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Old 02-26-2013, 11:38 AM   #1
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A Good Reason to have an EPIRB

Coast Guard releases distress call from boat carrying missing family off California coast

Published February 26, 2013
FoxNews.com


In an attempt to identify the family that went missing far off the coast of Central California Sunday, the U.S. Coast Guard released the audio distress call from the sailboat that was taking on water.
A man's voice could be heard in the recording. He identified the name of the boat-- the Charmblow-- and confirmed that its passengers were abandoning ship. The boat was 60 miles west of Monterey at the time. Passengers said they'd try to make a raft out of a cooler and life rings.
"There is still no information on where the boat was coming from, where it was going or who the people on board are," said Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Mike Lutz. There have been no reports of missing persons in the case.
The unidentified family of four included two children under 8. Forecasters had issued a weekend advisory warning boaters of rough seas in the area, and water temperatures typically are in the 40s and 50s, making long-term survival difficult.
The group made its first distress call late Sunday afternoon, said Coast Guard Lt. Heather Lampert. The boaters reported that their 29-foot sailboat was taking on water and the electronics were failing.
"We will just saturate the search area with as many assets as we can, so we can hopefully rescue them," Lutz said.
Investigators determined from the broken distress calls that the family included a husband and wife, their 4-year-old son and his cousin, Lampert said.
The boat's location initially was reported farther north, but Lampert said investigators now believe the call came from west of Monterey Bay, about 100 miles south of San Francisco. The boat did not have a working GPS system.
Calls to harbors in California have failed to locate the boat, and database searches have come up empty, Lampert said. The Coast Guard was expanding its search to Hawaii, the Seattle area and north into Canada.
The Associated Press contributed to this report





Read more: Coast Guard releases distress call from boat carrying missing family off California coast | Fox News
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:03 PM   #2
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Its easy to armchair QB these but this is looking more and more like a hoax. I certainly hope that's all it turns out to be because if its not then it was certainly criminal to take kids out that far on a boat that ill equipped in those conditions.
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:25 PM   #3
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Hi Bob, this is all over the news here since it is local. The Coast Gaurd triangulated on the radio signal (probably not proper terminology) and it came from 60 whatever miles off shore, where they started searching. So it seems unlikely it is a hoax??? Otherwise someone would have seen the vessel that DID make the VHF transmission?
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:53 PM   #4
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Jennifer I'm sure it is a media circus which is precisely the main reason why I think this may be a hoax. Its getting worldwide coverage - so where's the family/friends who were expecting these people or worrying about their trip? If it was my 4 year old travelling at this time of year I'd be all over it. If it was my brother/friend I might not be quite as obsessed but I'd be paying attention nevertheless.

At that distance offshore VHF location is a guess at best. Which could explain why the search has turned up nothing. There was a 13 metre fishing boat lost off Halifax last week - they found the vessel in a storm and then lost it again for 2 days despite "knowing" its location. That's also a bigger vessel than the one they are looking for off the California coast.

I sincerely hope I'm right and this turns out to be a hoax because if you are right and its legit then they're all dead.
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Old 02-26-2013, 01:13 PM   #5
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60 miles off Monterey, why? And it was nasty this weekend, I was going to go out on Saturday just to run the engines but it didn't look comfortable even in the bay. No dinghy, no life raft, no epirb.

We're all hoping it is a hoax but the Coast Guard lady on tv this AM seemed sure it was real.
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Old 02-26-2013, 01:32 PM   #6
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very sad indeed and very very irresponsible.
keep in mind there was a weather advisory on these dates, swells reported to be 12ft.
i did hear the fellow on the radio and it struck me he sounded very calm, not at all panic stricken or stressed..
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Old 02-26-2013, 01:39 PM   #7
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.........i did hear the fellow on the radio and it struck me he sounded very calm, not at all panic stricken or stressed..
Do you mean you heard him on the VHF or you listened to the recording?
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:27 PM   #8
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Do you mean you heard him on the VHF or you listened to the recording?
i listened to the recording broadcast by the news media..
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:31 PM   #9
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Bob I totally agree, where is the family stepping forward to say it was their kid that was the "cousin" on the boat? I, too, hope it was a hoax from the standpoint of hoping four lives weren't lost. Doesn't seem like anyone has come up with a boat called "Charmblow" but hearing the recording, I can't say for sure that was the name of the boat!!
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:27 PM   #10
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Now the LA Times and others are calling it a Hoax......

Distress call from sinking sailboat may be hoax, Coast Guard says - latimes.com
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Old 02-26-2013, 04:44 PM   #11
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kinda smelled like one from the beginning...though if the USCG actually triangulated the broadcast...not many originate from 60 miles out...

unless it's bad guys looking to pull the assets out of some place else....
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:22 PM   #12
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It will be a great relief, in one sense, if the distress call turns out a hoax. But there is another side.
It appears any number of pieces of equipment, and people, were utilised in the search. Some people may have risked their own safety to assist. What of someone in genuine emergency where help was delayed or denied, while safety authorities responded to the hoax,(if it be so).
To prosecute authorities must identify the "hoaxer", if a hoax. If so, sure and swift prosecution should follow.
A GPS EPIRB would have identified the position of the caller within 100 metres or less.
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:59 PM   #13
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Assuming this turns out to be in fact a hoax I expect there is very little chance anyone will ever be charged. I can't imagine what twisted psyche would find this entertaining. There's a lot of things in this world that I don't understand.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:07 PM   #14
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Bob,
It seems Psneeld thinks might be bad guys who wanted to shift the CG resources away from their scene, guess is possible but man what a bad hoax.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:12 PM   #15
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Bob,
It seems Psneeld thinks might be bad guys who wanted to shift the CG resources away from their scene, guess is possible but man what a bad hoax.
At this risk of turning this thread in the wrong direction, there's a lot of things in your country getting blamed on those evil "bad guys". My experience in life is that more is explained by stupidity than malice.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:28 PM   #16
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My experience in life is that more is explained by stupidity than malice.
I agree wholeheartedly.
Hopefully this was a hoax and no one was in trouble.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:51 PM   #17
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Having been the Law Enfocement officer at USCG Air Station Miami, Fl during the quick rise of the drug war and a few other places with peaking water crimes.....my experience knows false alarms go hand in hand...

Don't know about this case...but it's always a possibility....

You are right thinking supidity is an overwhelming and common force when it comes to some boaters....
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:59 AM   #18
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As a member of the USCGAUX in Southern California I had the opportunity to work the radio stations and equipment that does the triangulation for VHF calls. It's pretty accurate and triangulates rather quickly on approximate positions. The positions are approximate. The call more than likely did indeed originate offshore so not a shoreside hoax. But that doesn't mean someone from offshore wasn't playing games. I suspect only time will tell. I would also think that any vessels offshore whether in trouble or not would be picked up by the search teams. Chuck
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:15 AM   #19
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Greetings,
Is it possible for a VHF signal to "skip"? Meaning the call might have originated from a very long distance away and been picked up in LA.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:42 AM   #20
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Greetings,
Is it possible for a VHF signal to "skip"? Meaning the call might have originated from a very long distance away and been picked up in LA.
I'm not sure the exact definition is skip...but yes VHF can go much further than line of sight.

However, I don't think you could triangulate on a "skip"...maybe a ham could chime in..
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