a few questions

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by boatenthusiast, Aug 28, 2015.

  1. Grey Ghost
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    Grey Ghost Senior Member

    The number of car accidents and deaths that still happen shows the impossibility of 100% safety. We still have train accidents in 2015. And planes. And natural disasters destroy neighborhoods of houses. All the building codes and permits, and a fire still rushes through and burns them down, mud slides bury a hillside of homes, tsunamis wash houses and people away, and tornadoes blow buildings to shreds. Even if you tried to be 100% hurricane proof, tornado proof, fireproof, mudslide proof, earthquake proof, you would go bankrupt building it and you might not want to live in the bunker you built. And it still might not survive a hurricane or tornado or flood that hasn't happened yet. And that's more static and known. With the car, do you design it to drive over lava? Or fall into a glacial crack? Or be dropped from an airplane and keep occupants safe?
     
  2. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    No. You design a car for what it will encounter.

    Are you trying to say that the odds of the Titanic hitting an iceberg on the northern route in 1912 were remotely similar to the odds of a car falling into a glacial crack?
     
  3. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    After thinking it over, though, I'll concede that driving a ship into an iceberg reflects on the Captain, not the designer.
     
  4. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    I wonder what happened to those plans to tow icebergs into areas lacking fresh water, that were being proposed a few years back.
     
  5. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    Designing a ship without enough lifeboats, however, is not a Captain issue.

    Most Captains can count.
     
  6. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Most people got over the sinking of the Titanic some time ago, Jammer !
     
  7. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    Yup, but the claim that longer is safer was pretty funny, and that's how we got onto the Titanic. The claims she was correctly designed were merely amusing. She was designed legally, too code, not correctly. That distinction escapes a lot of designers in all fields.

    I wouldn't want a house built merely to code. That's the whole point of hiring a competent designer.
     
  8. Grey Ghost
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    Grey Ghost Senior Member

    Evaluating your 2015 house in 2118 would find many safety issues and deficiencies, when judged knowing everything learned in 103 years.

    I can't foresee how we will change. I'm sure some of the things we're comfortable with and don't even think about will be considered absurd and incompetent by then.

    A couple ideas would be cancer research and exposure to sunlight, exposure to electric fields, fire safety and suppression, treated wood toxicity, mold spore counting, air quality sampling and filtering, water quality testing, frequency, plumbing deposits, plastic leaching, insects and pests that make it into walls and ceilings...
     
  9. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Once again, Jammer proves his incompetence, both historically and from an engineering perspective. Wouldn't it be nice is all designers and engineers could foresee every eventuality, let alone be permitted to have the budget to attempt it. Not understanding this basic reality about all engineering shows his absurdity, typically in every post.
     
  10. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member


    Actually, as I write this, we just finished tearing all our DWV out and we've gone back to cast iron.

    I could go on and on about modern "improvements" that merely caused different problems in construction, but my grand children tell me that's a sign of getting old.

    The one area of advancement I approve of is that buildings are way more survivable during a fire than they were when I started my apprenticeship. That's a true improvement. The DWV we're replacing, not so much. It improved one aspect of the system, cost, at the price of most of the other aspects.


    A building code is a bare minimum, not a standard. You want a building built way, way above it. That minimum is set so low that if you don't meet it, we're not even going to let you move in. It's the point where you building is one breath away from being unsafe, and just barely qualifies as being fit for human habitation, without being a danger to those humans and the buildings and humans around it.

    The Titanic sailed with lifeboats for half the people she had aboard, and it would have been a third of her people if she had been full. That's a designer problem, pure and simple.

    It is mildly amusing that people here are defending that design policy. It's also mildly distressing.
     
  11. Grey Ghost
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    Grey Ghost Senior Member

    Safety is a moving target. The titanic had a number of improvements and innovations, for the time, which it turned out weren't sufficient for that chain of events. No one imagined side-swiping an iceberg with the titanic until it happened. And then many things went wrong.

    The number of lifeboats I thought about. The idea of the time must have been the ship would stay afloat long enough to ferry passengers to a rescue ship in most reasonable situations. A calculated risk that turned bad in this situation. I wonder how it compares to the safety cushions and life rafts aboard commercial airlines to maintain profitability and luggage capacity passengers want?

    Currently everyone drives a car and there are over 30,000 deaths every year in the US from auto accidents. Every time you get behind the wheel you accept a level of safety to enjoy your life. We still sell alcohol even though it kills people. We still even sell cigarettes. Someday it will be seen as incomprehensible.

    Similarly take fire survivablity. There has been many improvements. Interconnected alarms. Alarms which call the fire department. Some have sprinkler systems. Better materials. Fire breaks. And still people die every year in house fires. Has every house you've owned had an ample size fire extinguisher in every room? Why not? An automatic house-wide fire suppression system? How about even a fire alarm in every room? Has every room had two means of egress, or only bedrooms? Do you still have any materials in your house which could emit toxic fumes in a fire? I'm sure you do still.

    We have a certain comfort level with a degree of safety we think is sufficient at any time in history and we accept it. In the future our current level of safety will no doubt be seen as distressing too.
     
  12. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    More Jammer uninformed musings? The designer supplied more than ample locations for davits, but they met regulations and after thousands of crossings (literally) without an incident, the still of complacency sets in, not to mention the very thing you can't understand, the inability to engineer for every contingency. It happens, just ask the 14 NASA astronauts that aren't around any more.
     
  13. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    Actually, it is the captain that decides whether a ship is safe or not. He, or she, can refuse to sail.
     
  14. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    The skipper can refuse to sail, but he can't access the thousands of design elements on a ship, just what he feels is its seaworthiness, which is usually crew and equipment related, not fundamental design or engineering. In fact, if an incident occurs and the design or engineering comes to question, it's the owners and engineers that bear the recourse of an investigation, not the captain.
     

  15. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    I think you all overlook something important: risk. there is NOTHING you can do without risk, eating food, drinking water, breathing air...let alone sailing, driving a car, flying on an airplane, is without risk.

    Everything we do in almost every activity usually had some kind of risk assement to set acceptable risk standards in terms of food or automobile safety. sometimes it is based on history, sometimes by technical analysis, sometimes by tradition (particularly in sports).

    It would be impossible to live without any risk, you could not afford it, aircraft with zero risk would never get off the ground, automobiles would be too heavy, costly and very uncomfortable. And there are human factors as well: one study found that young drivers have better reflexes, and lighter more responsive cars tend to be safer for them than the heavier cars their parents often think are desirable for their new drivers. the Camry is one of the safest cars on the road, in terms of deaths per mile, but it certainly is not the largerst or heaviest (though generally larger heavier cars are safety in an accident, but they also can contribute to accidents becasuse of their size and weight).

    You can not have absolute food safety, or water safety, though we have made unsafe food so rare, it is newsworthy when it happens. but there are too many that have to make up things to worry about in their food (like GMO foods) without any evidence. Not that I do not appreciate the long term unknowns with GMO foods, there is no hard evidence they are a hazzard to health. Funny thing is these same people who are worried about GMO food, may not wear their seat belts, or wear a helment on their bike rides, which are 100,000 times more likely to kill you than anything in your food.

    We do learn new things, and as pointed out, building codes will continue to change in the future as we discovered safer ways to make buildings, just as they have changed in the past. same goes for tires and brakes, food supply, aircraft regulations, and so fourth.

    I have also noticed another factor, human factors; what we as a socitiy consider an acceptable level of safety. when I was young it was common to see new mothers driving cars with their newborns on their laps, cars did not even have seat belts, and the infant cars seat had not even been invented yet. People would call the police if they saw that now. our idea of what is acceptable in terms of safety have changed a lot.

    I read somewhere that up to one third of clipper ships were lost at sea. Though it seems they were never lacking to find new crew members. Who would take a job today knowing you have a 33 percent chance of dying with each voyage? I guess they considered it worth the risk to earn a good living.
     
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