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Old 01-11-2008, 09:34   #31
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If the CG did not sink Freefall it is probably still afloat. I only say that because the boat had a carbon rig, not aluminum. If it had an alloy rig the wave action of the rig banging against the hull would have eventually holed it, I don't think a carbon spar can. Just a guess on my part.

Maybe the rollover could have been avoided by fore reaching and picking the spots to cross the wave tops or maybe not, we'll never know. I can't imagine how ugly 50 knots would be against the Gulf Stream would be, shear walls of water 40 to 50 foot high. Awful.

It is a tragedy for the family and friends and it must weigh heavily on the Coast Guard. Very sad.
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Old 01-11-2008, 11:04   #32
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To me, this is a moral issue that, as I said, I've been mulling over and it is not my intent to criticize the crew of Freefall or the CG. I wasn't there and have, like everyone else, only secondhand info on this particular incident. I only ask because I was wondering what thoughts, if any, you all had on this issue. Incidentally, I am afraid I would debate the question with myself until it is too late to call anyone. I don't know.

Any thoughts? Does anyone know if she sunk?
I thought we did give our views on this tragedy. It may be just me, but it sounds like you think because the boat didn't sink, there shouldn't be a reason for a rescue? I have to point out that the boat was rolled at least once and it would be logical to think the crew could not prevent this from happening again.

In the end, this is the captains call. He made it, and no one can 2nd guess a man with 100,000 miles of blue water cruising and several solo Atlantic crossings. If he thought it was time to abandon ship... then it was time to abandon ship.

'The sea is a harsh mistress'. Sometimes your luck just runs out. If there is any criticism at all, it would be his decision to be in the Gulf Stream in a noreaster. Then again, that even assumes this was preventable.

There is always more to the story, and I'd withhold any judgement until all the facts are in.

Thank God for the United States Coast Guard and the brave men and women who risk their lives to save ours.
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Old 01-11-2008, 12:52   #33
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This is pure speculation, but a couple of points in the story suggest to me that the person who was lost in the initial rescue attempt may have had serious injuries due to the rollover, and that was why they called for the rescue.

This would certainly be a justifiable reason to abandon an otherwise still-floating vessel.
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Old 01-11-2008, 14:22   #34
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This link may be of interest to all:

Charleston, SC Latest Local News: Dramatic rescue of local sailor, friend came amid huge waves
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Old 01-11-2008, 15:29   #35
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I thought we did give our views on this tragedy. It may be just me, but it sounds like you think because the boat didn't sink, there shouldn't be a reason for a rescue? I have to point out that the boat was rolled at least once and it would be logical to think the crew could not prevent this from happening again.

In the end, this is the captains call. He made it, and no one can 2nd guess a man with 100,000 miles of blue water cruising and several solo Atlantic crossings. If he thought it was time to abandon ship... then it was time to abandon ship.
I don't recall criticizing anyone and only used Freefall as a topical example by which I could pose my question but, since you've mentioned it...

Firstly and not to be mean spirited here, I think he would top my list of people to second guess since this is his second time in as many years being rescued by the CG . His 100k miles notwithstanding. The best way to learn is by other peoples mistakes, the second best way is from your own. That's partly why people read these forums. Is it not? Secondly, of course it would be illogical to think the crew could do anything to prevent another rollover but there is no reason to think it wouldn't right itself again either is there? The question I posed was what would YOU do in a similar situation. One that is, where your boat had rolled and lost it's mast but, was still floating as this one clearly is in the video. That was all and I didn't/don't intend to be critical of any answers tendered either. My hope was only to see where my thoughts on the matter fell within a range of others.

Also, as far as the mast knocking a hole in her goes, as someone mentioned, It has always been my assumption than anyone going offshore would bring a set of cable cutters for just such an emergency. Has anyone on the forum ever been in a situation like this personally? I haven't so, I don't know. Could you use them if you had them? Maybe this has been touched on somewhere else. I'll have to search.
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Old 01-11-2008, 16:17   #36
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Does the captain of Freefall (Hogan) got that many miles of water sailing">blue water sailing? I don't believe he has been in the Ostar race across the Atlantic singlehandedly.........

I have NO experience with a boat in that much trouble so I won't second guess anyone and I won't be an armchair sailor on this one.....but would love to hear comments as, I agree, this is how we learn.
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Old 01-11-2008, 16:23   #37
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Maybe I should have qualified my question further by adding; ...or would you wait until the weather cleared abit and THEN call for help rather that asking the coasties to come get you in the middle of the worst of it thus perhaps, depending on your POV, unnecessarily risking their lives.

That would be more to the point I was headed.
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Old 01-11-2008, 16:23   #38
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The weather window

It will be interesting to see what the survivors say on this boat. Especially about the weather. At least we will get that information. I have good friends who were leaving for Bermuda at the same time from the same area -- they waited a day or two for the weather -- based on Herb's predictions.

You can see their blogspot and their concerns about that weather at
Caribbean Madness
They are now approaching Bermuda -- you can see their progress on the blog.

My point is this.

Weather is tricky business at best.

We brought our boat from South Dartmouth to Boston for the winter at the same time -- and even inshore a gale hammered us -- sinking boats at docks in the harbor. Our window looked pretty good, but the weather seemed to change hourly and was always opposite of what was predicted. We sailed into Boston Harbor with 20 knots NE, rather than the predicted 5 knots from the south.

I don't think that anyone intentionally puts themselves in harm's way.

Bob
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Old 01-11-2008, 17:13   #39
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The rig was most likely rod, maybe a -35, which can't be cut with cable cutters. Best bet is to drive out the pins or saw through the screws. No fun any time, maybe impossible, with horrific weather.

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Also, as far as the mast knocking a hole in her goes, as someone mentioned, It has always been my assumption than anyone going offshore would bring a set of cable cutters for just such an emergency. Has anyone on the forum ever been in a situation like this personally? I haven't so, I don't know. Could you use them if you had them? Maybe this has been touched on somewhere else. I'll have to search.
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Old 01-11-2008, 17:25   #40
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Friend of mine was out there in a Farr 50. He was only 25 m. offshore and hove-to in 60 kts. I've heard that three boats were lost. The Coast Guard had to leave one man in the water because they fouled the rescue basket and were low on fuel. When they returned, he was dead.
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Old 01-11-2008, 21:48   #41
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Im relatively new to sailing forums ...but there sure seems to be a lot of rescues latly ..is this normal levels?
USCG averages about one a day. It's been that way a very long time. Most don't have that much drama or that much publicity. Quite a few involve commercial boats. There is a lot of coastline to cover. They haul back more live ones than dead ones.

This one required a refuel stop by the helicopter on a cutter part way up the coast.
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Old 02-11-2008, 06:19   #42
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I was there

Hello, I cannot speak of anything official but it appears you all have valid concerns about what happened. Understand we all take our job very seriously. Never hesitate to call the Coast Guard, if we can we will come. And we will always do all we can as we did here. Thank you for your praise and I wish we could have been more sucessful we will NEVER leave anyone behind if there are options left. I'm glad they had an EPIRB, but please always have survival suits on board along with every other piece of safety gear you can think of. I've never witnessed seas that angry and it reminds me why I have no desire to spend much time out to sea. I am amazed that you have the courage to, amazing how diverse our interests as humans are. Thanks for reading.
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Old 02-11-2008, 06:49   #43
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Thank you for commenting EPIRB, thank you for going out and being ther for us. I hope you spend some time on this forum, we would all welcome it.

Joli

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Hello, I cannot speak of anything official but it appears you all have valid concerns about what happened. Understand we all take our job very seriously. Never hesitate to call the Coast Guard, if we can we will come. And we will always do all we can as we did here. Thank you for your praise and I wish we could have been more sucessful we will NEVER leave anyone behind if there are options left. I'm glad they had an EPIRB, but please always have survival suits on board along with every other piece of safety gear you can think of. I've never witnessed seas that angry and it reminds me why I have no desire to spend much time out to sea. I am amazed that you have the courage to, amazing how diverse our interests as humans are. Thanks for reading.
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Old 02-11-2008, 07:37   #44
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Thank you for commenting EPIRB, thank you for going out and being ther for us. I hope you spend some time on this forum, we would all welcome it.

Joli
I'm happy to second that. Thanks, EPIRB.
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Old 02-11-2008, 11:55   #45
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A big thanks

EPIRB

We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for a yeoman effort during this rescue. We cannot imagine the conditions out there and although we wish the outcome could have been different, we know everyone put forth an amazing effort.

God Bless you all,

Friends of Phil's!!
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