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Old 10-07-2014, 08:19   #61
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

So if you are using your gps and the company shuts off there system with our you knowing and you are in the middle of a reef or inlet and sink your boat you would do nothing. No matter the disclaimer if you buy safety equipment you would expect it to work. If the company dose something to the equipment they are liable Same as if you bought a live raft and had to deploy it and it sank causing you to loss a loved one and found the company forgot to sew the pontoon would you not all do the same thing.

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Old 10-07-2014, 08:41   #62
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Any decent expert witness will blow this out of the water...the reliability of handheld sat phones is well documented.....EPIRBs are for emergencies...Sat Phones are for communications...maybe even unreliable comms....some equipment is obviously better than others.

We all know EVERYTHING on a boat works as advertised 100% of the time at sea...if it fails...it's obvious whose problem it is....

What will kill this case faster than anything is all the unhappy customers all over the planet with service...and because the basic units to connect do so...it's unlikely to be a key point unless the manufacturer has documented intentional problems within the "unit".

I'm sure a crack lawyer could disagree with everyone of my points...so we will just have t wait and see....
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Old 10-07-2014, 08:45   #63
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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So if you are using your gps and the company shuts off there system with our you knowing and you are in the middle of a reef or inlet and sink your boat you would do nothing. No matter the disclaimer if you buy safety equipment you would expect it to work. If the company dose something to the equipment they are liable Same as if you bought a live raft and had to deploy it and it sank causing you to loss a loved one and found the company forgot to sew the pontoon would you not all do the same thing.

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First the GPS system is owned by the govt. Good luck suing them.

More importantly, relying on any single navigation device as the be all end all is poor seamanship and you get what you deserve. GPS signals do go out or get disrupted periodically, so failure to prepare for this is your own fault.

So by your logic, the captain of the costa concordia should be suing the US govt because thier GPS system didn't allow him to pass dangerously close to the rocks and it has ruined his career?
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:00   #64
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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First the GPS system is owned by the govt. Good luck suing them.

More importantly, relying on any single navigation device as the be all end all is poor seamanship and you get what you deserve. GPS signals do go out or get disrupted periodically, so failure to prepare for this is your own fault.

So by your logic, the captain of the costa concordia should be suing the US govt because thier GPS system didn't allow him to pass dangerously close to the rocks and it has ruined his career?
I think this was a good example of relying solely on a chartplotter...

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Old 10-07-2014, 09:14   #65
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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If Eric was unable to use his satphone because of some wrongful behavior of the provider -- like cutting him off contrary to the terms of Eric's contract -- then the provider is liable for damages proximately caused by this wrongful behavior.
This will be the crux of that case...the TOC of that contract. If, indeed, the contract ensures uninterrupted usage in emergency situations then RH has a case.

If, on the other hand, as it seems from the stories I've seen here, it is a fairly common practice for sat phone companies to change providers occasionally, which causes such interruptions in service - and the company's counsel didn't actually cover this kind of thing in that contract...some corporate lawyers need to be out of a job.

The bottom line is the language of that contract. We sailors have our perceptions of satphones being "emergency comms devices" and all that entails. The contract spells out the reality.

And for those saying that the satphone and boat problems are two separate issues - don't count on that. RH themselves made this all and only about the satphone in that interview (11:35+). Anyone who has even remotely followed this story, and RH's comments, knows that's not true.

Finally, another issue that was raised (one I think could be of some significance) in that interview is the issue of administering the antibiotic to the child. They stated that the child was spitting out the medication and they didn't know what to do. And they further went on to say that the paratroopers used a different technique which was successful - and that had they known that technique none of this would have happened. Play that one out a bit and things can get a bit thorny.

My only point here is that this whole thing is ripe for a big backfire on many levels. We'll see.
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:25   #66
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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We sailors have our perceptions of satphones being "emergency comms devices" and all that entails.
I think these perceptions were fostered by the providers. I would think a case could also be made this would be tantamount to fraud regardless of the contractual language.
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:41   #67
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Globalstar guarantee...I'm not a lawyer..but this seems to be a damning statement for this network...even if every blue water expert testified to the probability of failure of equipment at sea...and I agree...I guess this would be damning...wonder how many warranty/guarantee cases are one by corps because they just state "who really takes marketing seriously"....

"Independent testing verifies that Iridium’s first time connection rate is better than 99%. That is the reason why Iridium can offer a 100% satisfaction with your Iridium satellite phone service. More information: Iridium 9505A Satellite Phone

When mission critical communications is necessary high reliability is needed. When possible life and death situations arise why take the chance being without reliable communications. "

Iridium Network Quality Guarantee - Globalcom
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:42   #68
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Certainly the case has bigger implications than just paying for Rebel Heart II. If Iridium caves to Rebel Heart, wouldn't that make them liable for the costs related to their rescue as well? and other rescues (or deaths)?

From my personal perspective, I see a couple who refuses to take responsibility for their actions and wants some one else to pay for their mistakes and misfortune. They took a risk by sailing that boat into the pacific. Risk means you have something to lose. Risk does not mean you take a boat into the ocean and if it doesn't work out you find some one to blame and get them to pay for it.

Legally, shouldn't the Rebel Heart have been aware of the contract terms and know that the sat-phone is not a 'guaranteed' service? They cant be the first people who wanted to use their sat phone and it didn't work.
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:53   #69
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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Globalstar guarantee...I'm not a lawyer..but this seems to be a damning statement for this network...even if every blue water expert testified to the probability of failure of equipment at sea...and I agree...I guess this would be damning...wonder how many warranty/guarantee cases are one by corps because they just state "who really takes marketing seriously"....

"Independent testing verifies that Iridium’s first time connection rate is better than 99%. That is the reason why Iridium can offer a 100% satisfaction with your Iridium satellite phone service. More information: Iridium 9505A Satellite Phone

When mission critical communications is necessary high reliability is needed. When possible life and death situations arise why take the chance being without reliable communications. "

Iridium Network Quality Guarantee - Globalcom
Here is the more interesting sentence on that page you linked to:

“Effective immediately, Iridium has discontinued their service Guarantee. It is our experience that dropped calls are not uncommon on all satellite networks, including Iridium. This page is maintained for historical purposes only”

The plot thickens. I wonder when that was added? But again, it will come down to the contract - not a webpage.
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:56   #70
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Apparently not quite done.....

https://twitter.com/CaptEricKaufman/...86920073658368
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:56   #71
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Well good, maybe the phone company will have to get their sh*t together now!
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Old 10-07-2014, 09:57   #72
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

Good for RH. The satellite company made a very poor decision to turn off a phone without notification and should be responsible for that decision. They expected the phone to do one thing, and the phone company stopped that from happening.

This isn't 'failure of a system' - this was intentional disabling of a system by the manufacturer.
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Old 10-07-2014, 10:17   #73
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

. Limitation Of Liability

The satellite services provided by the satellite service provider may be temporarily interrupted, delayed or otherwise limited and is not available everywhere in the world. GlobalCom makes no representation that the satellite service provider the customer chooses to use can provide uninterrupted service. Furthermore, GlobalCom shall have no liabilities or credit due for interrupted service unless caused by gross negligence of GlobalCom. GlobalCom shall not be liable for acts or omissions of other carriers, equipment failures or modifications, acts of God, strikes, government actions, or causes beyond our reasonable control. GlobalCom makes no warranties with respect to the service of any kind whatsoever, expressed or implied, except as specifically provided in this agreement. The implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for any particular purpose are hereby disclaimed and excluded. GlobalCom shall not be liable to its distributor or customer or any third party for any special, incidental, or consequential damages.
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Old 10-07-2014, 10:17   #74
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

It is interesting they denied the antecedent in their language. Why not just exclude it? I think it is misleading at best.

However what Smack has brought up doesn't not appear to be germane to the issue, if RH had a problem with dropped calls then they would still be likely able to communicate at some later point. Due to the sim card change they were not so could be considered negligent and a contributory factor.

As an aside, I would like to point out lawyers present their cases and it is the jury that typically makes the decision. A legal degree is not necessary to be a juror and so I don't think it has to be a qualification to discuss the merits of the lawsuit in this forum.
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Old 10-07-2014, 10:19   #75
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Re: Rebel Heart Crew Suing.....

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I'm a lawyer, and although I didn't practice any litigation, I did, as a young law clerk, write the appellate brief for the defense in a landmark Federal case which held that gun manufacturers are not liable to shooting victims just because they made the gun the victims were shot with. I am a big proponent of tort reform and consider our tort system to be a menace to our civilization.

HOWEVER, I actually think this may be a good case, at least based on the few facts which we have. Sat phones are used for safety. If Eric was unable to use his satphone because of some wrongful behavior of the provider -- like cutting him off contrary to the terms of Eric's contract -- then the provider is liable for damages proximately caused by this wrongful behavior. I think, depending on all the facts (of which I repeat we know probably less than 1%), the loss of Eric's boat might really have been proximately caused by his inability to use the satphone. I would not rush to judgment as many of you have.
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So if you are using your gps and the company shuts off there system with our you knowing and you are in the middle of a reef or inlet and sink your boat you would do nothing. No matter the disclaimer if you buy safety equipment you would expect it to work. If the company dose something to the equipment they are liable Same as if you bought a live raft and had to deploy it and it sank causing you to loss a loved one and found the company forgot to sew the pontoon would you not all do the same thing.

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Good for RH. The satellite company made a very poor decision to turn off a phone without notification and should be responsible for that decision. They expected the phone to do one thing, and the phone company stopped that from happening.

This isn't 'failure of a system' - this was intentional disabling of a system by the manufacturer.
+1 to all of these.

The way I look at it is, RH by buying the phone entered into a contract with the provider for service. Now things breaking or not working due to mechanical or electronic failures are one thing and out of anybody's control, but in this case there wasn't a problem with the phone. The provider shut off their service thus violating the implied contract of providing service to the best of their abilities.

I don't think this has anything to do with whether the vessel would be lost or not but more of if you are paying for a service the service provider must provide that service to the best of their abilities and not just shut it off with out good reason.

If I was in their position I would investigate the possibility of a law suit also. Maybe they will win maybe they won't (I hope they do), but if nothing else maybe the service provider will stop doing business in that manner and people that are thousands of miles from home wont have to worry about a friend or family member mailing them a sim card while they are in an anchorage in a 3rd world country.
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