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Old 04-12-2009, 05:27   #16
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Its interesting that within the past few days there have been various accounts on this forum where they did appear to understand their mission, and saved some us from death

I hold them in the highest regard, in these troubled times.

so many projects--so little time !!
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:03   #17
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"About an hour into this, the Coast Guard arrived and sat about 150 yards away in their 48-ft patrol boat, watching the drama for another hour, but not offering any assistance,"
For what it's worth, from what I have been able to find, the nearest commercial towing station to Stillwater Cove is the Tow-BoatUS Station in Santa Cruise, about 30 sea miles or roughly 3 hours away. I find it unbelieveable that a 48' CG Patrol Boat does not carry a CG85 with which they can launch a messenger line upwards of 600'. Moreover, they could easily have come within 100' of the boat and still carried 2m of depth. One good tug and they could have plucked that boat off the rocks easily. Frankly, I doubt that there are any sailors, or few anyway, that would not have attempted to maneuver their yachts so as to be able get a line aboard that boat and give her a pluck if they possibly could. I have done it and other boats have stopped and done it for me when I have blundered into thin water. I find it astonishing that the USCG would not do the same thing under the circumstances--if for no reason other than to avoid a possible environmental incident due to the yacht's fuel, oil et al, being released into the sea (if the CG Boat's skipper needed a rationale for rendering assistence to say nothing of common courtesy to a fellow mariner).

Frankly, although I am a California native, I am glad that we are now in Florida as I know that we can count on our local Coast Guard boys ('n girls) here. I suspect there's something in the air there that has an adverse effect...

"It is not so much for its beauty that the Sea makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air, that emanation from the waves, that so wonderfully renews a weary spirit."
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:52   #18
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HyLyte so what you are saying is that the CG should risk damaging a million plus dollar vessel for a 60k vessel. seems to me that the CG responsibility what their original mission statement was to protect the coast and save lives in imminent danger. over the yrs as there were less threat to the coast they took on more of the civilian rescue roll, but their original mission statement hasn't changed from what i can see. also don't forget that they have been seriously underfunded for quite some time. so to me the blame should go to congress seeing as how they short funded them for so long. even under Homeland Security they still don't get the funding they used to . now that they are part of Homeland Security you will find they will respond less to non-commercial interests IE; recreational boaters unless there it is a matter of life and death.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:42   #19
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I'm with David on this one -- withholding judgment 'til I find out the rest of the story. No offense to L38, but that article was little more than an upset (quite understandably) owner ranting about what he thought should have happened.

I'll not crucify any Coasties based on one emotional account.
"Life moves pretty fast. You don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."
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Old 04-12-2009, 08:06   #20
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Originally Posted by svHyLyte View Post
From the pages of Latitude 38:

The above is at Stillwater Cove in Carmel, Ca, just around the Penninsula from Monteray, an event that took place with a USCG Boat standing-by, looking on, while the yacht foundered without offering either aid or assistance. The entire story is posted at Latitude 38 - The West's Premier Sailing & Marine Magazine . I encourage all you folks on the West Coast of the US to send a strongly worded letter/email to the Commander of the 11th Coast Guard district about this event which, in my view, is inexcusable.

s/v HyLyte
Sounds to me like a case of inexperience and panic on the part of the skipper:

The "mooring" he attempted to tie up to when the windless jamed was probably a private marker noting the reef (as would their chart have noted if it had been used).

He ran aground on a flood tide, yet apparently did not put out a kedge anchor--in fact he didn't seem to know how to get his boat off the reef.

He allowed his boat to be pushed deeper onto the reef and eventually destroyed the keel.

And the skipper points to the CG for blame. In Florida the CG will not tow vessels. That's the job of TowBoat US or another towing service.

Such a waste.
"The lookout that first sights the cat shall have ten guineas and remission of sins, short of mutiny, sodomy, or damaging the paintwork." - Jack Aubrey
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Old 04-12-2009, 08:40   #21
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While sailing south from the Bay Area last September we bypassed a planned stop at Stillwater Cove as the latest info showed it to have lots of kelp as well as the reef. Unfortunate set of circumstances for JoJo.
As an aside story of the Coast Guard, we were anchored over Thanksgiving in a small near-horshoe-shaped cove at Santa Cruz Island with another sailboat. Also a Proline 20-foot power boat with four guys, two dads and sons came in and anchored. We had noticed their camp gear on the beach earlier. They paddled ashore on a couple of surf boards. Wetsuits or not we thought it pretty basic “yachting”. After dinner and dark we were jolted by calls then loud knocks on our hull. One of the Proline guys on his surfboard asked if we had seen their anchored boat – it was gone! Glancing around the anchorage we confirmed the shock, their boat had disappeared! He asked that we contact Vessel Assist so I called on channel 16 and Coast Guard San Diego dispatched a 47-foot cutter and a helocopter. Long story short, the cutter found the Proline adrift at sea, "the bow line chaffed about 10-feet off the bow" but did not take it in tow but brought one of the guys out to retrieve it and his marooned mariners. The chopper meanwhile, with spotlight blazing, kept watch of those on shore. Seems they lucked out by their boat missing the rocks and getting found.
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Old 04-12-2009, 09:46   #22
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We anchored in Stillwater Cove on the way to Mexico in '93. It's small and the bottom is patches of open sand with lots of kelp. It took a couple of times to get a good hook.
It's not an anchorage for newbs.

What was the weather like at the time of this foundering?
Memento,homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris.
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Old 04-12-2009, 10:03   #23
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I think some of the more senior Coasties could write an interesting book on some of the mishaps they see...from their perspective. I would imagine it would be entertaining reading, funny at times, sad at other times and pretty educational for all recreational boaters.


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