I feel that this story and the other regarding, the young lad should serve as a warning to all.
We live in a world where wealth and technology are leading a great many people to think that there are no limits to our horizons and dreams. We go to a boat show where a slick salesman will tell you that his 30 foot fibreglass toy will take you any where in the world. You do not have to worry about navigation as this $50 GPS is accurate to 6 inches and this $200 radio will tell you the weather anywhere on the planet and if you do get int trouble you only have to holler on this $50 radio and someone will drop out of the sky to pick you up and whisk you off to a 5 star hotel while the insurance company will pick up the tab.
I train new airline pilots and I see a large number of would be's that think they have a god given right to fly around in a large jet aircraft, when in reality they have no chance. The training industry, which is money driven keeps telling them that if they spend $100K they will be able to do it. Its the same with the boating industry.
The world is not fair nor is everyone equal. Some people are able to set off in small boats and deal whith whatever is thrown at them, however the majority are not.
I really should have no need to say this on this forum, but I think we should be very carefull when encouraging others to chase the dream.
As most of you already know it takes a wealth of knowledge and experience to pilot a small boat aroud the worlds oceans. You cannot learn to be a navigator just by doing a two week course, nor can you learn the 1001 things you need to know about sailing from an RYA 3 day course.
I think that companies who insure small boats for long distance cruising are crazy (just like NINJA mortgages) and I also think that maybe the emergency services should start charging the full cost of rescues to the rescued.
If people keep demanding rescue in ever increasing numbers then governments (and rightly so) will start to demand that our small boats are fully seaworthy in line with commercial shipping (an imposibility) and that we post a bond before we our allowed offshore in terratorial waters.