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Old 19-07-2015, 14:04   #1
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Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

I hope this forum can help me. I have a friend who left Tortola on Sat. June 13 on a 40 ton steel hulled 20m Jongert ketch bound for Azores and then on to Greece. He does not have a Sat phone. Based on the collective knowledge of this forum, how long would it realistically take to sail from Tortola to Azores during this period. I'm not a sailor or familiar with prevailing winds etc during this time of the year. He has been at sea for 36 days as of today. Thanks for any information you can provide.
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Old 19-07-2015, 18:23   #2
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Are you worried for his safety?


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Old 19-07-2015, 18:29   #3
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

I've just looked for the distance from Tortola to the Azores, which is ~2600 miles it looks like. A large, fast boat should complete the distance in well under a month, but many things might account for a longer passage. Do you know anything else about the boat, crew, or how they were outfitted? How do you know they haven't made a landfall? The more information you provide, the better people can help.


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Old 19-07-2015, 18:34   #4
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

I guess I will be worried for his safety if he should have reached the Azores before now. He is a very competent sailor but I do not know if it takes 20, 30, or 40+ day's during this time of the year.
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Old 19-07-2015, 18:36   #5
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

What else do you know about the voyage? Is he alone? Is it his boat? Etc.


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Old 19-07-2015, 18:42   #6
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

I spoke to him on Friday the day before he left and he said his sail route was direct to Azores and he would send emails to friends and family as soon as he arrived. While he is a 40 year veteran merchant mariner, he is traveling alone on this crossing.
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Old 19-07-2015, 18:43   #7
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

The boat is very well equipped for a transatlantic journey. He sailed it over here last year with 2 other crew members.
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Old 19-07-2015, 18:45   #8
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Have you checked in with any other of his family or friends?


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Old 19-07-2015, 18:58   #9
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Yes. I have been communicating with his son in Great Britain. He has heard nothing either.
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Old 19-07-2015, 19:39   #10
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Specifically, I'm trying to find out if he had an EPIRB or AIS aboard. In the event of an emergency, an EPIRB would be one of the lines of communication with help; it goes to Search and Rescue organizations. It's likely he had at least one if the boat is well outfitted. He may also have updated his information before leaving, which would help SAR assess whether he is overdue. For example, the EPIRB registration should list a contact person on shore, and that person would probably be the first person he contacted if he made landfall.

It would also be useful to know if there is an SSB (single side band) radio aboard. If so, it's possible he is communicating with other boats, perhaps in a 'net'. If he us, those boats may know his whereabouts, or last known position.

I think you want to make sure other people he said he was going to contact haven't heard from him before getting too worried. Maybe your email filtered out his communication, or he forgot to send you one. Or maybe he's just still sailing. There has been bad weather for yachts crossing (2015 Another bad year in the Azores..?), so maybe he changed course. Do not despair, there are many possibilities that might explain a slow passage.

If you and his son think the yacht is overdue, you can do a few things.

Here is a page that will help you find relevant Search and Rescue authorities. http://sarcontacts.info.
You might consider being more specific in how you ask for help here, by changing the name of your thread to Possible OVERDUE Yacht, with the boat name as well, and his destination. Then describe the boat, with size, color, model, nationality, and name. Be as specific as possible. People will be more likely to respond, and surely someone with more knowledge than me will chime in. Go onto every sailing/cruising forum with this info too.

Good luck, and remember there are many explanations for a slow passage. He may be just fine.


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Old 19-07-2015, 20:23   #11
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Thanks for your reply. I sailed with him for three weeks in February and know the following. He does have an EPIRB but not AIS. I think I remember an SSB. Can't be certain because we never needed it while I was aboard. I know there are many factors that could cause him to be delayed and get behind his original schedule but his son and I were just wondering if we should get concerned at the 36 day mark or continue to wait and see. There has been no notification that the EPIRB has been activated which is a very positive sign to me. Thanks again for your information!
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Old 19-07-2015, 20:32   #12
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Not that I have a crystal ball, but I would not be overly concerned as yet. Bermuda to Azores can easily take 30 days or more and I think Tortola could add a week. If they have an Epirb that's great.

Hopefully some of the pros here will comment
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Old 19-07-2015, 20:36   #13
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Thanks!
One of our biggest concerns is that he is making this crossing alone. But he does have a great deal of experience.
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Old 20-07-2015, 03:32   #14
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

Keep us updated!


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Old 20-07-2015, 04:39   #15
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Re: Travel time from Tortola to Azores??

I certainly will.
Thanks!
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