Barge vs Sailboat on IL river - SailNet Community

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Old 07-07-2009
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Barge vs Sailboat on IL river

When a barge and Sailboat collide...Sailboat loses

Survivors From Sailboat Crash Speak | WEEK News 25 | Local News

A pre-wedding present that will never be forgotten! Apparently, the sailboat lost wind in the middle of the channel, and was unable to maneuver out of the way of the barge. The barge operator is being credited with preventing several fatalities as he threw all power to the stern and prevented sailboat and occupants from being sucked underneath.
Luckily only "bumps and scrapes" to those onboard, but I don't think the Sailboat fared quite as well.

Last edited by RestlessWind; 07-07-2009 at 08:09 PM.
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Old 07-08-2009
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Barges under tow are dangerous. I used to see them all the time when I cruised on the Hudson River in NY and always gave them a wide berth.

I recall reading a story a few years back about a mother and her son who were killed during a night time sail on Long Island Sound. Speculation was that they had sailed between the tug and the barge it was towing. No wittnesses, but paint matching the sailboat was found on the front of the barge. Sad!
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Old 07-08-2009
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Not to belittle the Captain of the sailboat, but couldn't he see something that big coming at him? Was there no motor?.......i2f
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Old 07-08-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagine2frolic View Post
Not to belittle the Captain of the sailboat, but couldn't he see something that big coming at him?
Apparently he could.

Quote:
Originally Posted by imagine2frolic View Post
Was there no motor?.......
From the linked article:
Quote:
"... It was a combination of not getting the wind in the sails and not able to get the onboard engine of the sailboat started,"
I wonder if the wind was coming from the direction of the barge? Light air, sails in front of the barge, gets in its wind shadow, wind dies, engine won't start...

I would never sail in front of one of those big freighters that come up and down the Lk. St. Clair channel unless it was far, far, far away.

Jim
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Old 07-08-2009
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Somehow I missed the statement about the motor. One would think sailing those waters for 40 years he would have know better than to get close. The good news is all are alive. A bit shaken, and much smarter, but alive........i2f
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