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Old 14-08-2010, 17:58   #1
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Lightning and Fire

Today while my boat was in the marina it got hit by lightening. There were about 10 witnesses and the were a lot of lightening strike nearby. It missed all the other boats, despite them having bigger masts. It hit mine and from there was so strong it spread out and re-hit other parts of the boat and even buildings in the marina.

The sail and sail bag caught fire. The harbour master put it out with a fire extinguisher.

I arrived about an hour later. Sections of the stainless on the cockpit were still very very hot, while just a foot away was cold as usual. Both charge controllers were still very hot. Most of my electronics are toast, and so is the sail and bag.

I have insurance, but now Im reading and it says for example:

The Scheduled Vessel shall be valued at the agreed valuation shown on the declaration page on any endorsement thereto issued by us. However the following items are subject to payment on the basis of depreciated cash value less the applicable deductible. Depreciated cash value
means replacement cost less the annual percentage factor of depreciation shown as follows;
...
iii) Sails, standing and running rigging - 12.5% per annum.
...
However in no event shall the depreciated value be less than 20% of the replacement cost.

My sails were original (2001) but in very good shape and not in need of any replacement any time soon. So does this mean they will pay only 20% for the sail and even remove the deductible from that? So I'm likely to get reimbursed $0 for my sail?
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Old 14-08-2010, 19:34   #2
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Unfortunately, that's what it says unless there is a separate section on act of god, lightning etc.

Sorry for your strike.

PS - You will definitely get a lot of sympathy here but for the right answers on what is covered I think you should be talking to your agent.
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Old 14-08-2010, 19:43   #3
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Already sent an email.. but its the weekend.... Was hoping to get any insight until then. There is a mention of lightening, but not in a way that would override this.

Electronics are -10% per year too... So if my damages are $20,000, 20% is $4000, my deductible is $3000... I get $1000 towards $20,000 of stuff to fix
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Old 14-08-2010, 19:58   #4
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Ouch - That totally sucks. I hope the insurance company is in a good mood on Monday.
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Old 14-08-2010, 20:18   #5
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There are several recent threads on lightening strikes that give good advice on what needs to be checked on your boat (everything) including haul out. Worth reading through them if you haven't already done that.
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Old 14-08-2010, 20:22   #6
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Yep.. already read them. What really sucks is that it was scheduled for haul out in a couple weeks. but only AFTER it left for St Martin tomorrow to go get parts etc.... but now it cant leave.... So hoping we can sail it on the genoa and engines to St Martin next week to at least get parts before it gets out of the water.... kind of hard to paint it without paint... and even harder to paint it in the water!
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Old 14-08-2010, 21:06   #7
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Wishing you the best as you try to untangle the aftermath on the boat & with ins. com.

Just curious, where were you docked when the boat was hit?
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Old 14-08-2010, 21:59   #8
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Port Zante Marina in St Kitts. Will be interesting to see what the insurance company does as there are no licensed surveyors here.....
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Old 14-08-2010, 22:31   #9
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PZM - stopped there last June for water & ice plus check-out at nearby cruise ship customs office.
Hopefully some good rest, the insurance policy will reveal some relief and good window to get you to SXM to begin inspection & repairs. All the best.
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Old 14-08-2010, 23:48   #10
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I'm in St. MArtin and heading down island. Maybe I can arrange to bring what you need or have it shipped for you?
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Old 15-08-2010, 01:32   #11
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That would be fantastic, but we might have to exchange goods in Statia. If I bring it in I wont pay tax on it (55% on most boat items) because its part of my boat. But if you bring it to St Kitts, we cannot legally exchange it here... Statia is really close and I think we can float it to there. We have a Genoa, and both engines are running (one console is dead now, but the engine runs)

When are you headed down? I've got a guy who will do a basic inspection tomorrow and Monday I'll contact the insurance. By Tue I should know what I'll need from St Martin the most urgent and we can pre order and pay the stuff at Island Water World.
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Old 15-08-2010, 04:26   #12
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Cool. II live in St. MArtin.....but any excuse is a good excuse to go sailing! I can head down early next week if thats ok with you? No problem picking it up at island water workd either... I seem to spend waaaaay too much time there anyways!
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Old 15-08-2010, 17:23   #13
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We got hit by lightning this week also. I am in the process of determining the total damages still. We have a $2500 deductible and are also subject to the same depreciation clauses. We notified the insurer of the situation but have yet to file a claim as I want to be sure when I do the math it makes sense.
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Old 15-08-2010, 17:44   #14
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Pictures.... Most of my electronics are toast... including one bilge pump....
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Old 16-08-2010, 12:24   #15
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Just curious - How would customs in St. Kitts know about anything one sailor gives to another?
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