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Old 11-06-2009, 08:19   #1
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Whale Sinks UK Vessel - Details?

Headline:"British couple's yacht sunk by whale in Caribbean"

British couple's yacht sunk by whale in Caribbean - Telegraph
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Old 11-06-2009, 16:21   #2
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Interesting. The article says the boat hit the whale, not the other way.

I would like to know what boat, what part of the boat connected with the whale, and why water ingress could not be stopped.

There is something to be learned here.
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Old 11-06-2009, 17:05   #3
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Here is a recent story I came across about whale strikes. Sometimes size does matter.

Humpback struck by oil tanker near Valdez

Humpback struck by oil tanker near Valdez: Marine Wildlife | adn.com
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Old 11-06-2009, 17:24   #4
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Those are some great photos within the link.

As I enjoy doing for others, I'd suggest anyone interested in this story to read a book on the original story of ship-whale interaction. Actually, the whale rammed the old vessel and sunk her, hence the years later story of "Moby Dick."

Read the true tale.

"The Wreck of the Whale Ship Essex," by Own Chase. The event happened in the year 1820. The crew's survival depended upon navigating their small whale boats which were essentially life boats without provisions.
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Old 11-06-2009, 17:46   #5
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When I used to live in Anchorage, AK a humpback beached itself dead at the end of Turnagain Arm. Oh my goodness the stench. Unbelievable. Really unbelievable.
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Old 11-06-2009, 22:53   #6
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It would be nice to know if the whale was sleeping on the surface when it was struck. I have known two yachts that struck whales on the surface, and neither of them sustained damage.

The article does not reveal critical details as to the location and extent of hull damage. It says they tried to stuff cushions in the hole to keep the boat afloat. This is hard for me to visualize. A hole big enough to stuff a cushion in would sink a yacht in a matter of minutes, and the article says that "within an hour, the 47 ft vessel filled with water." Then it goes on to say the boat capsized and sank five hours after the collision.

The article does a disservice to this cruising couple because what is written does not make sense.

I remember when I read the account of the sinking of Resurgam in the Gulf Stream off Fort Lauderdale. The article tells about a mysterious leak that sunk the boat, and that the skipper, Web Chiles, swam in the water for more than 12 hours before he was rescued. When I read that account, I said to myself that the magazine story did not make sense. I couldn't believe that an experienced sailor like Chiles could not stem the leak that could save his yacht. It wasn't until years later that I read a follow up story where Chiles recounted that he had been suffering from depression and intentionally scuttled Resurgam in the Gulf Stream thinking that he was going to die. As I recall, he opened a seacock and let the boat fill with water. Fortunately, his will to live overcame his desire to die.

I'm not saying that this couple scuttled their boat. I'm saying that they need to give a more complete story to the newspaper so that the story makes better sense. With every sinking of a yacht, there are lessons to be learned.
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Old 12-06-2009, 01:01   #7
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Last year a catamaran had to be abandoned north of the Carribean when a whale surfaced under it and jammed one of the sail drives through the hull. Don't know whether the boat actually sunk but both hulls flooded when water migrated through the bridge deck to the other hull. A water tight bulkhead would have stopped the one hull from flooding. Sealing off the bridge deck so the water couldn't cross over to the other hull probably would have kept them from having to abandon the boat.

The whale was pretty severely injured by the way. Apparently it was surfacing quite fast and impaled itself on the sail drive.

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Old 12-06-2009, 10:09   #8
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Media doesn't always get it right....

Quote:
Originally Posted by maxingout View Post
It would be nice to know if the whale was sleeping on the surface when it was struck. I have known two yachts that struck whales on the surface, and neither of them sustained damage.

.... I'm saying that they need to give a more complete story to the newspaper so that the story makes better sense. With every sinking of a yacht, there are lessons to be learned.
The sailors themselves likely gave a perfectly understandable explanation of all that happened and the reporter simply failed to report it in the same manner.

I once read an article in which the reporter described a "steel bar,' which sounded as if rebar were being discussed, but upon viewing the attached photo it became apparent that the reporter was actually describing an I-Beam.
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:15   #9
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Yes, I was pretty sure the report itself was full of garbage but I am interested in what really happened. I'd be curious to know what came apart that caused the loss of the vessel, or even, what type of boat was it?
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:56   #10
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OT whale story:

The first summer cruise we ever did, in a chartered Catalina 30 in Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska, we came upon a breaching humpback about 3/4 mile away. We were on the outside of a bay which had a submerged rock so I didn't want to enter until the tide lowered and uncovered the rock. So we were there just drifting.

The whale kept breaching, closer and closer, each jump in line to hit us eventually. We just drifted and watched in awe.

When the whale started getting too close for comfort, I turned on the motor just to let the whale know we were there.

It kept breaching closer and closer. Finally, it breached real close, and we all got wet from the spray. The next breach was scheduled to land exactly on top the little (very little compared to the whale) Catalina. My wife was screaming madly to drive the boat into the bay, but I keep thinking that whales are sentient beings; it knew we were there and did not want to jump on us. I figured I had better odds with the whale than the submerged rock.

We held our breaths, waiting for the outcome, my wife running down below holding the one year old, while the five year old and I waited topside to see what would happen.

Seconds slowed to minutes. My knees went a bit weak. My breathing got funny. It was really intense. Not everday you get to see if a whale is gonna jump on you.








Nothing. The whale stopped breaching for a full hour. Started up about two miles away. Every time I hear about whales, I re-live that experience.

I've had other experiences with whales, Orcas and Humpbacks. I feel a special connection to them.
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Old 12-06-2009, 12:12   #11
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Yes there is something to be learned here, make sure you have something to patch holes with onboard and have a decent sized pump.
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Old 12-06-2009, 13:48   #12
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As a youngster I was a deckhand on a salmon troller out of Uclulet BC and saw whales breaching fairly ofter but only in the distance. We had Orcas pass very close, 30-40ft, several times. Numerous times I was followed by seals and once by an otter when I rowed back and forth to town in my little boat.

On a canoe trip to Quait Bay, up behind Mears Island on the west side of Vancouver Island I was watching Grey Whales feeding all over the bay. One kept surfacing and diving(not breaching) closer and closer to me in my 16ft Sears canoe.

It gently surfaced one time within 20ft and with one light paddle stroke I was next to it and touched its back with my hand for a couple of seconds. Probably a really dumb idea but it seemed to my (still bullet proof) 17yo mind the thing to do.

Looking back over 33yrs I'm still impressed with how careful the whale seemed to be. I had watched it as it dived and with the exception of this one time it always lifted its tail far out of the water. This time it sort of drifted away and sank from sight coming up about a quarter mile away to resume its tail showing feeding dives.

I believed then and still do that it was having a look at what "I" was doing and on finding me not very interesting went back to its business...........m
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Old 12-06-2009, 14:08   #13
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A link to their web site, and their own version of events

Helen Mary Gee – Around the world

Quite a moving story
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Old 12-06-2009, 14:40   #14
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A link to their web site, and their own version of events

Helen Mary Gee – Around the world

Quite a moving story

Thanks for the find! Seems the boat was a Sovereign 470, one of eight? Its also interesting that in their account they don't mention what they hit. Just that they hit "something".
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