Heads! Duck! Boom! Gybing!

Anyone who has been on a sailing yacht, has heard one of the above calls. Let me tell you something, booms do not give way. They are not soft, they have no padding, they do not flex and they usually go very, very fast whilst gybing and carry loads of energy. They are made of aluminium, wood or carbon fibre, so they are much, much stronger than your head.

If you are a novice sailor on a yacht and hear one of those calls duck, run, get out of the way, hit the deck, anything. Don’t just stand there.

Today, I read this article on ybw.com. Yup, the guy is dead. Only 30 years old. It happened yesterday. Sailing is a sport/hobby we love and enjoy but it can be dangerous, too. If the health and safety executive (or whatever he is called this week) had been on-board a yacht he would had ban them.

I have been hit by the boom a couple of times. Once on a J-109 (soft hit, but I felt it) and once on a Laser (that really shook my brain in my skull and I had a stitch next to my eyebrow).

So, enjoy the water and stay safe.