Having owned many boats over the last 15 years and carries out surveys on many hundreds of yachts, I took a punt on an advert for a damaged, Moody 54 (Red Sky) and drove from Sydney
to Ballina on the weekend to take a look. It is clear that the rudder
skeg damage would have allowed a fair quantity of water
to enter the hull
. As we now know, this did not sink her, but what level-headed individual would stay on the boat in that weather
when given an option to leave?
Anyway, she is alive, but having seen the photos of her on the beach and then seen her in the 'flesh', it's clear that she had a bad journey from the beach to the yard. However, there are a number of clues to the damage and its cause:
1) The skeg at an angle.
2) The rudder
3) Cable slices in the trailing edge of the keel
(even a salvage
operator who needed to get her off the beach would not use anything less than a thick chain)
The shame of it is that such a beautiful boat was actually destroyed by the salvage operation and not the accident
itself. The council apparently needed her to be removed quickly.
If someone can get her safely back into service
then I wish them good luck and hope that they build the jig that she needs, as there is considerable damage to much of the load-bearing structure. Some of this appears to have happened when she was put onto a makeshift cradle
The looting was criminal, but I have difficulty in understanding how the buoy managed to take off and move position. Also, how the line to it was at such a lateral angle that it fouled the rudder of Red Sky. Is it possible that it was snagged by a fishing
net, or a much bugger boat? If it was in much shallower water
than intended then it could be floating a out of alignment with its anchor
. Or did it lose its anchor
? Anyway, as it was not still attached to Red Sky when she washed up, I suspect it will remain a 'mystery'.
She certainly was a beautiful boat.