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  #611  
Old 11-16-2011
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Rule 62

Don't get me started. Again.
I would love to hear an accurate account of what happened and what could have been done differently, in hindsight. I believe we could get that from the crew from Maine. I think his name was Dave? I wish he would post an accurate account of their trials and tribulations.

meanwhile the caribe 1500 is happening as we speak. New owners, new fleet watcher.
Go to: Caribe1500.com to watch it unfold. Their is a nice duel between Fat Car (a morelli designed cat) and Blackbird ( a Tripp designed maxi racer)
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  #612  
Old 11-16-2011
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Yep, Bummer no new info has come to light. This story, in particular, really makes me want to know how the events unfolded.
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  #613  
Old 11-01-2012
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

Getting close to the anniversary... This is one story that will always stick with me... Not trying to cause drama, just remembering the event...
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  #614  
Old 11-01-2012
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

I remember Rule 62 almost everyday in the last two years. When I was on route to BVI in last year C1500 at the closest point to Bahamas, I faced toward Marsh Harbor, said a little prayer for Laura's family and asked the Water God for his mercy. I found peace within.
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Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

Apparently the lawsuit stemming from this tragedy is still churning. What's very interesting is that it was filed under the Jones Act. That doesn't cover volunteer, unpaid crew on yachts but it does cover paid crew. Laura's estate is claiming that she was paid crew because she was given airfare and meals, interviewed for the position, and given orders as a crew member.

I can't post links but you can find them at raleyraleylawfirm dot com.

Raley & Raley Wins Motion in Laura Zekoll Jones Act Death Case

Wed, 01/09/2013 - 13:42 -- craley
After 16 months of discovery and defense motions aimed at dismissing the case, Raley & Raley just received a very favorable Order of Remand from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia in a Jones Act case filed on behalf of the Estate of Laura Zekoll. Ms. Zekoll was lost at sea and killed on November 13, 2010 near Lynyard Cay, Abacos, Bahamas, when her employer, Richard Ross, the Captain of the sailing vessel RULE 62, attempted to enter the unlit and unmarked North Bar Channel at night in what locals call a "rage sea". Capt. Ross had never navigated this area and had very limited experience sailing in the open ocean. Angela T. Cushwa, as Administrator of the Estate of Laura Zekoll, Deceased v. Richard H. Ross, Case No. 1:11-cv-03485-CAP.

January 9, 2013: Northern District of Georgia Remands Jones Act Case handled by Raley & Raley to Fulton County State Court

In a 12-page Order entered on January 9, 2013, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia granted a Motion to Remand filed by Raley & Raley on behalf of their Client, the Estate of Laura Zekoll.

On November 13, 2010, Ms. Zekoll was swept overboard and killed when her employer, the Captain of the S/V RULE 62, attempted to enter the unlit and unmarked North Bar Channel, Lynyard Cay, Abacos, Bahamas at night in a violent sea state.

Jones Act cases are not removable from State Court to Federal Court. Raley & Raley filed the case in the State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. The Defendant, Richard Ross, removed the case to Federal Court, alleging that Ms. Zekoll was not a Jones Act seaman.

The District Court ultimately granted the Motion to Remand filed by Raley & Raley on behalf of the Zekoll Estate, holding that "...the Plaintiff here has put forth facts that could, if true, demonstrate that Zekoll was hired as a crew member for the Rule 62, meaning that she was acting as a sea-based worker at the time of the accident. The plaintiff avers that (1) Ross paid Zekoll compensation in the form of airfare and meals, (2) interviewed her for the crew position, and (3) gave her orders as a crewmember while the ship was underway...Given these allegations, the court concludes that the defendant has not met his burden to show that the plaintiff has fraudulently pled a Jones Act claim. These facts, if true, could lead a rational trier of fact to conclude that Zekoll's connection to the Rule 62 was substantial both in its duration and nature. Therefore, this case should be remanded to state court as a non-removable Jones Act claim." Angela T. Cushwa, as Administrator of the Estate of Laura Zekoll, Deceased v. Richard H. Ross, Case No. 1:11-cv-03485-CAP.
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  #616  
Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

It hurts every time when I think about Rule 62. I feel the pain of Laura's family. I was told that she was the last minute replacement crew after the previous crew (also a she) could not participate in C1500.

But anyway, Suing the Captain is just wrong. We all know the risks when we sign on the voyage. Making other responsible for the death is troublesome for me. It is going to have a profound impact on future in crewing and captaining either pay or not.

But it is easy for me to say, I respect their decision/action.
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I am old school. Integrity is to do the right thing even when no one is watching.
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  #617  
Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

My guess is that this is a case of an ambulance chasing lawyer working on a contingency fee....and now he's been reduced to grasping at straws in an attempt to salvage what investment he may have in the case. Fortunately, he found a judge that didn't know squat about offshore sailing and was willing to fall for the "employment" argument.

Quote:
The District Court ultimately granted the Motion to Remand filed by Raley & Raley on behalf of the Zekoll Estate, holding that "...the Plaintiff here has put forth facts that could, if true, demonstrate that Zekoll was hired as a crew member for the Rule 62, meaning that she was acting as a sea-based worker at the time of the accident. The plaintiff avers that (1) Ross paid Zekoll compensation in the form of airfare and meals, (2) interviewed her for the crew position, and (3) gave her orders as a crewmember while the ship was underway...Given these allegations, the court concludes that the defendant has not met his burden to show that the plaintiff has fraudulently pled a Jones Act claim. These facts, if true, could lead a rational trier of fact to conclude that Zekoll's connection to the Rule 62 was substantial both in its duration and nature. Therefore, this case should be remanded to state court as a non-removable Jones Act claim."
A close read of the above suggests he may have won a motion, but he's still a long way from winning the case.

I've offered crew airfares and meals on several occasions and my insurance company doesn't consider that "paid crew". When I made a contribution to a crew member's sailing charity to enable him to join me for a three month passage, the insurance company did consider that he was paid crew and I had to pay a $300 supplement to the base policy to cover potential liabilities arising from his presence on the boat.

This is a tragedy of the first order. The lessons have been learned and nothing is going to bring Laura home from the sea. IMHO, it's long past time to let it begin to fade from our memories.

Last edited by billyruffn; 04-04-2013 at 09:22 PM.
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Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

Quote:
Originally Posted by billyruffn View Post
My guess is that this is a case of an ambulance chasing lawyer working on a contingency fee....and now he's been reduced to grasping at straws in an attempt to salvage what investment he may have in the case. Fortunately, he found a judge that didn't know squat about offshore sailing and was willing to fall for the "employment" argument.



A close read of the above suggests he may have won a motion, but he's still a long way from winning the case.

I've offered crew airfares and meals on several occasions and my insurance company doesn't consider that "paid crew". When I made a contribution to a crew member's sailing charity to enable him to join me for a three month passage, the insurance company did consider that he was paid crew and I had to pay a $300 supplement to the base policy to cover potential liabilities arising from his presence on the boat.

This is a tragedy of the first order. The lessons have been learned and nothing is going to bring Laura home from the sea. IMHO, it's long past time to let it begin to fade from our memories.
Yep same with the Bounty
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Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

Quote:
Originally Posted by rockDAWG View Post
It hurts every time when I think about Rule 62. I feel the pain of Laura's family. I was told that she was the last minute replacement crew after the previous crew (also a she) could not participate in C1500.

But anyway, Suing the Captain is just wrong. We all know the risks when we sign on the voyage. Making other responsible for the death is troublesome for me. It is going to have a profound impact on future in crewing and captaining either pay or not.

But it is easy for me to say, I respect their decision/action.
For the Bounty too right?
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  #620  
Old 04-05-2013
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Re: Sinking of Rule 62

No, the Bounty is entirely different. The Bounty's skipper was a paid professional that led his crew to their death the moment he and only he decided they were going to leave the dock. Rule 62 seems to be a tragedy caused by inexperience.
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