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Old 24-07-2014, 08:43   #61
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

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My hats off to the OP for posting the videos and well done on evacuating successfully.
+1
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Old 24-07-2014, 08:44   #62
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

No criticism or second guessing here, just mental exercise and speculation on whether or not with special tools or resources if there would have been any way even theoretically, to save the boat.

Assume the new rudder post was glass like the previous. Would it have been possible, with the appropriate tool like maybe a big angle grinder, to cut away the rudder and let it drop out, stop the damage plug the hole to keep the boat afloat until you could rig some kind of emergency steering? The way the thing was moving around the risk of serious injury could have prevented this option.

How fast was the water coming in? Would a serious emergency bilge pump been able to keep up with it? What pumping capacity did you have on board?

From the video it was obvious that the rudder post and quadrant were doing a lot of damage to the boat. How far along was the damage when you took the video? Was that in the early stages and the damage got much worse?

Thanks again for opening this discussion.
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Old 24-07-2014, 08:48   #63
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

skip, would you stick your arms in there and try to cut that rudder post? I know I wouldn't.

Edit: I think we have learned all we ever can from this unfortunate incident. I am so glad that Lisa and Len posted those videos so that we could learn.
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Old 24-07-2014, 08:57   #64
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

Go back to the beginning.. He was standing in knee deep water when he got in the life raft.

I'm visualizing this as happening fast.. Like 20 min and the water was waist deep in the cabin.

Anyone trained or experienced will have a list (either mental or written) of escalations for an emergency. I think that boat was at the point of "Emergency measures to save all souls onboard". The goal at that point is to use the time to execute that plan as safely and completely as possible..

The skipper did a fantastic job..

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Old 24-07-2014, 09:03   #65
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

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Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
Edit: I think we have learned all we ever can from this unfortunate incident. I am so glad that Lisa and Len posted those videos so that we could learn.
From this specific accident, maybe so, but I'm gonna bet lunch that we are going to find out that this design is lacking in strength / structure in this area of the hull, and there may be some benefit in a discussion of what if anything could be done to keep a boat with similar type of damage afloat.
I think a water tight bulkhead has the best chance of success, my opinion is that even a large pump may have kept up for awhile, but that much movement of the rudder post meant that soon that entire section of hull would tear out of the hull, and then you would have a very large hole of course.

The video speaks volumes, it's hard to argue with a video.

Bet Beneteau doesn't like that video, I know I wouldn't if I were them.
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:04   #66
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

This "armchair critics" tune hurts my ears. Many of such armchair this or armchair that lines on CF these days.

For we can equally talk of armchair sailors who venture off with inadequate skill levels and then they sink their boats and push the buttons.

Perhaps there should be a separate forum for people who see all the less experienced, but nonetheless EQUALLY entitled members, as superior.

Doh. It would not be a forum then, it would be a club.

;-)
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:12   #67
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

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Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
skip, would you stick your arms in there and try to cut that rudder post? I know I wouldn't.
Well it is often hard to tell exactly how things are from photos and videos but from what I could see, no way.

Just part of the learning process for me. Anytime I encounter a failure mode that could sink a boat I want to evaluate the potential for a similar occurrence on other boats (especially my boat ) and try to figure out if there is any possible solution so I can be prepared.

Sometimes shirt happens and there's nothing that can be done but I generally don't like to admit that.
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:21   #68
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
This "armchair critics" tune hurts my ears. Many of such armchair this or armchair that lines on CF these days.

For we can equally talk of armchair sailors who venture off with inadequate skill levels and then they sink their boats and push the buttons.

Perhaps there should be a separate forum for people who see all the less experienced, but nonetheless EQUALLY entitled members, as superior.

Doh. It would not be a forum then, it would be a club.

;-)
b.

I get the club reference, but not the armchair one as it relates here.
Will you elaborate?
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:34   #69
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

I'll chip in and say it is wonderful that you got back OK. The USCG are a great asset to anyone who is in distress at sea, but also on land where they manage to save a lot of folks who get in to danger on land. Having a ship come help shows how much all who go to sea understand that it can be a dangerous place and it might be them who need assistance some time.

I am amazed that you were calm enough and had time enough to video the water and rudder post. And at night. A true blue nightmare. You must have done a lot of things right to make it through that.

Of course any boat can have hidden flaws, either from design and original construction, or from suspect repairs. Or accidents happen such as groundings or hitting other objects (such as whales). There was a loner Orca on the west side of Vancouver Island that terrorized local boats by nudging them and even pushed one sailboat almost up on a dock they were trying to hook up to to escape. I don't know how much damage they had aside from the scraped gelcoat and paint. We saw them that same day and saw the damage.

Good luck pursuing this with Oceanis but I suspect you will never get it resolved or understood from them. Ditto with the previous owners and/or boatyards but you may find someone who knows something and will discuss it. But of course that may make you feel better but probably won't get you anything and certainly won't get your boat back. I do hope you will still be able to think about another boat and travels but its totally understandable if you don't.
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:50   #70
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

Bluewaters,

If you had to guess what was the total elapsed time from initial water ingress to sinking?

I'm trying to imagine if I was in a similar circumstance what plans would I want to have in place to act accordingly and appropriately.

I'm sure it is difficult for you to keep rehashing all of this but there is a lot that can be learned and copied from your escape plan. Again kudos to you for doing what you did in the situation you had.
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:51   #71
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

Thank you for posting this. All the crew did a great job especially the skipper
The chances of survival in this sort of situation are not high.

Also, the best excuse for getting out of doing the dishes I have seen

Can anyone with the same, of similar model Beneteau post a picture of what the rudder support looks like?

As a side issue the rudder on a monohull is generally quite close to waterline and a cofferdam around the rudder is worth considering. It often does not need to be very high. I suspect it could be retrofitted in some boats. As well as these sort of emergency situations it makes it possible to repair the rudder or bearings without hauling out in parts of the world where there are no facilities.
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Old 24-07-2014, 09:54   #72
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Re: The Blue Pearl sinking

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
Bluewaters,
The only thing that could cause the rudder quadrant to gyrate is that the lower rudder tube was somehow destroyed. Without structure around the lower rudder shaft, the rudder has no lateral support. This is also why you were taking on water. I am not familiar with the underbody of your boat, but it must have suffered considerable trauma or the failure of a previously unknown repair. My condolences to you on the loss of your boat and hopes for a quick return to the sea. Respectfully, Rognvald
We have a friend that had the same thing happen to the same year Bene... I think same size as well. The tube basically came unravelled. I saw some pics of the tube and it was crazy. At this point, I think anyone with that particular bene should be looking very carefully at their tubes.
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Old 24-07-2014, 10:36   #73
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

Sorry for your loss Bluewaters, i cant imagine the feelings to see the boat sinking, very sad...

Someone ask for a picture of the OC rudder top bearing setup.
Here is one from a OC 43 , no idea if is the same as the OC50.
I make some opinions in the previous topic about the sinking based in the rudder setup for the Bene 50 not the Oceanis version , and i see they are diferent, in the 50 the top rudder bearing rest in a opening at the top deck level, more robust because all the top loads are spread in the deck , down below there is no quadrant , just a masive aluminium arm linked with a bar to the rudder gear, the rudder post ist the same as the OC 50, a Fg tube glased in the bottom, again the loads are at the top and in the bottom bearings , but with the diference that the the top bearing is fitted in the deck level, no ply tabed to the interior like the 43 or the 50 OC.

I suspect your boat hide a previous damage from PO in a collision with a submerged object , this and maybe a faulty tabbing at the bulkhead or lack of strenght in the bulkhead combined without rudder tube lateral supports, something i dont understand, its cheap and allow the tube to have better lateral strenght , im sum .... to me its a faulty design and a recipe for troubles....

You do the right thing, liferaft , epirb in order and in time, i just have a question, a tricky one, looking at the video , i guess you have a deck opening to fit a emergency rudder tube , i wonder if in that case , trying to fit the rudder emergency tiller can block the rudder post and stop the movement?? well thats all, thx for posting the video...
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Old 24-07-2014, 12:55   #74
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

Bluewaters,
My highest commendations to you and your mates for the professional and cool-headed response to the catastrophic failure of your vessel. I have watched the video a few times and it is now obvious to me that the white shelf that supported your upper rudder shaft/bearing lost its tabbing(probably on the port and starboard hull)which allowed the rudder shaft to gyrate uncontrollably under the tremendous lateral forces created underwater on the rudder blade. You can even see in the video where the lower rudder tube has separated from the hull allowing the ingress of water. To anyone who has ever worked structurally on a boat, there would have been NO POSSIBLE WAY to have jury rigged a failed hull that was being twisted and distorted by the force of the rudder-- especially in those extremely cramped and quickly flooding quarters. Your ultimate response was appropriate with no other viable option. It would be interesting to know if the rudder tube itself was supported properly underneath the white shelf(unseen) or if the shelf was the only structural member that gave "integrity" to the installation. Perhaps members of the Forum who own such a vessel or who have worked on them could provide detailed information. My educated guess, at this point ,is that after the first loss of your rudder there was structural damage to the support mechanism of your steering system which ultimately led to total failure of your second rudder once in heavy seas. And, for the naysayers, I can assure you that a majority of those on this Forum have never even seen their steering apparatus let alone serviced it themselves or inspected it for flaws/problems. The blocks that control the sheave wire(as someone inquired earlier) would be unseen as they are usually located under the helm/pedestal and once the hole opened in the hull, they would have become loosened and jumped the quadrant rendering your steering inoperable. If it were me that experienced your unfortunate tragedy, I would feel no self doubt that I acted with experience, resolve and professionalism in a untenable position. If there is a lesson to be learned it is that whenever possible we must become more intimately aware of our boats and the systems that provide our safety and security and that the term "professional" when it applies to those who repair boats should be questioned and verified when we commit our boats to the open sea. Good luck, good future sailing and congratulations on a job well done.
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Old 24-07-2014, 14:47   #75
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Re: The Blue Pearl Sinking

This is really strong tobacco. Thanks for sharing this experience. I guess all the readers here will check theres boat carefully now. I hope you have a friend you're able to talke about the law and insurance issues. I would carefully check them. Maybe you got betrayed?
I's trabt once in a heavy storm in the Gulf of Thailand. January 2009. I thought I will not survive it. 6-7m waves in strong up wind. Gradually night. 4-5 hours in that storm. Filling the boat with vomit of 200 Ferry Travelers. At the end 3 deaths, collapsed. Can I honestly say "damn this captain?" It supposed to be only a 3 hour trip, not really a bluewater cruising. He knew the weather conditions already before starting.

Your situation of course is something very different.
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