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Would you go down with the ship?

Old 01-10-2019, 12:58 PM
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Default Would you go down with the ship?

Reading about the recent tragedy in Oregon prompted me to read about other maritime disasters where the Captains lost their lives, often while helping save the lives of their shipmates as best they could (Captain Edward J Smith, Captain Michael Davidson, Medal of Honor recipient John Philip Cromwell, and many others). Conversely history does not look favorably on Captains who abandon their doomed vessels with souls on board. They often live the rest of their lives being branded a Coward, and in some cases, like the Costa Concordia disaster, they do real time in prison for their decision.

I guess we'd all like to think of ourselves as brave, and it is easy to proclaim our bravely as we sit in our comfortable dry chairs in front of the warm glow of our computer screens. I admit I'm an adrenaline junkie but I get a certain excitement out of thinking about what I would do if I were faced with the prospect of death by drowning to selflessly save life, or would I choose the cowardly way out and get myself to safety before it was too late?

What do you think you would do? Have you ever been in a similar situation?
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:03 PM
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You'll never know until you know. I hope I never find out.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:03 PM
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Would do my best to get everyone off the boat, but I wont be going down with the ship either. Call me a coward but I will still be alive.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:03 PM
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If you have never been in that situation. And by that I mean putting it on the line to save another soul....especially when you don't know them, it's going to be really hard to say with any confidence what you would do.

I was a firefighter for some time growing up, and early into my professional life. I really enjoyed interior attack, but I was much younger then, and consequences didn't mean as much. I never hesitated for even a moment if I trusted the commanding officer on the scene, and he sent me in. Same with high angle rescue, water rescue, etc... I have seen the toughest guys in the world decide they wanted to be pump operators after all after a nasty one.

My answer is I would likely end up going down with the ship, but only if others were not able to get off. I wouldn't go down just to go down, but if I had a realistic chance of saving others, that's what I would do.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:05 PM
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I don't think you should go down with a ship just to go down with it. If there are people on the ship unable to be helped, I don't think it is selfish to abandon if you've done everything you can. Why should 2 lives suffer when 1 could have been saved? All circumstances are different, but it is also a responsibility of the Captain to ensure the safety and survival of passengers.

In this case, I don't think there was any saving anyone.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by kawakx125 View Post
I don't think you should go down with a ship just to go down with it. If there are people on the ship unable to be helped, I don't think it is selfish to abandon if you've done everything you can. Why should 2 lives suffer when 1 could have been saved? All circumstances are different, but it is also a responsibility of the Captain to ensure the safety and survival of passengers.

In this case, I don't think there was any saving anyone.
Agreed, there apparently wasn't a rescue chance with this, unfortunately. And although the situation was doomed, I have to admit that I look more favorably on the Captain knowing he was amongst the dead than I would if say the headline said that he was the lone survivor. I suspect most people reading that headline would feel the same.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:21 PM
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No way I'm going down with the ship at face value but the capt even on a private boat has a responsibility to see that the passengers get out safely. I'm gonna do all I can to get the crew out. Rarely is anyone down below when we run in dangerous weather so hopefully that simplifies my job if we crash and burn some day.
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Old 01-10-2019, 02:06 PM
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It's my duty to get everyone off the boat, they come first, I come last (in a manner of speaking) of course if I'm dead I can't help anyone. But as a general rule, yes I stay onboard until everyone else is off.
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Old 01-10-2019, 02:37 PM
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Not quite the same but my wife and I were in the water diving conch and putting them in a blow up float when a shark appeared (8 ft) my immediate reaction was to push her into the blow up and try to swin her to shore about 500 ft away, never saw the shark again but I admit I was not happy being in the water, but her safety was the immediate first thought which only took a nano second.
found a body floating which I guess explains the sharks presence.
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Old 01-10-2019, 03:12 PM
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I hope I would have the fortitude to do everything I could to save lives even if I endangered myself. I've pulled people from burning cars on two seperate occasions so I have some past experience that leads me to believe I would. I say that because, at the time, it didn't even cross my mind that I was putting myself at risk. However, you never know until it happens so I won't say I definitely would.
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Old 01-10-2019, 04:25 PM
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I'm a Vietnam vet.....been really scared there. When it comes time, everyone is different and you'll only know then. Most of us can live up to what we need to do in an emergency but some just aren't built that way. I would never call anyone a coward though.
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Old 01-10-2019, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by cmerc View Post
Not quite the same but my wife and I were in the water diving conch and putting them in a blow up float when a shark appeared (8 ft) my immediate reaction was to push her into the blow up and try to swin her to shore about 500 ft away, never saw the shark again but I admit I was not happy being in the water, but her safety was the immediate first thought which only took a nano second.
found a body floating which I guess explains the sharks presence.
Maybe not exactly the same but not that much different. You were willing to push her to safety even if it meant making yourself vulnerable to harm. Women and children first comes to mind.
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Old 01-10-2019, 05:26 PM
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Boats sink in seconds. If your in the pilot house when it goes under odds are your not getting out. If someone else is in there I’m doing what I can to help them. Hopefully we both make it. And yes I’ve been in that situation before.
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Old 01-10-2019, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by clockwork View Post
No way I'm going down with the ship at face value but the capt even on a private boat has a responsibility to see that the passengers get out safely. I'm gonna do all I can to get the crew out. Rarely is anyone down below when we run in dangerous weather so hopefully that simplifies my job if we crash and burn some day.
Very good point..that’s why I always have my salon doors locked open and no one is allowed to wear life jackets inside
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:07 PM
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My character by all means wood force me to get everyone safely off the boat first. Now, if there's somebody who is freaking out and locked themselves in a room or holding onto a railing and won't let go , after I put in some effort to help them and they refuse, they're on their own.
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Old 01-10-2019, 07:28 PM
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My ship wont sink...the gunnels are fully foamed and I don't know what it would take to sink it. I carry everything but a lifeboat aboard, so safety of my crew and myself is paramount..

On the other hand, I could never imagine a scenario where I would not want everyone to survive a catastrophe...and I cant imagine anyone else here that would tell you they would save themselves first...

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Old 01-10-2019, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by whorrall View Post
Maybe not exactly the same but not that much different. You were willing to push her to safety even if it meant making yourself vulnerable to harm. Women and children first comes to mind.
one of my fears in life is to be in a situation like the people on Flight 94 in 2001,and be too scared / cowardly to do what they did. I hope I never have to find out, but its always in my mind when I fly.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by clear View Post
Would do my best to get everyone off the boat, but I wont be going down with the ship either. Call me a coward but I will still be alive.

im not a licensed captain, so take this with a grain of salt. If I were, I feel the same as you. ANYTHING to get them off, anything, but my intention is to not go down either. That said, guys like you probably do go down and everyone else lives. It's just how things happen in those situations. Don't think for a minute that every fireman in the wortrade center was "Brave and not afraid " they were shitting their pants I assure you, been there done that just not there that day. Coward no. Survival yes, but when trying to survive and preserve human life, the worst and inevitable happens.. your answer is as perfect as can be in a hypothetical situation.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by bobofthenorth View Post
You'll never know until you know. I hope I never find out.
Well said.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:25 PM
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Umm no..https://tenor.com/view/pirates-of-th...ow-gif-4655056
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