Over Hill Sailing Club
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Adirondacks NY
Thanked 94 Times in 91 Posts
Rep Power: 7
Re: Rallies Gone Wrong
I have read through this whole thread and in all the finger pointing and blaming weak/scared crews boats not ready for the voyage and all, not one person has gotten the facts right. I love how people are so quick the judge others when they do not have a clue as to the facts. I have listened to these boats everyday on the SSB. I have heard the distress calls as they came in. I have a good friend on one of the boats towed in. So I will summarize.
First boat down a Cartalina 54? catamaran, lost mast, made it back in under their own power. Distress call but refused help just wanted CG aware.
Second boat down Braveheart. Injury broken arm. Distress call but made it in under their own after they found it unsafe for injured crew transfer.
Third boat down Alden 54 ketch, lost rudder, was towed to Chesapeake after drifting for 2 days.
Fourth boat down, Morgen 41 Outisland, Taking on water (beyond what pumps could keep up with), Bulkheads coming apart, severely sick crew. Crew of 4 air lifted to Elizabeth City
Fifth boat down, Hans Christen 38, lost mast, vessel still underway under their own power to Norfolk, No assistance given. Reported in this evening all is well aboard.
Sixth boat down, Catalina 42, lost rudder, waited 3 days for tow should be back in this evening. (I personally spoke with this skipper while at sea and he simply was not equipped for makeshift repairs.)
Seventh boat down Catalina 38, lost steering and engine. tried to make Bermuda but had to give up with no help from private tow (their first choice) They were advised to abandon by USCG because of worsening weather condition and little hope of other help. 3 crew air lifted today to Elizabeth city. (so they tried for 3 days to make a go of it)
Lastly Aurora had a false alarm on their EPIRB, Capt. admitted mistake while checking gear. No assistance needed however a plane was sent to their location before the mistake was found.
So 2 boats had air rescues only 1 with sick crew and they were breaking up. Second air lift at the assistance of CG as there was little hope for anything else.
2 boats towed back due to no steering.
The fleet left knowing a cold front was to pass but it was supposed to pass fast and then good conditions, Instead it stalled and the fleet was stuck in the stream with 20-25. The problems came in the squalls with 30-40 against the stream.
I do not think the skippers did that bad if anything maybe they were not fully prepared to do jury rigs and make emergency repairs.
At least now this thread can have some real facts to work with. For those that belittle those out there claiming they were just seasick you can see now there was more to it. Until you have been there maybe we should not be so quick to judge.
Nice analysis. The basic mistake highlighted above. The words, "supposed to," are not those I would bet my life on, knowing how difficult weather is to predict. Knowing a November cold front was imminent was the ONLY thing they needed to know. "...t'was the witch of November come stealin'...Lightfoot.
Alberg 35: With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship.