Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 48 Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

A number of charter companies (including CYOA, I recall) require a signed confirmation from you at check-in after your charter that you have not touched the bottom or grounded. I have been told this is because some charterers did not report damage, hoping to get away with it and thereby exposed the charter company to liability in the event that there was damage that is not immediately visible, particularly if there was a subsequent problem. I would expect that making a false statement may invalidate the insurance cover and thereby remove the cap on liability provided by the deposit. YMMV...
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

If there are not a solid controls to protect/cover all parties it will be open for abuse...by all parties
Well, duh.....
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

Sorry. I thought I had pulled the quote from the earlier post suggesting not reporting the damage in order to provide context, but should have reviewed the post to make sure it came through

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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

I won't speculate on the extent of the damage, or cost of repairs, but I will comment on the need to report this to the charter company and the need to haul out and do a survey.

In recent years there has been three notable cases where a charter/teaching boats have been damaged in groundings, lost its keel, and lives were lost when the keels came off. There is a lot of attention on this issue at the moment, since boats are losing their keels with increasing frequency, not all of them dramatically, but enough cases that there is a global microscope on this issue.

Given the trials and settlements by the charter companies and boat owners, at this point it would be seen as negligence and potentially criminal negligence if the charter company did not haul out the boat and have it properly surveyed. In this case the boat in question is a comparatively lightly built, value oriented, coastal cruiser and so hitting a rock at any speed and no matter how glancing a blow would especially make the boat suspect for having damage.

As others have noted, the damage in a grounding may not be visible from the outside of the boat or exterior of the components that are delaminated or otherwise damaged. Its only through a systematic inspection that the absense or the full extent of the damage can be determined. For example, in at least one of the recent fatal keel loss cases, there was minor damage to a frame that was repaired but there was unobserved damage in the form of delamination of the hull forward of the keel. Over time the delamination peeled aft until the keel and the bottom of the hull pulled away.

In my mind, the charter company would not be acting appropriately or ethically if they did not haul the boat and have it carefully surveyed.

But beyond the responsibility of the charter company, I respectfully suggest that in my personal opinion, whatever excuses one might be able to come up with for not reporting the grounding, there is an ethical responsibility to report the incident. In my mind, failure to report the incident would make you negligent and if per chance, there was serious enough damage that the keel was indeed lost and worse yet if lives were lost, the moral responsibility would fall heavily on your shoulders.

In a broader sense, the few charter agreements that I have seen include the ability to purchase insurance that covers a deductible for damage to the boat while in your use. I don't know if that was the case here, but the lesson in this for all of us is that we might want to more carefully consider whether to cough up the money for that supplemental insurance. In the words of the old Dave Bromberg song, "A man should never gamble with more than he has to lose".

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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

I didn't see anywhere where the deposit was a cap on potential liability. In my experience, whenever I've rented something, any "deposit" I put down is only that: a deposit towards whatever sum I actually owe.

Here, I would guess that hauling the boat and getting a surveyor is going to cost at least 1000 euros.
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

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I didn't see anywhere where the deposit was a cap on potential liability. In my experience, whenever I've rented something, any "deposit" I put down is only that: a deposit towards whatever sum I actually owe.
Again, my fault for not being more explicit.

A lot of charter contracts give you the option (for a fee) or explicitly include qualified charterers to be covered by the vessel insurance. The deposit is therefore set at a level that covers the deductible under the insurance. It was an assumption on my part but based on experience of being on both sides of a charter contract over the years.
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

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But beyond the responsibility of the charter company, I respectfully suggest that in my personal opinion, whatever excuses one might be able to come up with for not reporting the grounding, there is an ethical responsibility to report the incident.
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

I had basically the identical scenario happen to me on a charter a while ago. This was in the states, Chesapeake Bay, I managed to find one of the 5 or so rocks in the otherwise entirely mud and sand bay. My impact was more of a skip/bump stop rather than an immediate hard stop with the bow pitching into the water or something like that. In my inexperience I still thought the boat was going to sink and we'd all die, but everything was fine. I had a $1000 damage deposit/limit. I told the company when I returned, fully expecting I'd likely lose the full grand. The charter company operators were mostly cool, maybe in part because the impact was in part due to the fact that their char plotter didn't show the depth properly where I ran aground. They put it up on a sling, took a look and said all's good, just scratched paint, and charged me for the cost of the lift, $250. Hopefully you'll have a similar outcome. That 3500 Euro is a doozy of a deposit, I guess their insurance deductible is that high. From the pics, it looks like your damage was similar to mine, that definitely appears to be on the front bottom of the bulb. In my inexperienced opinion any sailboat that can't handle a grounding like that is real turd of a boat. Bumping into the bottom at modest speed is pretty well within the design parameters for such a thing. If doing so causes the hull to delaminate and fall off the boat months later that was some crap engineering. Hull speed into a concrete or steel piling, maybe different story. Not that any of that opinion is of consequence to your issue at hand though. Good luck.
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Re: Hit a rock with chartered boat in Sardinia

Modern chartering sounds extremely dangerous to your wallet
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