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Old 14-11-2014, 11:19   #1
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Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

I just saw this come across "the wire".

Missing sailor found adrift, but alive in Gulf

Apparently, the battery in this mans boat died and so he couldn't recharge his cell phone. I don't know anymore details.
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Old 14-11-2014, 12:02   #2
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

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Originally Posted by crazyoldboatguy View Post
I just saw this come across "the wire".

Missing sailor found adrift, but alive in Gulf

Apparently, the battery in this mans boat died and so he couldn't recharge his cell phone. I don't know anymore details.
Guess I'll go first. I would be curious to know if he had a portable VHF and whether it was still working when the battery (or batteries?) went dead. Were his sails also disabled or was he merely waiting safely offshore until a tow in could be mustered? Not expecting OP to have these answers of course.
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Old 14-11-2014, 12:08   #3
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

Apearantly his cellphone did finally ring which is what led them to find his position by asking the telephone company? Seems a bit odd... Terrible reporting for sure. Should leave so many questions.
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Old 14-11-2014, 13:04   #4
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

As many here urge strongly, redundancy is the key. But, we still don't have much info. They mention "battery", for instance. I wouldn't assume flatlander reporters to automatically know if the boat had more than one battery. I would think a boat of 32' would at least have one starter and one house battery. A solar charger could pump up the battery over a few days - hell, they even sell solar chargers that will recharge a cell phone battery.

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Old 14-11-2014, 13:20   #5
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

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As many here urge strongly, redundancy is the key. But, we still don't have much info. They mention "battery", for instance. I wouldn't assume flatlander reporters to automatically know if the boat had more than one battery. I would think a boat of 32' would at least have one starter and one house battery. A solar charger could pump up the battery over a few days - hell, they even sell solar chargers that will recharge a cell phone battery.

Right but this article states his battery and phone was dead but the phone company tracked him by his phone which was ringing which makes no sense..
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Old 14-11-2014, 13:24   #6
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

Yes, the article makes no sense and the whole issue makes no sense. With a happy ending the news folks will move on so we may never know.
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Old 14-11-2014, 13:36   #7
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Re: sailor reported lost found in Gulf of Mexico adrift

Oddly, just the other day, we had our start battery fail about 1/2 hr. after starting the engine to warm it up for an oil change. Otherwise, I wouldn't have been able to believe in sudden battery failure, usually there are warning signs before they totally c--p out.

So, maybe this guy's battery bank did fail suddenly, or maybe he didn't recognize the warning signs.

Maybe he was "adrift" because there was insufficient air to move the boat.

Maybe the phone co can pulse the phone for its position, even when it is turned off?

Curious, and you're right, this is unlikely to be a question answered here.

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Old 14-11-2014, 14:16   #8
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

Yes, that is strange - I have never known a battery to just quit. But, knowing you from reading so many posts I would assume you had other backup power sources of some sort. And the pinging a cell phone if it is off - I have not heard of that.

Curiouser and curiouser.
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Old 14-11-2014, 14:26   #9
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

Boggles the mind nobody takes an EPIRB with them. Currents in the Gulf are pretty strong. Anyway, glad he's ok. Couple hundred bucks could have saved the taxpayers a couple hundred thousand dollars.


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Old 14-11-2014, 14:40   #10
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

Guy is 77 yrs old, family reacted when they couldn't reach him over a few days, I believe the cell phone was on, and working, just out of range of the towers, I think he was "pinged" when within range and and the CG or I'm not sure who went out the 6 miles in good weather to check on him, I think he accepted a tow.
I feel sure little if any money was spent and he wasn't in any danger, so he may well have an EPIRB and VHF. But I think he was offered a tow and took it.
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Old 14-11-2014, 14:52   #11
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

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Boggles the mind nobody takes an EPIRB with them. Currents in the Gulf are pretty strong. Anyway, glad he's ok. Couple hundred bucks could have saved the taxpayers a couple hundred thousand dollars.
I'm sure some Coasties on here can confirm or deny this but I recall reading or hearing somewhere that for the most part, "routine" search and rescue operations pose little to no additional cost on the taxpayer. The theory is that the same assets and manpower would still be operating in a training and readiness capacity (which mirrors real world scenarios) absent of a mission. Rescue missions simply replace scheduled training or patrolling for a net sum of zero in resources used. This of course does not apply to abnormal circumstances beyond the normal operational scope of a given CG unit or asset.
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:06   #12
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

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Yes, that is strange - I have never known a battery to just quit. But, knowing you from reading so many posts I would assume you had other backup power sources of some sort. And the pinging a cell phone if it is off - I have not heard of that.

Curiouser and curiouser.
I have had two batteries go with no warning at all in the last 5 years. Both had sudden and catastrophic internal shorts.
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:10   #13
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

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..."routine" search and rescue operations pose little to no additional cost on the taxpayer. The theory is that the same assets and manpower would still be operating in a training and readiness capacity (which mirrors real world scenarios) absent of a mission. Rescue missions simply replace scheduled training or patrolling for a net sum of zero in resources used...
You have a very creative way of looking at this.

ALL the money spent to provide trained and ready search and rescue assets and manpower is what it cost to make those rescues. This isn't money that no one needed, and was going to be thrown away, anyway. This is what it cost for those rescues that were actually made.
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:27   #14
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

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You have a very creative way of looking at this.

ALL the money spent to provide trained and ready search and rescue assets and manpower is what it cost to make those rescues. This isn't money that no one needed, and was going to be thrown away, anyway. This is what it cost for those rescues that were actually made.
I get what you're saying and I think we are approaching this from two different angles; me from a budgetary perspective and you from an economic one. You are right that the need for standing rescue assets dictates a sunk cost to taxpayers (whether they go on one mission or fifty) and that a lesser need should translate to a lesser cost in mission readiness.

What I am alluding to is (if what I am recalling is correct) that routine missions have very little effect on the already existing cost of having those assets in place; certainly not to the tune of several hundred thousand dollars. Because that $$$ would otherwise be going out the door in terms of training/patrol costs.
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:46   #15
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Re: Sailor Reported Lost Found In Gulf Of Mexico Adrift

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...that $$$ would otherwise be going out the door in terms of training/patrol costs.
This is how we fool ourselves.
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