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Old 12-05-2014, 11:38   #16
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

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Yes, Eric, I was certainly thinking of you and glad that you are well enough to start a club : )

The only bigger club would be the almost-sunk-a-boat-club.

D

Maybe start a "sunk someone else's boat" club
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Old 12-05-2014, 12:36   #17
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

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What an incredible story!

13+ days south of Mar Del Plata. Lying ahull. Boat rolls 360. No life raft and the dinghy destroyed.
Swimming in the water, at night, 150 nms off shore......

Not a good situation.


You MUST read the last entry in the blog! | what's left of a life




Mark
I just read that last entry. Wow, I am so glad to read they were safe, things can be replaced.

My best wishes that this something he can put behind him and just move on. It's done. More life ahead. Make the most of it.

It appears there was some reason to not just Heave to for them I am curious about.
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Old 12-05-2014, 13:24   #18
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

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Yes, lying ahull is a very old technique thats pretty well discredited. It means lying broadside to the waves, without sails or power.

The options are, because it was wind on the nose, hoving to or a parachute sea anchor off the bow. Probably not strong enough for the parachute so hove to.
If wind up the bum then keep sailing slowly, under bare poles if necessary. with drogue out the back. The idea is to reduce the energy. In 13 meter seas, 45 feet, a boat could pitch pole, so just take it slow.
Ahh, that makes sense!
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Old 12-05-2014, 15:27   #19
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Pete, if you read this thread I am so glad you both made it. I hope you are both doing well. Sorry for the loss of your boat.

There was a write up about this section of ocean in the "Voyage of Egret" log, a Nordhavn 46 that transited this area a few years back. They talked about how the wind whips down off the mountains and around the tip of S.A. and about one blow that they went through. Sounds like a very tricky piece of ocean and one has to be prepared for at least one if not two serious blows during the passage.
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Old 12-05-2014, 18:25   #20
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

I wonder about 13m seas, that wouldn't be the norm there. Perhaps those were the rogue ones? 13m is big even for the southern ocean with, effectively, unlimited fetch but there in shallow water with a limited fetch 13m sounds wrong. Could be but sounds wrong.

If you take a 1000m radius around the Falklands that area is probably the sector with most knock-downs. I always treat the edge of the continental self and the interaction with the Falklands current there with respect, always food for thought.

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Old 24-06-2014, 01:21   #21
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Hi folks:
Thanks for all words of kindness and encouragement.
One thing I would like to correct in my account of the sinking was the height of the waves during our difficulties. I always found it hard to estimate wave height and in the first days after the sinking the figure I heard from the Argentine coast guard was 15 metres. I thought that was too high and I used the figure of 13 metres. That, also was too high--it was a figure tossed about at the time but it referred to the height above water of the tanker that was dispatched to aid us.
In retrospect, I am guessing the wave heights to be 8-9 metres during the 3 days of hard blow that we found ourselves in. No doubt the wave(s) that rolled us were slightly higher and also breaking.
My boat was difficult to 'heave to' and found 'lying a-hull' to work well in the occasions that I needed to use the technique. Keep in mind that I was single-handing the boat most of the time -4 years- so I did what was easiest. Furling in the headsail and dropping the main was easiest. The boat always rode slightly into wind, as opposed to beam on when the rudder was adjusted correctly.
In the kind light of time I should have turned and gone with the weather. I was more concerned of losing hard-fought miles. I did have a Jordan series drogue staged and ready to deploy but I had no concerns at the time. I was happy and comfortable retiring to the shower before the rolling. Sometimes one learns too late.
I once more must thank my pal and crewman, Paul Mahony, for saving my waterlogged bones and for the Argentine coast guard for their bravery and skill in hauling us to safety. The are an entirely professional organization.
Pete.
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Old 25-06-2014, 07:07   #22
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Hi Pete, sorry for you loss, she looked like a fine, and well found yacht. Thanks for sharing this information with us.

I am very curious to find out what sort a damage she got after the capsize and if you know what caused the flooding? Maybe leasons from this can help us make our boats more seaworthy.

Thanks, Ben
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Old 25-06-2014, 09:58   #23
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Hi Ben:
The boat rolled into the inverted position and hung there, stable, for 15 seconds or more (according to my shipmate). I think most of the water came in from the companionway during that upside down time. That hatch had a heavy Bomar sliding metal/plastic cover and drop boards. I had one wooden drop board in place and was using a 1/4" plexiglass drop 'board' to keep most of the spray out of the cabin before we rolled. All parts of the companionway closures were gone and water flooded in.
When we righted (I think another big wave snapped the mast and she righted) we had about 1 m of water inside. The dogs for the forward and centre hatches were gone and both those hatches (Bomar) were cracked and no longer secured. Water sloshed in as we sloshed about. Water came in, as well, through the heater chimney hole--chimney gone.
The Fleming wind vane was dangling by one of three attachment points. Water may have found its way in from torn attachment points on the transom.
I think we may have kept her afloat by shutting all thru hulls. That did not occur to me. I was operating at partial consciousness for most of the time after being knocked out and then shivering so bad it was hard to concentrate. I should have closed those thru hulls. My shipmate did not know where they were and we did not discuss the matter. The sink in the bathroom, the sink in the galley and two others used to discharge bilge water became below water line as we rolled and settled.
On deck the mast was down, partially on deck. It was a deck-stepped mast and it broke off about 3 feet from coach roof level. No water came in from there; the hard dodger and bimini were gone; the steering pedestal was broken off; wind vane, too; my new radar and solar panel frame was still standing--well made in Buenos Aires!
Most floor access panels were gone and that made managing down below very hazardous--I have to scars to prove it. **** was everywhere, as you can imagine.
Advice: make sure all aboard know where the thru hull shut offs are. Do a run through on how to activate the emergency beacon when you have time and good light. Don't get knocked out. More will probably come to me.
Pete
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Old 03-07-2014, 06:49   #24
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Thanks Pete,

That's some really useful information. Must have been one hell of a blow to damage her like that. The Bomar hatches failing is a big worry. And anything that can rip off a flemming windvane is pretty wild.

I have also found myself getting into trouble in what at the time seemed much less than survival conditions... Those oddball rogues are certainly out there.

I have been a fan of helmets for sailing for a while, but so far haven't found anything comfortable enough to sleep in. Once I made everybody wear bike helmets to bed! crook necks in the morning... But seriously a head injury like you had completely changes the situation. I am looking into these soft rugby helmets.

The floating floorboards and sinks backflooding are good reminders, thanks.

Can you remember how the solar tower was made, and the dodger. might give us some good data on just how strong they need to be. clearly the dodger was not strong enough, but maybe the boom took it out as the mast came down?

She sure was a nice looking yacht, what design?

All the best, and thanks again for the report.
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Old 03-07-2014, 07:01   #25
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Wow, that's an amazing story. Standing by for the book to come out?
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Old 03-07-2014, 07:07   #26
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

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I have been a fan of helmets for sailing for a while, but so far haven't found anything comfortable enough to sleep in. Once I made everybody wear bike helmets to bed! crook necks in the morning... But seriously a head injury like you had completely changes the situation. I am looking into these soft rugby helmets.
I also agree. Not only in heavy weather conditions. Used kayak helmet. Saved me many times when I hadn't slept and not thinking. Like this rugby idea.
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Old 18-11-2014, 19:51   #27
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

I used a bike helmet often when down below in tough seas. Many more sharp objects to hit down there. I proved it once off coast of Ecuador and was knocked clean out. Had to look at my chart plotter to figure out what ocean I was in. Attached clip from Argentine coast guard. Glad to see the boys getting proper recognition from IMO--they received awards of bravery and well justified.


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Old 19-11-2014, 04:57   #28
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Pete:
Great clip!
Glad to see youre still aboard the CF, on occasion.
What are you up to, these days?
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Old 19-11-2014, 17:20   #29
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Hi Gord:
Good to hear from you. My sailing days are done but I had a good run. Crossed the el Pacifico twice and just about got around the world. I am now playing out the string here in Philippines. Have to dodge the odd typhoon but not in a sailboat!
Pic attached from my balcony (Puerto Galera, Mindoro)
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Old 19-11-2014, 17:25   #30
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Re: Rigormortis: Acknowledging loss of La Rosa off Argentina

Few boats will actually heave to in large rough seas. Great tactic for less than that....
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