This is an important question for those who go on the water with only two people aboard. No matter the size of the boat or where you travel, what would you do if the other person becomes incapacitated by injury or illness? What if the other person aboard is a child or unable to take charge if something happens to you? If you become a crew of one, you also will have to deal with the illness or injury to the other person – a complicating factor, adding to the stress of the situation. Both people on a two-person boat should be able to operate the boat and get it home or to a safe place if something happens. It’s a good idea to practice with one person operating the boat while the other stands by, and for both people to take charge regularly to keep their skills up. For larger boats you can find on-the-water instruction specifically designed to teach skills for getting home safely, if you’re not the primary boat operator. The more you both know about operating and navigating the boat, the happier and safer a two-person crew will be.
Priscilla Travis spends more than 110 days each year on the water, takes photos, and writes about nautical topics.