Three failures can kill you

We were once again in Dunmore East at anchor and Beverley talked about a book called the hitch hikers guide to the galaxy, and on the front of the book are the words

"Don't panic"

For sailors like us, these words are quite useful, because you should not panic. If you panic then all sorts of things go wrong for you, but if you can keep calm then soon you can master the situation and get on with what ever it is that you need to do. Well inside the book is another phrase which is quite useful to sailors and that is

"Expect, the unexpected"

This phrase is glib and a contradiction in terms, but it describes what is happening at the moment in that we had expected that we would be able to get fuel at Malahide, but they had moved the fuel dock because of a storm, so we had only filled up one jerry can expecting to get fuel further South, then at Greystones there was no fuel dock and at Kilmore key, on our first visit, we decided not to fill up because the fuel was very expensive, then when we visited on the second occasion and we had no choice, the fuel pump had a problem, so really we should of expected the unexpected and regardless of how expensive it was, we should of fuelled up, but we failed to "Expect, the unexpected", which is why we think that this is sage advice.

So, we looked at our options, one of which was to contact our subscriber network and see if anybody lived in the local area, There was one guy and he had helped us before, but he was busy and he lived quite a distant out from Dunmore East and he had a lot to do, but if we were really stuck, he would help us. It was nice to know that we had a back up, but we were determined that we could do it ourselves, so we found a petrol station that was near the local bus route and that is what we did.

So if you are in the same situation that we were then here are a few tips.

  • There are no bus stops signs so you need to find there approximate location on the Google maps, or equivalent
  • The names of the bus stops are of very little help as the bus stop for the Strand Inn, is about ¼ mile away, its just the nearest bus stop to the Strand Inn.
  • We carried the diesel can in a big blue bag with a blanket over, so that the diesel can was in disguise.

Fixing our sail bag at anchor

The next day, while we were at anchor, there was very little wind, but it was sunny which meant that there was lots of electrons flowing into the boat, so that I could get my sewing machine out. Once the machine was out, Beverley and I removed the sail just so that we could remove the sail bag. I used some rip stock nylon to repair the sail bag and although it was not the greatest repair in the world it was good enough. To do the repair, I used our inverter and it preformed really well. When I got the inverter, I made sure it had the capacity to run our sewing machine and today was the day that I put it to the test. I had to run the inverter on always on rather than ECO, but other than that, it was fine. Once I did the hand sewing we put the sail back on. For our reefing lines we are now doing running bowlines which have really helped because they are easy to do, and easy to undo as well, so thank-you whoever suggested that.

On the sail I had to do a little bit of hand sewing, and as I did that I talked about three failures.

Three failures

When Beverley flew, she used to read the accident reports for flying and they were fairly consistent

  • One failure or system on an aircraft failing and you were usually fine
  • Two systems failing and things are getting a little bit more complicated, but the chance of survival is really high
  • Three failures and the chances of survival really start to drop significantly

So the reason, we got fuel was now we knew that we could get to our next destination with no problems, Before, we would probably be alright, but that is a dangerous word when you are out sailing, we prefer the word know, so we now knew that we would be alright. We also didn't want a failure before we even started. If you have one failure before you go out, then it doesn't take much and you will soon be in the three failure situation.

Raising money for the RNLI

The RNLI turned 200 years old on 4th March 2024. So as sailors and people who promote the joy of sailing, we thought that we would like to raise just £200. What we hope is that other people take up the shout and raise their own £200. In the last 200 years the RNLI have saved over 144,000 lives and yet they are funded entirely by people like you. They are not government funded.

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