new money" on the waterways of Hong Kong means a lot of people who've had their boat licence for about three seconds acting as if they're in a scene from a National Lampoon vacation. (Throwing the anchor overboard without tying it on has been known to happen.)

Some of the worst habits of nouveau boaties include speeding and sailing too close to other vessels, thereby creating waves, havoc and near-death experiences.

I watched last Sunday as two fishermen in a small dinghy had to frantically bail themselves out while several pleasure cruisers more than 60 feet long hurtled past at well over the regulation number of knots. The day-trippers on board seemed to think "pleasure boating" means having your own pleasure at the expense of everyone else's.

Anyone who's been out on a junk knows the sensation of being hit by unexpected "wash". You hold on for dear life as the boat rocks back and forth, up and down, and flying objects come hurtling across the deck like Pamplona bulls.

Clearly, many of those at the helm in this city's waters should be wearing a dunce's cap rather than a captain's hat. Money may be able to buy you a deluxe monster yacht but it seems it can't furnish you with seamanship, consideration or common sense.

 

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Rant: Manners overboard

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