Okay, I can draw a few conclusions as to what happened to the three sailors, using the evidence provided.
Also, I'm not sure if that picture is when they first FOUND the boat or when the coast guard people were bringing it back... because there are fenders on the port side.
If so, we can take the fenders into account...
The fenders are lowered at deck level, which suggests the boat was being prepped for docking with another boat.
They do not say weather they activated their EPBIRB, as they mention an "emergency beacon", I assume they did, or else, why would the emergency crew "find" and board the boat.
The engine was also running, but we don't know if it was in neatral, charging batteries, or in gear(perhaps they were motoring in calm weater, the seas look quite flat.
they said there was no life-raft left on boat(that could mean "dinghy" in press language) but we do not know if they actually carried one.
So here are the possibilities.
Possibility #1) All crew somehow fell overboard during the "windier" conditions the article proposed without life-jackets on and the boat sailed away.
Likelyhood is a little low, as there were kitchen utensils on the table. If they were in "rough" seas, the utensils probably would be all over the cabin, so they must have set them afterwards.
Possibility #2) They were just getting to eat dinner, decided to go for a swim when they were becalmed... jumped in the water, wind came in, and the boat sailed away in light winds.
Likelyhood is higher here, but still low, as you would have to be really stupid or intoxicated to do that in the open Ocean, methinks. But it could have been the case, who knows.
The fenders on the boat might suggest they were trying to rondevous with another boat. Perhaps.
a. A boat full of naked hot and horny, well-tanned women. They were brought on board their boat, seduced, out of wild sexual abandon and pleasure they said "to hell with that catamaran, we're staying here", and they continued sailing to fiji.
b. They tried to assist another boat in trouble, and got themselves in trouble in the process
c. Pirates (not likely in Australia), so we will exlude this.
They seas got a bit rough, they were inexperienced, panic took over, and they abandoned ship... but again, not likely since the utensils on the table were in order and food was ready to go.
After carefully weighing the options, I think it makes most sense that some kind of unexpected accident happened right when everything was "calm"(as they were preparing lunch) and everyone had their guard down, that's when accidents can have devastating affects and judgement is impaired as you under-estimate things.
There was a case a long ago with two brothers sailing across the Ocean...
The first brother lost his wrist watch over-board during calm conditions... and instictively jumped in after it without a line attached.
The second brother, upon seeing his brother "fall" overboard from the cabin, raced to the cockbit and jumped after his brother to rescue him, later realizing he too was not attached to the boat.
the boat sailed away at a good clip in light winds that they obviously couldn't swim up to. They were rescued miraculously by natives in canoes, as the boat just happened to sail straight into an island 30 miles away, and they natives took a bunch of canoes and headed to where the boat came from.
.... So - I think a possible scenario could be...
Calmer condtions, making food. One person somehow falls overboard from being careless(we've all almost done it many times just by not hanging on to something)
The other two start panicing and taking action . "Take out the dingy! Start the engine! Tie the fenders so he can climb back on!"
The engine is started. They are sailing further and further away from the MOB, they panic, "activate the EPBIRB!" another person jumps in bravely to try to save their friend, the third tries to get the dinghy to help the two guys without lifejackets stay a float.... wihtout thinking, he jumps in the dinghy and goes after them, loosley attaches a line, it slips, the boat sails away...
That's my take on it. Sorry for the long analysis.
I do hope it was the boat full of naked women though. If not, I hope they are found
Last edited by Kacper; 04-20-2007 at 06:40 AM.