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Old 03-12-2007, 18:31   #16
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Originally Posted by TaoJones View Post
I've taken the liberty of condensing your post so that I might ask what seems to me to be a rather obvious question, Kanani; i.e. Does anyone else think that those who first found the drifting vessel, pumped her out, cleaned her bottom, towed her to the island's lee, stripped her and set her adrift might just be the same fisherman and his son who "later" found her and towed her in to safe anchorage before reporting their discovery so they could claim another windfall from a grateful owner?

Am I too suspicious?

TaoJones
VERRRRYYYY suspicious hmmmmmmm!!!!!!!
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Old 03-12-2007, 18:33   #17
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The USCG badgered him into abandoning that boat...
Reminiscent of a similar situation involving a Westsail 32 as described in "The Perfect Storm" by Junger. If I recall correctly, in that case the skipper was ordered off the boat by the Coast Guard. Looking at it from the coasties point of view, I imagine once they have been called to the scene at sea they don't want to leave empty handed if there is a chance they will get called back again, which is very understandable. I suppose the moral is, think hard before you call for help.

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Old 03-12-2007, 18:55   #18
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Reminiscent of a similar situation involving a Westsail 32 as described in "The Perfect Storm" by Junger. If I recall correctly, in that case the skipper was ordered off the boat by the Coast Guard. Looking at it from the coasties point of view, I imagine once they have been called to the scene at sea they don't want to leave empty handed if there is a chance they will get called back again, which is very understandable. I suppose the moral is, think hard before you call for help.

Mike
My point exactly.

Here is a copy of an email that I got from Walter's wife, the day before he abandoned ship:
---------------Thu 12/01/05 8:08 AM----------------
Walter is fine though I'm sure he's exhausted. Last night about 8 pm I got
a ship-to-shore phone call from a german commercial vessel. The captain
told me that he had assisted Walter who was having engine problems off the
coast of Costa Rica. So Walter was unable to go straight to Panama as
planned. I was told he is going into Banana Boat Marina for repairs. The
captain assured me that Walter is fine. But I WOULD APPRECIATE YOUR PRAYERS
THAT HE GET THE ASSISTANCE HE NEEDS AND REST. This marina has somewhat of a
reputation for gouging boaters...so let's pray we do not get skinned alive!

I'LL LET YOU KNOW AS SOON AS I HEAR FROM WALTER!
----------------end--------------

This was the next email that I recieved as I was leaving for the airport to fly to Costa Rica:
----------------Fri, 02 Dec 2005 03:52:15 -----------------
Walter
called me Thurs at 11pm (ohio time) from aboard the comercial vessel called Northern Divinity. After being adrift for 3 days about 100 miles off Costa Rica, having engine problems and having he mainsail inoperative, he was able to raise a comercial vessel called Liwia on the VHF radio. The captain of that ship gave him oil and called me on his sat phone(wed 8 pm), saying that Walter was fine but having engine problems and was headed into Banana Bay Marina for repairs. Thurs 7 pm the USCG caled me saying that a ship named Northern Divinity picked up a call for help from Chatondefoi. They offered to pick him up. USCG urged him four times to abandon ship--he declined.
Thurs 10:45 pm 2nd call from USCG telling me Waltre was safely aboard the Northern Divinity and en route to Korea their next port of call, scheduled Dec 17th. Thurs 11 pm Walter called from the commercal vessel's phone,
devastated and sobbing apologies. We lost our home and everything in it.
Which bringsinto sharp focus the reality that everything in this life is
indeed temporary.
------------------end

I had the actual note that was passed to the skipper of the Divinity but I can't find it. All Walter was asking for was for someone to come out and tow him in. Little did he know, I was on my way down there to arrange just that.......what a tragedy that was.
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Old 03-12-2007, 19:38   #19
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why was the USCG in international waters off of Costa Rica?
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Old 03-12-2007, 19:47   #20
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why was the USCG in international waters off of Costa Rica?
The USCG has C31s and other fixed wing aircraft are cruising the West Coast all the time. The Capt'n of the Divinity reported a vessel in distress (unwarranted) to the USCG and they were there in a few hours.

Actually, what he reported was that there was a US documented vessel with no means of power, requesting assistance. This was true. However, once a breeze picked up, he would have had power. The USCG told him that there was an impending storm heading his way (untrue) and that he may never see another ship again if he missed this ride (also rediculous). He was 100 miles off shore in one of the most heavily trafficed areas of the world.
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Old 03-12-2007, 19:56   #21
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Crusingcat, it's really an old concept. Have you ever heard of fire?

Dumbass!
Yes I have heard of fire. Ever tried to burn Duflex? No? Have a try one day.

Then you might try getting a lead sinker to float.
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Old 04-12-2007, 04:41   #22
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Originally Posted by mikereed100 View Post
...If I recall correctly, in that case the skipper was ordered off the boat by the Coast Guard. Looking at it from the coasties point of view, I imagine once they have been called to the scene at sea they don't want to leave empty handed if there is a chance they will get called back again, which is very understandable...
Mike
The Coast Guard will never order anyone off a boat (for rescue); but will insist that if anyone accepts rescue, all do.
The principle is that the boat and crew are either in serious distress & danger, or not.
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Old 04-12-2007, 04:59   #23
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Yes I have heard of fire. Ever tried to burn Duflex? No? Have a try one day.

Then you might try getting a lead sinker to float.
Ever hear of steel boats burning? A boat is more then just one material.

Your obviously not prepared.
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Old 04-12-2007, 05:13   #24
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Originally Posted by Kanani View Post
The USCG told him that there was an impending storm heading his way (untrue) and that he may never see another ship again if he missed this ride (also rediculous)
you makes your own decisions and then stand by them. to his credit Walter did decline several times before actually doing it. it sounds like he only needed a tow but was exhausted and unable to do the right thing which was stay with his ship. guess he didn't have insurance?
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Old 04-12-2007, 10:52   #25
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The Coast Guard will never order anyone off a boat (for rescue); but will insist that if anyone accepts rescue, all do.
The principle is that the boat and crew are either in serious distress & danger, or not.
Not exactly true. Every circumstance is different. I have heard of many injured or sick people being removed from a vessel and the rest of the crew staying on.

The USCG is not going to force anyone off of a vessel at any time. It is always the skippers choice to leave. However, the coasties are trained how to pursuade an individual to abandon a "Risky" situation. They will threaten the skipper with, "We won't risk coming back after you. It's your choice, leave now or never. You may die out here............blah-blah-blah".

I'm not saying that this is wrong in many cases. Surely, if the vessel is in iniment danger, it is only prudent to pursue this tactic. However, in this case, the vesel was NOT in iniment danger and he did not call for a rescue. Her engine was full of sea water from a broken oil cooler and the main halyard was up the mast.....BIG FREAKING DEAL........it's a sailboat.

Lets say that there was a storm coming, (there wasn't). They had no business advising him to abandon ship. Their statement was, "This is your last chance, you may never see another vessel along this route again".

He was only 100 miles off shore with 90 days provisions, in a heavily trafficed seaway. IMHO, it was just wrong to advise him to abandon that boat. I even called the CG and told them that I was on my way down to arrange for a tow for him. In reality, I planned on renting a boat and going out and helping him (even if I had to hire a helicopter as a spotter). We had his position and approx drift.

Walter's biggest failing was that he is not real savy with engines. He didn't realize, at the time, why his engine kept filling with water. All he had to do is by-pass the oil cooler, dump the engine's oil/water from the pan and fill it with fresh oil.

That is why I say that mechanical aptitude is one of the "MUST HAVE'S" for a cruising sailor.

He knows all about his engine now. Hard way to learn
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Old 04-12-2007, 14:20   #26
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Ever hear of steel boats burning? A boat is more then just one material.

Your obviously not prepared.
The steel doesn't burn. It's all the crap the boat has to be lined with that burns. Duflex just gets painted on the inside. I am using an epoxy paint that is also flame retardant. The fuel tanks are mounted above the waterline in self draining lockers. Any fuel leak will go directly overboard, and not end up sloshing around in the bilges. (In fact the boat doesn't have bilges)

The entire electrical system will be protected by circuit breakers.

The propane system will have sniffers, a solenoid shut-off, and a gasfuse.

So the boat can't sink, and is extremely unlikely to catch fire.

However we will be carrying a decent dinghy, probably a 10' RIB.

In my opinion, at least as many people get killed by abandoning a still floating boat for a life-raft as actually get saved by them.

The fact is, you don't even know for sure that your life raft will inflate when you need it to.
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Old 04-12-2007, 14:23   #27
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The steel doesn't burn. It's all the crap the boat has to be lined with that burns. Duflex just gets painted on the inside. I am using an epoxy paint that is also flame retardant. The fuel tanks are mounted above the waterline in self draining lockers. Any fuel leak will go directly overboard, and not end up sloshing around in the bilges. (In fact the boat doesn't have bilges)

The entire electrical system will be protected by circuit breakers.

The propane system will have sniffers, a solenoid shut-off, and a gasfuse.

So the boat can't sink, and is extremely unlikely to catch fire.

However we will be carrying a decent dinghy, probably a 10' RIB.
Am I missing something here???? What the hell are you talking about?
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Old 04-12-2007, 14:30   #28
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Am I missing something here???? What the hell are you talking about?
Probably best to just ignore those two, they enjoy hammering away at each other and it spills over into other threads now and then. They are both tenacious individuals, something like what your friend must be to have done what he did with that boat. Pretty damn impressive job he did I think.
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Old 04-12-2007, 14:31   #29
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Joli reckons a boat without a life raft is unseaworthy. But then he says all multihulls are unseaworthy anyway. Who cares.
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Old 04-12-2007, 18:01   #30
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Lets say that there was a storm coming, (there wasn't). They had no business advising him to abandon ship. Their statement was, "This is your last chance, you may never see another vessel along this route again".

He was only 100 miles off shore with 90 days provisions, in a heavily trafficed seaway. IMHO, it was just wrong to advise him to abandon that boat. I even called the CG and told them that I was on my way down to arrange for a tow for him. In reality, I planned on renting a boat and going out and helping him (even if I had to hire a helicopter as a spotter). We had his position and approx drift.

Forget the advice he was getting from the coasties. Even though he was tired, he was the skipper. It was his choice and IMO a bad one.

The boat wasn't sinking he had plenty of provisions and with plenty of time on his hands there is lot's he could have done first.

Even if he was told there was a storm coming, he should have known about the weather from his own independent sources.

I also agree that he should have had better knowledge of his boat and systems.

Expensive lesson.
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