Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Getting Away With Murder

Palm Beach, FL
26 45.45 N 080 02.61 W

Today we motored down the ICW from Peck Lake to Palm Beach.  We passed through a region densely populated by power boats, an we encountered unusually many boats that passed us at high speed making big wakes and refusing to slow down.  That reminds me of our friend Chuck (not his real name).   Chuck is a genial guy, lightly built and I guess 65-75 years old.  Like me, Chuck is a cruiser.  Unlike me, Chuck cruises single handed on his sailboat.

This year, while heading south on The Chesapeake Bay, Chuck was overtaken by a power boat going very fast.   He never got a good look at the boat.  Chuck says that all he saw was a wall of water from the boat's wake heading towards him.  The shock from that wake knocked Chuck out of his seat.  He fell in the cockpit and hit so hard it knocked him out.   When he awoke, Chuck was glad his boat was on autopilot because he couldn't get up. He was hurt so badly that it took him 30 minutes to climb back into his seat.

Now, months later, Chuck's health hasn't recovered.  He feels weak and sick all the time.  I fear that he has internal injuries that could be serious or even fatal.   I really hope he gets better, but it would be improper for me to pry into why Chuck doesn't seek medical help.  

What about that other boat?  Isn't there a way to track down and prosecute that skipper who could have committed murder?  Sadly, no; not to my knowledge.  Without an eye witness report, there is no way to identify that skipper.

Like many cruisers, I'm libertarian in spirit.  I don't want big brother watching everything I do.  However, I wish there was a way for government to track down and arrest criminals like that power boat skipper.   I don't know what technology might enable that, but if it did exist, I would support mandating its use.  Boaters need to be free, but they don't need to be free to commit murder.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like you friend might have Crystals. They're little crystals in the ears that break off, usually from a head trauma, and roll around in the ear canal. Real easy to fix in a Doctors office. They just roll the head around and they go back where they belong.

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