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Old 15-04-2012, 19:12   #16
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
Not to be picky but those really aren't rogue waves. Media reports tend to call anything bigger than a 4' swell a "rogue wave".

I agree. It's a terrible tragedy, but it didn't happen because of a rogue wave. they had to be very close to those rocks. Even sailors with many years' experience can make misjudgments.
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Old 15-04-2012, 19:21   #17
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

The only thing that makes sense to me is that they sailed into an area of backwash, which means that they were too close.
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Old 15-04-2012, 19:28   #18
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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The only thing that makes sense to me is that they sailed into an area of backwash, which means that they were too close.
If such is the case, the owner/captain could be subject to civil and criminal legal action. "In reckless disregard ..."
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Old 15-04-2012, 19:36   #19
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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I'm intending to boat/sail to the Farallons if I can convince a buddy-boat to accompany. Had already decided this would be during late summer or early fall when the winds/waves are usually benign. Don't require wind to do it. ... Oh, there's another sailboat race to/from the Farallons scheduled in May. There are several scheduled every year. Always in the spring, sometimes early fall, but never with such tragedy.
People round the Farallon Islands quite frequently and safely. Just do it when the swell is down and at a safe distance. Stay in the bar channel as well. I have seen some massive waves breaking on the bar, large enough to roll a small ship.
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Old 15-04-2012, 19:40   #20
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Originally Posted by markpierce

If such is the case, the owner/captain could be subject to civil and criminal legal action. "In reckless disregard ..."
Way too early and in bad taste to go legal while the fate of some are unknown.
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Old 15-04-2012, 19:49   #21
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

I, as many others have done, salmon fished the Farrallons for many years. All I can say is that is some of the most Nasty coast line there is on the west coast!! Many a boat has been lost there !! sometimes in close like that it gets real bad ! it's a bad thing to happen to anyone to lose crew no matter weather your raceing or cruising Hope the seas give them up to the seachers, will pray for em !
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Old 16-04-2012, 07:33   #22
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

The body of a fifth member of the crew, Marc Kasanin 46, was recovered last night. USCG has stated that due to "expiration of survival time" they have ceased searching for the three crew that remain missing. This is the first time in the history of Farallon racing that there has been fatalities. All of the names have been released at this point with the exception of one of the missing who is from Ireland and his family has yet to be notified.
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Old 16-04-2012, 07:41   #23
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

..the missing crew are Alexis Busch from Larkspur, Allen Cahill from Tiberon and Jordan Fromm age 26, from Kentville. The Irishman remains unnamed. Reports from SFYC state that this was an experienced crew who had crewed together on this s/v for some time.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:05   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susanna reiter
This is the first time in the history of Farallon racing that there has been fatalities..
That's wrong. Six people died in the 1982 Double-handed Farallones race.

The problem with this race--and I've won my division in the Double-handed edition--is that the islands serve as the windward mark, and it pays off to round them tight. You can save as much as ten minutes as compared to someone who rounds conservatively. Even in a long race like these ones, ten minutes is a big hit to pay for safety.

The year we won our division I watched a Wyliecat 30 scoot around inside us along what I considered a horribly unsafe route. We had passed him a couple miles before the islands, and started the rounding about a quarter-mile ahead of him. But he was maybe ten boats lengths ahead of us after the rounding, and of course we were never able to catch him downwind. But I remember thinking that there was something wrong with a race that rewards that sort of risk-taking. I was also glad he wasn't in my division.

We were out sailing yesterday when the Pan-pan went out about the boat going aground on the islands. Word went out quickly through the racing community that they'd gone too tight into the southeast island, and had paid the price. Whether a mistake was made or not, we mourn them. There was a great deal of sadness last night in my yacht club and, reportedly, our neighboring yacht club where the boat had originated.

These guys were good sailors.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:07   #25
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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That's wrong. Six people died in the 1982 Double-handed Farallones race.

The problem with this race--and I've won my division in the Double-handed edition--is that the islands serve as the windward mark, and it pays off to round them tight. You can save as much as ten minutes as compared to someone who rounds conservatively. Even in a long race like these ones, ten minutes is a big hit to pay for safety.

The year we won our division I watched a Wyliecat 30 scoot around inside us along what I considered a horribly unsafe route. We had passed him a couple miles before the islands, and started the rounding about a quarter-mile ahead of him. But he was maybe ten boats lengths ahead of us after the rounding, and of course we were never able to catch him downwind. But I remember thinking that there was something wrong with a race that rewards that sort of risk-taking. I was also glad he wasn't in my division.

We were out sailing yesterday when the Pan-pan went out about the boat going aground on the islands. Word went out quickly through the racing community that they'd gone too tight into the southeast island, and had paid the price. Whether a mistake was made or not, we mourn them. There was a great deal of sadness last night in my yacht club and, reportedly, our neighboring yacht club where the boat had originated.

These guys were good sailors.

This was exactly the course of conversation on my dock last night. A race course which rewards risk-taking needs a revision of the course was the general consensus.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:15   #26
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

Sometimes the adrenal gland is just overwhelming...

As a confirmed adrenal junkie myself, I know how hard it is to make the "correct decision" when the "exciting risk" is right there in front of you...

Sadly they took the risk and it didn't pay off.


And it does seem as if a re-route of the course might make sense. Because sometimes you get the bear, and sometimes the bear gets you, but you don't have to make it easy for him.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:52   #27
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

Thanks for correction Bash...sorry that there have been others lost but no surprise...I was surprised when I read that bit about it being the first reported fatalities int he history of the race....I do agree...that is a bad windward mark.....ditto to what Sara said in post #27.....I think we all join in mourning this tragedy and are the wiser for it.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:56   #28
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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I've won my division in the Double-handed edition--is that the islands serve as the windward mark, and it pays off to round them tight. You can save as much as ten minutes as compared to someone who rounds conservatively. Even in a long race like these ones, ten minutes is a big hit to pay for safety.
Done the SSS single handed race a number of times, took second in my division twice, probably might have made first, but I'm a chichen of those BIG ASS BOAT EATEN ROCKS out there.. and there is no shallow water at that the islands.. 10 feet out, its a hundred feet down, but there is a 6 knot current running around them..
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Old 16-04-2012, 10:14   #29
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

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The body of a fifth member of the crew, Marc Kasanin 46, was recovered last night. USCG has stated that due to "expiration of survival time" they have ceased searching for the three crew that remain missing. This is the first time in the history of Farallon racing that there has been fatalities. All of the names have been released at this point with the exception of one of the missing who is from Ireland and his family has yet to be notified.
If I am not mistaken, there are four crew still missing. There were three survivors airlifted from the rocks, and Marc's body was recovered on Saturday. The crew members who are still missing are: Alan Cahill, of Tiburon, Calif.; Jordan Fromm, of San Rafael, Calif.; Elmer Morrissey, who is from Ireland; and Alexis Busch, of Larkspur, Calif.

The conditions were rough. A good friend was crewing on the boat that spotted Low Speed Chase among the rocks and breakers, and he made the initial radio report to the Coast Guard. I spoke with him and the skipper, and they told me that there was absolutely no way that they could have gone in amongst that chaos and survived. Even out where they were they were getting swept by the occasional breaking wave as the swells reflected off the rocks. Another friend who was racing told me that he stood off the island by a half mile and felt that even that was too close.

This is the first fatal incident for this particular Farallones race, but there are several other races that round these rocks, and there have been fatalities. The ones I am familiar did not happen at the Farallones, but as the boats were returning to San Francisco, on or near the shoals at the channel entrance. This is more treacherous than an open-ocean race.

I've raced against Low Speed Chase (2008 Pacific Cup), but am sorry to say I didn't know them well. We are all in shock here in San Francisco, and I'm sure that we are all going to try to learn something from this tragedy.
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Old 16-04-2012, 13:50   #30
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Re: Rogue-wave tragedy at the Farallons

An account of the tragedy from the Captain of Temerity who witnessed and made the first vhf call

OYRA Farallones 2012 at Never Sea Land

A very sad day for the sailing community.
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