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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?
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Thread: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-06-2013 02:53 PM
L124C
Still there...now unmarked!

I was in the estuary this weekend. The wreck is still there (pictures below). When I first saw it, it had two large plastic barrels attached to it that served as effective buoys to mark it. Unfortunately, now they are gone. It now occurs to me that the barrels might have been the result of a salvage attempt. The wreck should be marked, as the mast can be hard to see at dusk or in the dark. and it could come into play at high tide with a lot of traffic. I used to think the CG took care of things like this, especially given that their main station is in the estuary. Boy, was I naive!
A similar boat is now wrecked on the bay shoreline, about a half mile South of the mouth of the estuary. However, being in the bay, it shouldn't be a Nav hazard.
04-22-2013 04:16 AM
L124C
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fstbttms View Post
Abandoned vessels are an issue for many marina operators and I guarantee that the state (at least this state) does not simply "bail them out." There is no bottomless pool of money available to deal with abandoned vessels, it practically takes an act of Congress to get what money there is and the legalities, paperwork and man-hours required of marina staff are a burden on them that they are not reimbursed for.
Nobody said it was a "bottomless" pool. However, I can assure you state funds are commonly used at my marina to despose of boats (and you admit to as much below). If you don't like the term "bailing out" let's call it subsidizing. And yes...if the marina wants the money, they have to do the paperwork. However I contend the state shouldn't be paying for any of it. The marina staff can do less paperwork by having the marina sustain itself, rather than relying on taxpayers, most of whom, don't even own boats.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fstbttms View Post
If there was no state-funded assistance available to remove abandoned vessels, there would be many more of them in our marinas and waterways polluting the water and being hazards to navigation.
True, for examples like the one you provided in post #4. However, marinas should be self sufficient or go out of business as a failed business model. If slip fees don't cover costs, it ain't workin!

Here...allow me to save you the effort.
"Oh brother!"
04-21-2013 11:25 AM
paul323
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

I remember seeing a television program about the cost of removing a single abandoned boat; it was enormous.

First there was months (years?) of legal discussions, environmental and other investigations, reviews, and negotiations over the (agency) ownership of the problem and allocation of the costs (county/county/state/federal/EPA/other).

The site was inspected, and then monitored during the salvage by at least 3 environmental agencies; and a couple of other interested parties (I recall 5 monitoring agencies). Booms were deployed to prevent oil spills; the boat was raised carefully by divers (to prevent any pollutants escaping), and then loaded onto a barge to be dismantled in an environmentally-concious fashion.

I think this was in Florida; so CA would likely be worse. I think it cost around hundred thousand to raise what seemed like a mid-20s ft powerboat.

I was stunned at the cost and inefficiency or the process.

For the locals, look at treasure island - deciding who will develop that has gone on for what, 10 years? They did clean the wrecks out of Clipper Cove, though...so I am guessing that mast will be visible for a few years yet.
04-21-2013 10:56 AM
Fstbttms
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by L124C View Post
They can't "know" but they can certainly make an educated guess, as I do when I rent properties. Would I be as motivated to find good tenants if the state was going to bail me out? I think not.
Abandoned vessels are an issue for many marina operators and I guarantee that the state (at least this state) does not simply "bail them out." There is no bottomless pool of money available to deal with abandoned vessels, it practically takes an act of Congress to get what money there is and the legalities, paperwork and man-hours required of marina staff are a burden on them that they are not reimbursed for.

If there was no state-funded assistance available to remove abandoned vessels, there would be many more of them in our marinas and waterways polluting the water and being hazards to navigation.
04-21-2013 03:06 AM
L124C
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fstbttms View Post
I think it's ridiculous to assume the marina staff can know who will eventually abandon their boats and who won't. And if you feel it's necessary to put the entire financial burden on the marina, I sure don't want to hear a peep out of you when your slip fees inevitably go up to cover that additional cost of doing business.
They can't "know" but they can certainly make an educated guess, as I do when I rent properties. Would I be as motivated to find good tenants if the state was going to bail me out? I think not.
Regarding slip fees...They should charge whatever it takes to cover costs. There is no reason for taxpayers to subsidize a marina (IMHO!)
More importantly, they should spend slip fees on the Marina. About $500,000 gets redirected annually from my (municipal) marina, while the marina deteriorates. You can bet the marina will be rebuilt by state redevelopment funds. Again...the taxpayer gets fleeced!
Anyway, we digress!
04-20-2013 07:37 PM
SlowButSteady
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by L124C View Post
Wow...demasted AND sunk. Thats a bad day on the water! Wonder if the lines were not indicated on the charts?...
As I recall, the boat wasn't dismasted. The river was very high and there was a pretty strong current running. When the mast got caught on the wires the boat itself kept going with the current until it tipped too far and flooded. I think the owner/skipper of the boat was claiming that the bridge operator (or someone...anyone) should have warned him that the charted clearance for the wires was in error because of the unusual height of the river. Of course, all such heights are relative to a datum and the skipper should have realized that the river was well above that datum.
04-20-2013 06:18 PM
L124C
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SlowButSteady View Post
A decade or two ago a fairly large wooden yacht got its mast caught on some powerlines and sank just down stream from one of the drawbridges over the Sacramento River, near Downtown Sac. As I recall, it sat there for quite some time because the owner of the boat, the power company, the drawbridge operator (Southern Pacific RR, IIRC), the city of Sacramento, CalTrans, and probably a half a dozen others, all got into a legal kerfuffle over fault/liability. I wonder if this boat in the Oakland Estuary is caught up in a similar situation.
Wow...demasted AND sunk. Thats a bad day on the water! Wonder if the lines were not indicated on the charts?
If the sailboat in Oakland was avoiding a tug and container ship (as suggested in another post), I don't know what the legal issues could be. I think the ship and tug certainly would have had rights as they were in operating in a confined channel. Maybe the owner is suing the county for lining the esturay with boulders!
04-20-2013 02:10 AM
Fstbttms
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

Quote:
Originally Posted by L124C View Post
I can only assume this means you disagree, and think the state should be responsible for disposal of recreational vessels?
I think it's ridiculous to assume the marina staff can know who will eventually abandon their boats and who won't. And if you feel it's necessary to put the entire financial burden on the marina, I sure don't want to hear a peep out of you when your slip fees inevitably go up to cover that additional cost of doing business.
04-19-2013 05:14 PM
SlowButSteady
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

A decade or two ago a fairly large wooden yacht got its mast caught on some powerlines and sank just down stream from one of the drawbridges over the Sacramento River, near Downtown Sac. As I recall, it sat there for quite some time because the owner of the boat, the power company, the drawbridge operator (Southern Pacific RR, IIRC), the city of Sacramento, CalTrans, and probably a half a dozen others, all got into a legal kerfuffle over fault/liability. I wonder if this boat in the Oakland Estuary is caught up in a similar situation.
04-19-2013 04:06 PM
crstophr
Re: Sunken sailboat in Oakland Estuary. What Happened?

I think abandoned boats already are a significant factor in running a marina.... I suspect this has been true for decades. Most marinas seem to have established procedures for dealing with them.

Thank you to the OP for posting this question. I've been sailing past this mast sticking out of the water in the estuary for a year now wondering what the story is. Do we know any other details?

Still... it serves as a nice little reality check and warning to keep our wits about us when heading out.

--Chris
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