The Tres Martin Performance Boat School is at full throttle, since 2004 Tres and I have provided our instructional designed, “Hands on” training programs to a few thousand participants and we are now in the middle of our busiest year ever.   We have grown these instructional designed curriculums to a much broader market covering all boat types.  The Center Console Performance Course now accounts for about one third of our annual course load and we are now presenting our yacht training program.  This program enables new yacht owners the ability to operate without a professional crew with much greater confidence and exceeds the insurance requirements which only require a dictated number of hours of operation by a U. S. Coast Guard licensed master but do not require prescriptive or defined human performance criteria.  In April of this year the course was presented to two yacht owners in California, a 65 Princess in San Diego and another new F55 Princess in San Francisco.  These new programs provide in depth coverage of everything onboard and beyond safety provide the operational skills which allow these new owners to maximize the enjoyment of the boats with much greater confidence as a result of their ability to perform the skills sets required to navigate the boats from quick day trips to extended voyages.

We are also now set to grow our commercial operations beyond the current U.S. Navy program to local, state, and Federal Law Enforcement as well as small combatant craft in other countries.

The center console craze; In October of 2016 I was again asked to speak at the Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club, this is the annual mass gathering of marine insurance executives from around the world which coincides with the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show.  The theme for this 27th session was ” What was old is new again” and this was perfect for the discussion around center consoles and multi outboard powered watercraft.   In the late 1980’s large new outboards brought a surge in new large center consoles; the Donzi F33, Scarab Sports, Cigarette 33 Open, and many more.  While center consoles have always been a strong market as non-fishing sport boats in Florida, Caribbean, and The Bahamas this new push has really put the pendulum hard over.   With today’s new higher horsepower outboards, the ability to load 10 or more souls aboard and run in the 80’s is easily attainable, this now has the senior level executives in the insurance industry paying attention because they have seen in the dramatic increase in losses and while not highly publicized these losses are happening.  The BLUF (bottom line upfront) is the multiple of lives onboard along with higher speeds increase the risk exposure and the executives responsible to establish underwriting rules are looking for ways to mitigate these risks and engineered experiential training has proven to be a very good option.

Technology and innovation rule our world and I lean way forward to look for any new tech to make boating safer.  But no matter what tech brings, absolutely nothing is more complex than the human in charge and advancements in how we engineer and develop the man to machine interface must be improved.  Charles Darwin said “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.”  In my world, this is the science of Human Performance and as an instructional designer our ability to improve the operational competencies, situational awareness, and proper action in the human operator onboard is true innovation in boating safety. Don’t forget the most remarkable and advanced ship in the world with sophisticated propulsion control and navigation systems can make a “Crazy Ivan Turn” hit a rock near an island and sink, until singularity is fully achieved the human is always responsible.

Stay tuned for more news from the Performance Boat School as we continue to expand our courses.