Weekly Press Review – 5 February 2016

Two separate yachting tragedies have seen the safety of working sailors and tourists alike being called into question this week.  The disappearance of three sailors who went missing during a routine delivery of a luxury yacht (a year ago), as well as the death of two Irish tourists whose yacht ran aground near Melkbos have both made headlines this week.

Families of the missing sailors have called for an inquest after an upturned catamaran was sighted, but attempts to tow it into harbour failed and the hull was eventually lost at sea near Port Elizabeth.  The families want to establish fairer practices and enforced compliance with the legislation with the aim of ensuring increased safety for sailors.

In the grounding incident the death of two Irish tourists has led to an investigation into how this yacht ran aground and whether it had already capsized by the time it ran aground.

SAMSA has had surveyors on the scene and the cause of the accident is under investigation.

The continued decimation of South Africa’s abalone has also made headlines this week.  According to the press we are losing the war on abalone poaching.  It is estimated that in 2014 a massive 7 million were poached at a cost of R1 billion.

These figures were presented at the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) Abalone Indaba held in Cape Town this week.

DAFF chief director Ceba Mtoba said, “It is time to shift gears.  Poaching has become the norm.”

Fisheries Management deputy director-general Siphokazi Ndudane said that the Marine Living Resources Act would be reviewed.

“The act is old.  It has no mention of poaching. Poaching has been overlapping under our watch over the years because of its ineffectiveness.  The act is no longer applicable.

“This indaba will form part of our paperwork to be presented to the president when amending the act,” said Ndudane.


A naval affair!

It’s not often, as an editor of a B2B magazine aimed at the maritime industry, that you receive a press release that really knocks you sideways. Let’s face it I am used to getting announcements relating to appointments, product launches, acquisitions and mergers, but today I literally did a double-take at a press release marketing the services of a discrete website offering to matchmake married individuals.

To their credit they had done some research and pitched the content directly at the maritime industry so it was not one of those spam emails that clog your junk box offering little pills with big benefits.

According to the press release married men need to be alert to the fact that their wives may be all too keen to visit the South African Navy festival this weekend in Simon’s Town because sailors apparently top the list of uniform-wearing hotties. Yes – “32 percent of women surveyed said that a sailor boy (sic) tops their sexual fantasy list”.

The press release goes on to inform that “Simon’s Town is full of sailors ready to conduct unofficial naval business especially after long bouts at sea”.

Interestingly the white uniforms of sailors put them in first place amongst uniformed men that women want to have an adulterous affair with. The top five places include

  • Sailors – 32 percent 
  • Commercial pilots – 26 percent
  • Airforce pilots – 19 percent
  • Firefighters – 15 percent
  • Police – 8 percent

As a magazine that derives its income solely from advertising revenue and necessarily passes on all such press releases to our advertising sales department for follow-up, my instinct in this case, however, was to manually assign it to the junkmail folder.  And so, despite the assurance from the lady who runs the website that female infidelity is on the rise I think there are probably other publications more suited to carry this message.

So don’t go eagerly paging through the next issue of the magazine hoping to find more details. But do remember to pop down to Simon’s Town for the popular annual Navy Festival.