Whilst preparing our yacht for long distance sailing, our biggest fear was what would we do in the event of rudder loss. We had read articles and reports about yachts having to be abandoned after losing a rudder because jury-rigged steering was not up to the job.
Our Oceansteer emergency steering devise has given us the confidence to take on the challenge of sailing off-shore by providing us with a sensible and tested method of getting our yacht to safety.
The Oceansteer neatly fits into our starboardside lazerette locker and you would not know that it was there. It lies flat and takes up hardly any room at all.
Our 43' yacht has been coded to meet the MCA commercial yacht code-of-practice Category 2. That means that we can sell berths on cross-channel trips and offshore races such as the Fastnet. We are currently applying for the unrestricted 0 category and Oceansteer will help towards this. We will then be able to take paying crew on the RORC Transatlantic Race which starts next November.
RORC insist that crew demonstrate the use of an effective emergency steering system before being signed off to take part. Oceansteer enable us to do this with confidence.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) insisted that we had an emergency steering system such as an emergency tiller or a steering oar. Our boat came with an emergency tiller when new as we have wheel steering, but an emergency tiller would not help at all if the rudder broke! A steering oar is all very well but where do you keep it? It would have to be very long plus you would have to hold onto it for hour after hour. We could lash our dining table or a door to the spinnaker pole but this would probably fall apart, the spinnaker pole would not be long enough and how on earth would we test it without destroying something?
Our Oceansteer knocks the dilemma of emergency steering on the head and gives us the peace of mind to take on long distance passages. Plus our insurance company loves the idea.
We are very pleased to have an Oceansteer.
Nordship 43DS 'Top Secret'