SailNet Community banner

1 - 20 of 66 Posts

·
moderate?
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Off Block Island in a snow storm!

BOSTON - The Coast Guard rescued four people aboard a storm-ravaged sailboat Friday, about 7 miles south of Block Island, R.I. The crew of the 45-foot Moonshine left East Greenwich, R.I., Friday morning, bound for Puerto Rico, when they were caught in an offshore storm, which ripped their sails and disabled their propulsion. They activated their emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB). The Coast Guard received the signal and tracked their position.
The First District Command Center in Boston, launched a 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from Station Point Judith, R.I. and a helicopter crew from Air Station Cape Cod. Both crews arrived at about 1 a.m., at the last position the EPIRB indicated, but because of the 30-40 knot winds, the sailboat was drifting out of position faster than the beacon could transmit. Visibility was less than one mile, and the seas were 8-12 feet.
The crew of the Moonshine shot off a flare, and the rescue crews located the disabled sailboat and determined no one was injured.
The motor lifeboat crew took the Moonshine in tow. After a nearly seven-hour transit, they arrived near Montauk, N.Y., and transferred the tow to a Station Montauk lifeboat crew who took the Moonshine and crew safely to Montauk at about 9 a.m., today.
“If they didn’t have the EPIRB or flares, it would have been extremely hard to find them out there in the snow,” said Lt. j.g. Ben O’Loughlin, the watchstander at the command center in Boston.
Air temperature was 39 degrees and the water, 42 degrees.

CapeCodToday Blog Chowder
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
Got to agree, what could they possibly have been thinking? I live south of Boston; we've known since at least last Wednesday that a winter storm was going to hit us around mid day Friday, and it did... was down at the harbor at 4 pm yesterday, 30 knot gusts and vis about 100 yards in blowing snow... we looked at the water and I said to my wife "sure am glad we're not out there now". What were they thinking? Bob S/V Restless
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
The Lord generally protects fools and small children. I guess this also holds for foolish sailors. Wanna bet they had a schedule to meet?

The two most important lessons I have learned since I started cruising are:

1. Pay attention to the weather. If conditions don't look right, stay where you are until they look better.

2. Don't put yourself on a schedule. If you have to ask "why not", you shouldn't be cruising.

Another potential tragedy at sea that could have been avoided. Thank you USCG!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,372 Posts
Hey, let's go sailing!

Hey Everyone,

Let's go sailing! Just because it's December in the North East, and the temperature is below freezing and the wind is in the 30's and there is a storm here and it's blowing snow and ice and freezing rain, it will be fun!

For the life of me I can't imagine why anyone would willingly leave the dock in this weather. Maybe if you were in a 100' powerboat with a full crew, the trip would be just uncomfortable, but leaving in a 45' sailboat is just pure stupidity.

I always like to give people the benefit of the doubt, but I would really like to ask the skipper what he thought would happen when he left the dock.

Some people!

Barry
 

·
Tartan 27' owner
Joined
·
5,242 Posts
Hoo boy! Sounds like fun (Not)!
They are so lucky that the coasties were able to save their silly a$$es AND tow their sailboat back into Montauk with all that canvas flogging itself to death.
Perhaps they will try again in a month or so once the boat has new sails or perhaps they will hire a delivery captain.
I'm not sure why they did not come through the East River where they would have had at least a few places to hide if needs be. Most likely as others have suggested they wanted to make Bermuda by such and such. We will have to wait and see if more light can be shed on what they were thinking and why.
Thanks for the alert George.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
Ya know - not that I'm keeping track or anything...but why do all these rescue stories keep coming from the Easties?
 

·
.
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Ya know - not that I'm keeping track or anything...but why do all these rescue stories keep coming from the Easties?

I think mainly because of the allure of the Caribbean...many more sail down south to the caribbean (in the East), than on the West coast to Mexico.

Just what I thought
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,527 Posts
After reading this story and having time to thinking about it, I wonder if I have made a bad decisions. This past July a friend of mine ( an accomplished sailor ) and I sailed from Cutty Hunk Island in Buzzards Bay west to Newport Rhode Island. We knew a tropical storm was coming, 20 to 25 kt winds with gust of 40 + coming from the south west. Seas 8 to 10 ft swells from the south, 10 to 14 second intervals. We had one blow down at the first squall, recovered quickly and the rest of the trip was uneventful. Made good time and got quite wet.
I thought it was just another day at sea, or did I push my luck?
 

·
Glad I found Sailnet
Joined
·
3,842 Posts
...crews arrived at about 1 a.m., at the last position the EPIRB indicated, but because of the 30-40 knot winds, the sailboat was drifting out of position faster than the beacon could transmit. Visibility was less than one mile, and the seas were 8-12 feet.
The crew of the Moonshine shot off a flare, and the rescue crews located the disabled sailboat and determined no one was injured....
Didn't the rescue boats have radar?
 

·
1977 Morgan OI 30
Joined
·
438 Posts
Kid smart

I can imagine how that unraveled. Q ETOH "If we dress warm and sail south we can get out of this nasty winter weather, in few days it'l be warmer..."
I was speaking w my 10 yo grandson yesterday during a snowstorm. We were going to take a ride and see how the boat cover was holding up. I jokingly remarked about sailing south and he asked 'why anyone would ever go to sea while its snowing?'
When I use to deliver injured and imbibed patients to ER's I would point to a little 'Q ETOH' and that would alert the staff of likely complications. I would imagine either the crew of that sailboat were young and adventurous or Q ETOH, or both, I'll bet. Just my guess...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
This boat left our dock in East Greenwich, RI. mid day on Friday. I never met them, they appeared on our dock a month or so ago, hailing port is Brooklyn Maine. The young crew have been preparing this boat for a month or longer here. I never noticed a radar reflector, but just last week was fitted with a new dodger, and headsails and main appeared newly installed too, but the boat is old and tired looking. I'd question the standing rigging, but I do not know any details. The dock talk a month ago was that they were planning a trip to Bermuda shortly, we thought they were nuts! When I saw them Friday morning making last minute preparations ahead of the storm, and leaving shortly after noon, I thought they were incredibly stupid! I thought they had maybe enough time only to get as far as Dutch Island which is nestled between connanicut Island, and into it's lee, and wait it out there for a few days, of course this doesn't make any sense either, but they actually continued on and into the dark, into a storm....maybe they were on drugs, or suicidal?
 

·
Glad I found Sailnet
Joined
·
3,842 Posts
Q Etoh ??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,174 Posts
Also, there are many more people in the NE than in the NW. I'd guess more in NYC than in Washington and Oregon states combined. There are probably more people on LI than in Oregon. While SoCal has a large population, they don't have to go south for the winter, they're already there. I also think the North Atlantic in winter is very dangerous.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,491 Posts
Ya know - not that I'm keeping track or anything...but why do all these rescue stories keep coming from the Easties?
Because the West coast is a lee shore and boats aren't rescued there so much as beached?

The real reason probably has to do with the desire to get a boat to the BVIs or some other hot islands for Christmas without acknowledging the realities of December in the Northeast.
 
1 - 20 of 66 Posts
Top