NEWS

Sunday sailors show poor skills

Greece’s hot weather and blue skies have enticed a number of unprepared amateur boaters out to sea this summer who have been sending out a growing number of calls for help, according to a port authority source. Distress signals from small pleasure boats take up 80 percent of rescue efforts, the source said, with inflatable dinghy owners being among the main culprits. Calls for assistance often arise due to boatmen underestimating their fuel requirements, being unable to determine their location or falling victim to extreme weather conditions. «The amount of money we spend on offering assistance to people who have no idea about sailing is large. Some can’t even guess how much fuel they need while others don’t even look up weather forecasts,» the source said. As a result, the rescue operation center every weekend is flooded with distress calls, he added while blaming legal loopholes for allowing these people to be in charge of seagoing vessels despite lacking the proper knowledge.