Abby Sunderland, the 16 year-old trying to sail around the world, is alive and well.
But veteran Australian sailor Ian Kiernan echoed the concerns of others that she would be sailing through the Indian Ocean when weather conditions would be at their most treacherous.
“I don’t know what she’s doing in the Southern Ocean as a 16-year-old in the middle of winter,” said Mr Kiernan, who himself has sailed solo around the world. “It’s just foolhardy”.
There’s a big difference between 16 and 7, but one common factor that this event shares with the death of Jessica Dubroff in Cheyenne, Wyoming is hubris about the weather. It’s one thing to let a kid sail around the world or fly across country. It’s quite another to let them sail during storm season, or force a takeoff as a thunderstorm is developing. If the adults in these kids’ lives can’t keep them from doing a risky thing, at least they should be able to help manage the risks and be a counterbalance against go fever.