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Old 21-05-2014, 11:21   #211
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

I had some people ask me a couple other questions about the boat, so here it goes.

First, about the liferaft it's a little hard to say what they had. The boat is designed for on-deck storage of the liferaft under the helm seat aft. It's a fairly large space so it could probably accommodate a 12-man liferaft depending on size, but I could also see cases where a raft that size might not fit. I carry an 8 man Winslow offshore lightweight raft without any problems, but it's about as wide as one would fit in that space (and it's in a valaise, not a hard case). That space is also where the scuppers are, so you have to be sure you don't block them. During racing we usually carry our raft down on the floor by the mast where it's out of the way, dry, and weight is centered. Of course ours only weights 50 pounds so everyone on the crew can haul it up. When my wife and I cruise we keep it under the helm seat. It's hard to say where they were carrying the 12 man raft though - if it was large or in a hard case they might have to carry it on deck.

Now, deploying the raft from there will mean lifting it out. The 40.7 has a closed transom with a solid wall between that compartment and the swim step so you can't just slide the raft out towards the stern. Also, the open space between that compartment and the wheel is not super wide, so lifting it in and out is a little awkward. The helm seat does lift out if you open the lazzarette hatches on either side, which is the easiest way to lift it in and out. In a capsize it's hard to say what would happen. I could see the seat potentially falling out freeing the raft to go off. But if it didn't, I could see the raft getting pinned in there, and potentially inflating while trapped in that little spot. It would depend on a lot of factors. Freeing an uninflated raft from that spot on an upside down boat would be a challenge, but if you popped the seat out the raft should sink far enough to inflate. The weight of the raft on the seat might be enough to force it out anyway. However if it inflated while stuck in there you'd probably be out of luck.

Second, about the keel attachment, this is a fairly common attachment method. The keel is not particularly aggressive in design, either with weight concentrated low (there are keels with much more uneven weight distribution) or with the narrowness of the hull joint. There are a lot of boats out there with more aggressive keels attached this exact same way without many failures. It will bear investigation, but I see nothing about the 40.7 that would indicated it's at all unsafe in this regard.

Last, from the photo it's hard to see the keel area. You can clearly see the saildrive, but the keel attachment area was submerged so it's hard to see if the hull is torn away or not. For sure the keel is missing, and I have a hard time imaging a scenario where the keel was torn off without ripping the bottom of the hull out as well since it would require a failure of all those keel bolts. Keep in mind that you'd need to tear away the structural grid as well as the hull, so you'd need a lot of impact and glass damage to trigger this. I would guess that reports of taking on water would hint that enough damage was done somehow to the hull and grid that it started to break sway, possibly working open in a seaway until eventually the entire structure failed. But that's purely speculation right now.
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Old 21-05-2014, 12:13   #212
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Originally Posted by gjorgensen View Post
I had some people ask me a couple other questions about the boat, so here it goes.

First, about the liferaft it's a little hard to say what they had. The boat is designed for on-deck storage of the liferaft under the helm seat aft. It's a fairly large space so it could probably accommodate a 12-man liferaft depending on size, but I could also see cases where a raft that size might not fit. I carry an 8 man Winslow offshore lightweight raft without any problems, but it's about as wide as one would fit in that space (and it's in a valaise, not a hard case). That space is also where the scuppers are, so you have to be sure you don't block them. During racing we usually carry our raft down on the floor by the mast where it's out of the way, dry, and weight is centered. Of course ours only weights 50 pounds so everyone on the crew can haul it up. When my wife and I cruise we keep it under the helm seat. It's hard to say where they were carrying the 12 man raft though - if it was large or in a hard case they might have to carry it on deck.

Now, deploying the raft from there will mean lifting it out. The 40.7 has a closed transom with a solid wall between that compartment and the swim step so you can't just slide the raft out towards the stern. Also, the open space between that compartment and the wheel is not super wide, so lifting it in and out is a little awkward. The helm seat does lift out if you open the lazzarette hatches on either side, which is the easiest way to lift it in and out. In a capsize it's hard to say what would happen. I could see the seat potentially falling out freeing the raft to go off. But if it didn't, I could see the raft getting pinned in there, and potentially inflating while trapped in that little spot. It would depend on a lot of factors. Freeing an uninflated raft from that spot on an upside down boat would be a challenge, but if you popped the seat out the raft should sink far enough to inflate. The weight of the raft on the seat might be enough to force it out anyway. However if it inflated while stuck in there you'd probably be out of luck.

Second, about the keel attachment, this is a fairly common attachment method. The keel is not particularly aggressive in design, either with weight concentrated low (there are keels with much more uneven weight distribution) or with the narrowness of the hull joint. There are a lot of boats out there with more aggressive keels attached this exact same way without many failures. It will bear investigation, but I see nothing about the 40.7 that would indicated it's at all unsafe in this regard.

Last, from the photo it's hard to see the keel area. You can clearly see the saildrive, but the keel attachment area was submerged so it's hard to see if the hull is torn away or not. For sure the keel is missing, and I have a hard time imaging a scenario where the keel was torn off without ripping the bottom of the hull out as well since it would require a failure of all those keel bolts. Keep in mind that you'd need to tear away the structural grid as well as the hull, so you'd need a lot of impact and glass damage to trigger this. I would guess that reports of taking on water would hint that enough damage was done somehow to the hull and grid that it started to break sway, possibly working open in a seaway until eventually the entire structure failed. But that's purely speculation right now.
Well said Sir! It's a bitter pill to swallow but would they really have been able to deploy the liferaft after the capsize? As you say, possibly not. Are these liferafts self inflating even? I hate to say it but from that photo I can't see them being inside the hull, it seems very low in the water...as has been said, chances are that the broken keels has left holes in the hull . So my questions are...

Can a GRP boat, minus it's keel, still stay afloat?

Is the photo indeed of CR (BBC News showed footage earlier of another recent yacht abandonment in the area)?

I'm not sure whether it is written down anywhere but you stay with your boat until it sinks? Even if you are in the liferaft... does it not comes equipped with a knife to cut the painter?

Regards

Tony
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Old 21-05-2014, 12:41   #213
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Old 21-05-2014, 12:53   #214
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

There is and has been an amazing amount of time and energy and sacrifice on the part of many in this search and rescue operation.

Even prior to its first official call off, 53 hours were spent in a systematic criss cross of a large part of the ocean. I dont think they missed too much regardless of what people thought.

I can only offer my sincere thank you to the men and women involved in this mid ocean search. Resuming the search reinforces the human element of going against all known facts and putting hope before reality. Sometimes a miracle happens. That what we humans pray for.

We pray for a triumph, and if it isnt, we will be sure that we as humans did all we could and long after hope expired. Its what we do.

God bless.
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Old 21-05-2014, 12:55   #215
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

I thought the RAF C130 actually flew out of Portugal after refueling after the flight from Brize Norton. Also, anybody know why the wreck and search areas are 400miles apart? That's some drift!


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Old 21-05-2014, 16:06   #216
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Originally Posted by weavis View Post
There is and has been an amazing amount of time and energy and sacrifice on the part of many in this search and rescue operation.

Even prior to its first official call off, 53 hours were spent in a systematic criss cross of a large part of the ocean. I dont think they missed too much regardless of what people thought.

I can only offer my sincere thank you to the men and women involved in this mid ocean search. Resuming the search reinforces the human element of going against all known facts and putting hope before reality. Sometimes a miracle happens. That what we humans pray for.

We pray for a triumph, and if it isnt, we will be sure that we as humans did all we could and long after hope expired. Its what we do.

God bless.
^^^^^What he said.

Wow, weavis, I wish I'd written that post! Spot on, well done!

Ann
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Old 21-05-2014, 16:08   #217
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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The overturned hull that that they found seems to be a long way from the search area in this drawing. I thought they first reported trouble when they were about 600 miles from Cape Cod and said they were diverting to the Azores. Later when they lost contact and/or maybe activated PIRBS they were 1000 miles away. Something seems wrong in this graphic. I would not think an overturned hull would drift that far away from the search area in such a short time. An overturned hull drifted 400 miles in a week? Why am I wasting time with sails? Sniff Sniff something just does not smell right here. Might just be confusion in the art department.
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Old 21-05-2014, 16:17   #218
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

Those of you who are claiming this resumed search is a waste of time, a 'token' gesture, that they already completed a 'thorough' search, but are hedging both ways with your 'prayers' that this 'miriacle' be successful, should show a little more emphathy.

You experienced sailers should know that 4000 square miles in two days is not 'thorough' by any stretch of the imagination. Or are you really such arm chair sailers that you don't know how big the search area is?

So much for the brotherhood.
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Old 21-05-2014, 16:41   #219
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

"As of yesterday our course has changed somewhat as we head due north to intersect the search operation for the sunken boat. I was struggling some with the thought of the crew of the boat bobbing around in their life-raft. I can only hope that that is where they are and that some time soon someone will spot a bright raft with some relieved sailors in it. We’ve heard that a few other ARC boats have joined the search, which warms my heart under such sad circumstances. As selfish as it is, I think the hope would be that others would do the same for us. Good luck to all of the search vessels.
Cheers for now,"


37.17.8 N 49.38.0 W

It is 21.00 UT, we have entered the search area, made contact with a us coast guard airplane who was overhead, he confirmed to keep a good look out.
At dusk we will reduce sail, about 22.00 ut and go slow in the night north west, at first light we will head north east acrose the search area.
After this there will be a limit to what we can do as still 7 or 8 days to Azores and as Gertha has shed part of her propelar we have no option to engine at speed if necesary to clear an Aores high if it builds.
GERTA 4

No matter what the outcome. If anyone should happen across the crew of the boat Gerta 4 in some location in the future. I think they deserve a round of drinks.
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Old 21-05-2014, 16:48   #220
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Originally Posted by tedsherrin View Post
Those of you who are claiming this resumed search is a waste of time, a 'token' gesture, that they already completed a 'thorough' search, but are hedging both ways with your 'prayers' that this 'miriacle' be successful, should show a little more emphathy.

You experienced sailers should know that 4000 square miles in two days is not 'thorough' by any stretch of the imagination. Or are you really such arm chair sailers that you don't know how big the search area is?

So much for the brotherhood.
Ted

As both a pilot and sailor (albeit a much closer to shore one) as are others here, and as someone moderately familiar with satellite and physical searches. as others are here.....and someone who can work out possible areas to look in from sea state and wind direction as others can here, and also someone who spent a large number of years working in emergency, it aint really 4000 square miles.

That is what is happening now to be sure to be sure and cover ground outside of the estimated area, to be sure to be sure. There are a shitload of boats in the area with electronics and visual scanning going on all the time.. The communication between the boats and aircraft and USCG is ongoing.

This is not a brotherhood. This is real life being worked by real people who dont know the 4 sailors but are concerned enough to risk their lives. This is a Coastguard with limited financial resources who afterwards, win or lose the search, will have to tally the cost and bear it. Winning is what we are "praying" for in the face of diminishing odds.

I dont know about you but at this stage, Prayer is about what is left to do, and Im not going to waste the time I could be doing that in arguing with your comments.

I will put it down to frustration and anxiety rather than vitriol and rebuke.
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Old 21-05-2014, 16:49   #221
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Originally Posted by mbianka View Post
[I]"
[I] .


No matter what the outcome. If anyone should happen across the crew of the boat Gerta 4 in some location in the future. I think they deserve a round of drinks.




+1








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Old 21-05-2014, 16:54   #222
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

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Originally Posted by mbianka View Post

No matter what the outcome. If anyone should happen across the crew of the boat Gerta 4 in some location in the future. I think they deserve a round of drinks.
+2
Thanks Mike for this.
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Old 21-05-2014, 23:56   #223
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

A catamaran involved in the search has found debris in the search area BBC News - Debris found in Cheeki Rafiki yacht search, more updates will follow
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Old 22-05-2014, 02:03   #224
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

Debris found in Cheeki Rafiki yacht search

The Cheeki Rafiki yacht had taken part in Antigua Sailing Week

Debris has been found in the Atlantic Ocean near where the UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki disappeared.
The captain of a catamaran taking part in the search told the BBC details had been passed to the US Coast Guard, but said he did not know if the debris was part of the missing boat.
The 40ft Cheeki Rafiki, based in Southampton, was sailing back to the UK from Antigua when it went missing.
The search was originally called off on Sunday but resumed on Tuesday.
The four missing crew members are Paul Goslin, 56, from West Camel, Somerset; skipper Andrew Bridge, 22, from Farnham; Steve Warren, 52, from Bridgwater; and 22-year-old James Male, from Romsey.
Patrick Michel, skipper of the Malisi, one of the volunteer crews searching for the missing yacht, said he had reported the positions of the debris and the time they were spotted to the US Coast Guard.

Mr Michel said a plank of wood, which could be a floorboard or part of a table, and a plastic board had been seen.
Mr Michel told BBC Radio 4's Today programme he did not know for certain what the items were but said "the grouping of these debris in the northern part of the search area could indicate that they are recent".
He added: "Until we get feedback from the owner who knows the boat, nothing can be confirmed."
'Exhausting' Coastguards said on Wednesday that about 9,000 square miles had been searched and there had been no sightings of a life-raft, debris or a boat during the day.
An RAF Hercules has joined the three planes and six ships already deployed to search the area where the sailors are thought to have disappeared - approximately 1,000 miles east of Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
A number of yachts have also joined the search.
Kay Coombes, Mr Warren's sister, told BBC Breakfast: "I think they've got a bit more of a clue now so hopefully the coastguard can plot that and get the ships to that area, so fingers crossed they can start searching there."
She said relatives of the missing sailors were staying positive.
"We are just keeping going. It's exhausting now, this has been going on for days."
The decision to resume the search followed an official request from the UK government. An online petition, set up to urge the US Coast Guard to resume the search, attracted more than 200,000 signatures.
US Coast Guard Capt Anthony Popiel has said no decision has been taken on when to suspend the search, and pledged that teams would continue to hunt for the Britons as if they were "looking for a member of our own family".
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Old 22-05-2014, 02:29   #225
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Re: UK yacht Cheeki Rafiki missing in mid-Atlantic

Quote:
Originally Posted by weavis View Post
Ted

As both a pilot and sailor (albeit a much closer to shore one) as are others here, and as someone moderately familiar with satellite and physical searches. as others are here.....and someone who can work out possible areas to look in from sea state and wind direction as others can here, and also someone who spent a large number of years working in emergency, it aint really 4000 square miles.

That is what is happening now to be sure to be sure and cover ground outside of the estimated area, to be sure to be sure. There are a shitload of boats in the area with electronics and visual scanning going on all the time.. The communication between the boats and aircraft and USCG is ongoing.

This is not a brotherhood. This is real life being worked by real people who dont know the 4 sailors but are concerned enough to risk their lives. This is a Coastguard with limited financial resources who afterwards, win or lose the search, will have to tally the cost and bear it. Winning is what we are "praying" for in the face of diminishing odds.

I dont know about you but at this stage, Prayer is about what is left to do, and Im not going to waste the time I could be doing that in arguing with your comments.

I will put it down to frustration and anxiety rather than vitriol and rebuke.
And yet you did anyway!
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