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Old 09-08-2015, 22:25   #1
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NTSB Report on Baaden

You remember the $10 million yacht that tipped over right after being christened? Here's the report.

Hard to believe a mistake like this could be made. Skip to page 15 if you don't want to read the whole report.

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Old 10-08-2015, 07:09   #2
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Re: NTSB Report on Baaden

Thank you very much for that! I had been wondering what the cause was.

Interestingly enough, it seems it would have capsized no matter how they launched it.

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Old 10-08-2015, 07:32   #3
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Re: NTSB Report on Baaden

From the report:

Probable Cause
The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the
capsizing of the yacht Baaden during its initial launch was the vesselís low margin of stability due to the combined effects of a recording error during the final vessel weigh,
which resulted in an incorrect assessment of the vesselís center of gravity, and an
overestimation of the weight of installed ballast.
It surprises me that the PC statement does not mention the dolly going off the side of the ramp since that seems to be the first link in the accident. This makes me wonder if they think the boat was so unstable that it was not going to stay upright even if the ramp mishap had not occurred? From the graph, it does seems like a slight wind gust could have knocked the boat down with the as launched ballast.

We were in Anacortes when the accident happened. We were eating dinner with a group of people, one of whom was late because he was watching the launch. He showed up and said the launch was delayed but he was going back to watch them finish. After dinner he went back to the launch and we walked back to our hotel which was a couple blocks from the marina. I think we were walking by when the boat capsized. We did not know about the accident until we got home since the next day we were traveling. Thankfully no one died but it was still a horrible accident given the lost dream and so many people put out of work.

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Old 10-08-2015, 07:55   #4
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Re: NTSB Report on Baaden

The lack of technical oversight, and the musical chairs dynamic of the builder's design and construction personnel, certainly didn't help.

Why the buyer's on-site rep was dismissed wasn't explained. I wonder if the Insurance Company had any inspections of the vessel as payments were made to the builder?

Some of the issues seem typical to a small business, but the Builder Owner/Engineer seems to carry the most blame. It was his company to run. Unfortunate that he became ill, but there should have been provision to maintain continuity.

A comedy of errors, except there was nothing funny about this. Fortunate there were no deaths.
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Old 10-08-2015, 08:50   #5
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Re: NTSB Report on Baaden

I've seen plenty of videos where the launch seems to be a little cheesy. I think of all the work that went into Baaden in the 3 years it took to build, and it really is sad. With all the mistakes that were made, possibly some bow restraints would have saved it. I've seen all kinds of videos of launches that went bad. I don't know what they're thinking, maybe low on money at that point to do it right.
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