What would you do?

You are returning from a pleasant day’s cruise in your single-engined displacement cruiser at a steady six knots. On board with you are your wife and two children, aged 12 and 15. The older boy is quite capable of handling the boat in open water and is a reliable and resourceful lad.

You are three miles offshore and have about ten miles to run to your home marina. Tide is not an issue but there’s bit of a chop with an underlying 2ft swell. It’s 1800 and will get dark by 2100.

You spot a small sportscruiser stationary in the water, with a person waving frantically from its cockpit. You close to 25yds and indicate you wish to communicate by radio by waving your VHF mike. The other person looks bland and just shrugs. You can see a lady sitting in the cockpit staring out to sea and apparently taking no interest or part in the proceedings.

You close to shouting range and it turns out he has broken down and wants a tow. You throw him a heaving line and he takes if forward over the guard rails and takes a couple of turns around one of the mooring cleats. What now, skip?

Send your answers to paul_ashton@ipcmedia.com .