Last week's Americas Cup sailing tragedy, where a crew member died while training on one of the super-fast 72 ft catamarans, has brought up an interesting overlap between my work in yacht racing, and my degree studies on crime v. harm: I'm thinking about the self-regulation of high-level (and high finance) sports, and internal investigations into 'accidents', and how this could be seen as corporate crime/harm.
It's also worrying how (although we might all deny it) things like this can become accepted as a risk of the sport that the competitors knowingly sign up for, I have no doubt that disclaimers abound in the contracts.
Would you go and work in an 'ordinary' job for an amazing company doing something you loved, but knowing that one day you might not come home from work? Do workers in factories have different rights to those enjoying themselves? What is the difference between company responsibilities in the workplace, and professional sailing where the sailors are effectively employees?
The AC investigation has to be completed in time for the racing start at the beginning of July; well, they wouldn't want to upset the TV schedules. So, don't worry everyone, the show will go on! After all, it's all about the money.....
And, as in car racing, some of the Americas Cup spectators will be watching in the hope that there will be a big crash; and that is a whole different question about human nature.