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Old 02-26-2015, 10:21 PM   #21
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Very puzzling deal. While I've never been in a situation like that I can appreciate the fear that would take over just about everything. Couple that will being ill and the urge to get off the boat no matter what would be overwhelming. Particularly as there were just two of them on board and they didn't have the benefit of having someone along who was more able to cope with a situation like this. I probably would have just wanted to go home, too.

What I find particularly puzzling about all this is the video itself. Why publicize something that clearly illustrates one's incompetence. The line on the radio--- "The engine's shot"--- is rather telling. The engine stopped, okay. But it's not shot. They obvioulsy didn't have the knowledge to get it restarted-- I would not be surprised if what it needed was to have it bled after a slug of air stopped it. I can understand the reluctance to get down in the engine room or space and bleed a fuel system and engine with the boat heaving around like that.

But to my way of thinking, it's the ability to do that that sets the competent skippers apart from the herd.

I'm not at all familiar with that part of the world so don't know what the water conditions are like or what dangers lie under the water in that area. But from the footage, the sea conditions looked a lot like what it looks like in Hawaii a fair amount of the time. Not pleasant but certainly boatable if you're up to it and have a boat that's suited for it. Which the Island Packet seemed to be from the IR footage taken during the rescue.

The tone of the video seems to be that these two guys felt like they cheated death and pulled off a miraculous survival in the face of overwhelming obstacles. We're heroes, the video seems to be saying.

They may be to people who know nothing about boats and boating. But they clearly had no clue as to the nature of their capabiitles and thus exceeded their limitations by a huge amount.

I wonder if they know this?
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Old 02-26-2015, 10:51 PM   #22
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Anytime the forecast includes "storm" and "North Carolina", stay inside. Many times I've taken trips to the stream here and there was some storm system sorta brewing or sorta nearby, but the wind and sea forecast for my intended trip looked "ok". Ass handed to me each time.

Learned that around here "light and slight" only applies if it has been that way for a couple days and forecast to be that way a couple more. If something is brewing out there, the forecast can be soooo wrong. Stay in or stay close.

On one of the vids, one cap or the other stated something like "the storm was only forecast to be XXXX." Key words "storm" and "NC".
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:10 PM   #23
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We were out last year in similar sized seas (10-12 foot, short interval and messy), but with no wind as a storm cycle had just moved through over the previous few days.

We overheated when my hot water tank shifted and kinked the outgoing coolant hose. The engine was down for a couple hours before I tracked down the problem. During this time we were rolling at 45 degrees, until we managed to anchor in 150 feet water.

My crew of one was totally incapacitated due to seasickness, and I wasn't feeling great either, after a big birthday party the previous night. . We didn't even consider notifying the the coast guard, never mind issuing a mayday.

Yes - we were sick and uncomfortable, and were having difficulty sorting out the problem, the contents of the cupboards were rolling around in the aisle, and my mother wasn't there, - but we were not in imminent danger.

They cheated death? - I think they cheated the coast guard & the tax payer.
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Old 02-27-2015, 06:56 AM   #24
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You are absolutely right. I definitely should not be making any assumptions since I'm a newbie.

Just goes to show how things can quickly domino on the inexperienced I guess.
Nothing wrong discussing mishaps...usually a good learning g tool.

Also nothing wrong with making a calculated guess and see where the "theoretical" problem/solution takes the discussion. It's how investigators try to fill in holes and piece together evidence.

It's just not fair to the people involved to make assumptions and assign blame without a large amount of facts, correctly pieced together.
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Old 02-27-2015, 08:52 AM   #25
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Significant winter storm potential around March 6, but major questions remain - Capital Weather Gang - The Washington Post This information was available when the "Captains" made the GO/NO GO analysis.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:18 AM   #26
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Marin, that area is well known for fast build up of seas during storm conditions. It is known as the "Graveyard of the Atlantic". This is the area where the Bounty went down last year. There are two shoals that extend far off shore----Diamond Shoals off Hatteras and Cape Lookout Shoals off the southern end of the outer banks. If you will look at the map you will see that Hatteras protrudes way out in the Atlantic. That's why it seems to take the brunt of many hurricanes. A new inlet can be cut at anytime.

This is where the Gulf Stream runs fairly close to shore, and meets the colder currents coming down from Canada. The Gulf Stream is moving in a northeasterly direction. When the wind is out of the North it plays havoc, and quickly.

I learned to boat in the offshore waters of NC. I have many scars and busted teeth as a result of it. Some of the inlets are shallow and horrific. Basically there are only 2 proven all weather inlets. They are Beaufort and Cape Fear Inlets. Masonboro is pretty good most of the time .

I don't know about boating on the Pacific, but in this area of the Atlantic seas can easily reach 20-30 ft and are very steep. Not like swells. Then they can have a nasty chop on top of that. Not for the novice. As Ski said, you can get your ass handed to you.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:21 AM   #27
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News weather....


Good, one tiny step in the accident analysis....one piece of the "decision making" puzzle.


Weather alone usually doesn't sink a boat or cause it to be abandoned...can be scary and damaging but not necessarily fatal.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:24 AM   #28
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Island Packet SP Cruiser ditched at sea

So knowing all that, why go outside? Hubris? Or maybe since they were from the Baltimore area they didn't didn't do enough research about the area and just didn't know how bad it could get?

There I go, speculating again...

Don/Psneed, I read that the ICW route is actually 70 miles shorter than going outside. Is this true?
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:29 AM   #29
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So knowing all that, why go outside? Hubris? Or maybe since they were from the Baltimore area they didn't didn't do enough research about the area and just didn't know how bad it could get?

There I go, speculating again...

Don/Psneed, I read that the ICW route is actually 70 miles shorter than going outside. Is this true?
There are actually 3 major and a few minor routes to get south/north in that area...going through the sounds versus the ICW is great but still weather dependent for many boats.

The real inside route doesn't go as far east....70 miles sounds about right.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:32 AM   #30
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I cited the article on the weather as just one example of what was available to assist in making the GO/NO GO decision. A look at the frontal situation and isobars before clearing the Virginia Capes was in order. Reading a weather map is as important as reading the Coast Pilot. And weather didn't sink this boat, it was abandoned while seaworthy.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:45 AM   #31
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If weather didn't sink the boat...then weather was only a partial factor...


If it was human weakness that brought it all on...that is an untested quality in most people.


Other weather reports may not have made the go/no go decision so black and white.
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Old 02-27-2015, 09:53 AM   #32
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If that had been me I would be hiding my head, not making a video

Quote:
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Very puzzling deal. While I've never been in a situation like that I can appreciate the fear that would take over just about everything. Couple that will being ill and the urge to get off the boat no matter what would be overwhelming. Particularly as there were just two of them on board and they didn't have the benefit of having someone along who was more able to cope with a situation like this. I probably would have just wanted to go home, too.

What I find particularly puzzling about all this is the video itself. Why publicize something that clearly illustrates one's incompetence. The line on the radio--- "The engine's shot"--- is rather telling. The engine stopped, okay. But it's not shot. They obvioulsy didn't have the knowledge to get it restarted-- I would not be surprised if what it needed was to have it bled after a slug of air stopped it. I can understand the reluctance to get down in the engine room or space and bleed a fuel system and engine with the boat heaving around like that.

But to my way of thinking, it's the ability to do that that sets the competent skippers apart from the herd.

I'm not at all familiar with that part of the world so don't know what the water conditions are like or what dangers lie under the water in that area. But from the footage, the sea conditions looked a lot like what it looks like in Hawaii a fair amount of the time. Not pleasant but certainly boatable if you're up to it and have a boat that's suited for it. Which the Island Packet seemed to be from the IR footage taken during the rescue.

The tone of the video seems to be that these two guys felt like they cheated death and pulled off a miraculous survival in the face of overwhelming obstacles. We're heroes, the video seems to be saying.

They may be to people who know nothing about boats and boating. But they clearly had no clue as to the nature of their capabiitles and thus exceeded their limitations by a huge amount.

I wonder if they know this?
When I was down in the Bay Area I used to laugh every time I heard a vessel assist request from a sail boat who's engine had failed. They are sail boats, right. I noticed from the video the the boat was fitted with a self furling jib. No attempt was mentioned of sailing the boat? A small triangle of that jib would have given them steerage and control. I'm sure sheets and furling lines are lead aft to the wheel house. These captains were incompetent at several levels, including too stupid to know it.
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:01 AM   #33
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I wonder if you asked these guys "Who is Adlard Coles?" what their answer would be.
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:09 AM   #34
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If weather didn't sink the boat...then weather was only a partial factor...


If it was human weakness that brought it all on...that is an untested quality in most people.


Other weather reports may not have made the go/no go decision so black and white.

Just to be clear, the boat didn't sink offshore. Also, the captain later said they were not taking on significant amounts of water, but just some that got in possibly through the outside lockers. He said the bilge pumps were keeping up.

The real reason I brought this up is because I have the same basic boat, and I wonder what I would do in that situation. If I had the family with me I would call the CG. No doubt. If it was just me and a buddy, I'm really not sure what I would actually do, but I would like to THINK I would try to bleed the air out and get the engine started. Maybe put out a sea anchor first to try to keep the boat pointed upwind, or if I had a sail rig put up a little sail and heave to possibly?

Do most boats that do some blue water cruising carry a sea anchor? Has anyone ever deployed one? Do they actually help ?
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:21 AM   #35
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Just to be clear, the boat didn't sink offshore. Also, the captain later said they were not taking on significant amounts of water, but just some that got in possibly through the outside lockers. He said the bilge pumps were keeping up.

The real reason I brought this up is because I have the same basic boat, and I wonder what I would do in that situation. If I had the family with me I would call the CG. No doubt. If it was just me and a buddy, I'm really not sure what I would actually do, but I would like to THINK I would try to bleed the air out and get the engine started. Maybe put out a sea anchor first to try to keep the boat pointed upwind, or if I had a sail rig put up a little sail and heave to possibly?

Do most boats that do some blue water cruising carry a sea anchor? Has anyone ever deployed one? Do they actually help ?
Make no F'ing mistake about it.....

Helo rescue is absolutely a dangerous evolution.....while the USCG and other rescue organizations make it look easy sometimes....WRONG ANSWER!!!!!

Keeping the family aboard a seaworthy boat is much safer...as long as the skipper can keep it afloat.

There's a thousand different avenues that could have been taken before, during and leading into post incident.

Without a thousand pages of trained accident investigators debating the incident.....everything else is exercising our own experiences and judgment in risk management.

Sea anchors may or may not be the answer...again without making a case study of this...and I won't because its worth thousands billable....there's always Monday Morning Quarterbacking which smacks of real inexperience in the real world, there litigation BS that the lawyers live for. there's accident/NTSB investigations that are mostly relevant and there's lessons learned from the rest of us.

Those willing to learn do so, those too busy pointing fingers are destined to do the same/equivalent some day....I think the term is arrogance.


I have personally flown, been involved with or managed similar cases..way too much info to post...buy me a few beers and we can discuss all of them...
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:29 AM   #36
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Make no F'ing mistake about it.....

Helo rescue is absolutely a dangerous evolution.....while the USCG and other rescue organizations make it look easy sometimes....WRONG ANSWER!!!!!

I have personally flown, been involved with or managed similar cases..way too much info to post...buy me a few beers and we can discuss all of them...

I understand. Would like to drink some beers and learn more.
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:34 AM   #37
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I understand. Would like to drink some beers and learn more.
Learning is important...but more so is the camaraderie and beer!
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:35 AM   #38
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It's the skippers knowledge and experience level in my opinion. Totally a bad choice by the owner of the boat but I'm sure he trusted them.

I know an owner of a Hatteras 60' power boat that trusted a non licensed sailboat owner to take his boat up and down the coast from Los Angeles to Cabo and on to La Paz. On the trip back he lost the boat. There were no pre checks and below deck checks while underway. Just watching the bilge light on occasion.

Watching the video made me think of this. Choosing a skipper should be common sense but I think the dollar blows that away.
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Old 02-27-2015, 10:38 AM   #39
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It's the skippers knowledge and experience level in my opinion. Totally a bad choice by the owner of the boat but I'm sure he trusted them.

I know an owner of a Hatteras 60' power boat that trusted a non licensed sailboat owner to take his boat up and down the coast from Los Angeles to Cabo and on to La Paz. On the trip back he lost the boat. There were no pre checks and below deck checks while underway. Just watching the bilge light on occasion.

Watching the video made me think of this. Choosing a skipper should be common sense but I think the dollar blows that away.
Not only the dollar but the resume'.....you can have a ton of credentials and experience...but it is still the person that is important to hire.


And this is where insurance companies have their preverbal heads up their butts....I have friends I would trust with my life and 100 ton to unlimited masters I would let walk my dog.
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Old 02-27-2015, 11:02 AM   #40
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I've been reading this with great interest and some anxiety. I'll be bringing a soon-to-be-mine Krogen 54 from Ketchikan to San Francisco this spring. The trip down the WA, OR, CA coasts always has the potential to deliver up some challenging seas.

I agree that we need to be cautious about pointing fingers, but it's worth asking questions and making observations.

As a sailor I have to wonder why there appears to have been no attempt to deploy sail. A sailboat without any sails up is not a very stable vessel in big seas. Even if motoring it's a good idea to have sail up to help the boat drive forward. A small amount of headsail can greatly improve the ability for the boat to track well and stay stable. I'd go as far as suggesting that if they had some sail up they may well not have experience the 50 degree heel.

I've not had my sailboat out in 30' seas (were they really 30'?) But in 15' seas under sail it will track very well with very little rolling if you quarter the waves.

I've been out in some big stuff but never really feared for my life. I don't know how I would react if I got to that point. Who does?

For certain I have made sure that knowing how to bleed the fuel system on my new boat is on the checklist!

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