Readers of Sea Kayaker Magazine may remember my Letter to the Editor that appeared in the October 2011 issue, in response to the Storm Islands Rescue safety article in the preceding August issue. In that Letter, I showed that news of kayakers in trouble on the water was given inordinate publicity, as shown by the sheer number of "results" that show up when you enter "Kayaker Rescued" vs. "Boater Rescued" into the leading internet search engine. Back in that October 2011 Letter, I quoted figures of 81,900 for Kayaker (and Kayakers) Rescued, as opposed to 124,800 for Boater (and Boaters) Rescued. Since then, the figures, and especially the proportions, have changed enormously.
Take a look.....
Kayaker Rescued, now, today: 9,330,000
Boater Rescued, now, today: 2,580,000
I don't know what this change represents--is it something to do with new procedures having to do with the search engine?
Is it something to do with the explosion of recreational and fishing kayakers out there? Does it have something to do with ordinary standards of seamanship failing to be inculcated in the minds of open-water paddlers (the subject of my original Letter)? All of the above? Inquiring minds want to know. Any thoughts?