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Old 05-12-2014, 13:09   #166
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

When using electronic charts important detail can disappear when the map is zoomed out.

This limitation can be easily overcome, but it is important to be aware of the potential problem.

I am sure the professional crew were well aware of this limitation. Everyone makes mistakes. I think this was simple mistake.

Professional racing sailors of this caliber have a very high workload. Their focus has to be to maximise boat speed. This can involve a track that is close to hazards. In addition they need to devote most of their energy to making the boat go faster. Weather maps and the optimal fastest route are all important for the navigator.

I have done some offshore races, but the level of commitment and risk at this level is very different. Now as a cruising sailor I simply give hazards like this a very wide berth, but this is a luxury that is not permissible when racing at the top level.

We need to accept that these sailors need to cut the margins finer. Perhaps an analogy worth considering is a F1 driver loosing control and crashing on a corner. To assume they have been incompetent because we drive to work everyday without similar problems is unfair.

The crew of team Vestas stuffed up, but with fatigue, and the overwhelming need to devote their efforts to making the boat go as fast a possible could any of us, consistently, do any better? Factor in a 19 knot boat speed where things happen rapidly and I think we are judging them unduly harshly.

They are pushing the envelope. Let us try and learn from their mistakes, rather than questioning their abilities.
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Old 05-12-2014, 13:21   #167
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Quote:
Originally Posted by clownfishsydney View Post
There was a lot of video on the TV News tonight in Sydney on this. It showed the video of them running aground and also the crew salvaging items from the wreck.

It was also claimed that they are going to salvage the boat, repair it and sail the next leg of the race. I think this is very, very optimistic. I doubt that they would even be able to salvage the boat off the reef given how remote it is, let alone repair it enough to continue racing.

Also someone mentioned that radar should have shown the reef. No way, the reef and island are so low there is very little chance that they would have sent back a reflection.
Clownfish, you are mistaken, the wave break on the reef does show well on radar. Not the actual reef structure, but the water droplets of the waves give a good return, and I have often used our radar to keep the boat a given distance off a reef. It does not show where the water is not breaking, but it is a great tool if you want to stay a particular distance off.

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Old 05-12-2014, 13:41   #168
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
When using electronic charts important detail can disappear when the map is zoomed out.

This limitation can be easily overcome, but it is important to be aware of the potential problem.

I am sure the professional crew were well aware of this limitation. Everyone makes mistakes. I think this was simple mistake.

Professional racing sailors of this caliber have a very high workload. Their focus has to be to maximise boat speed. This can involve a track that is close to hazards. In addition they need to devote most of their energy to making the boat go faster. Weather maps and the optimal fastest route are all important for the navigator.

I have done some offshore races, but the level of commitment and risk at this level is very different. Now as a cruising sailor I simply give hazards like this a very wide berth, but this is a luxury that is not permissible when racing at the top level.

We need to accept that these sailors need to cut the margins finer. Perhaps an analogy worth considering is a F1 driver loosing control and crashing on a corner. To assume they have been incompetent because we drive to work everyday without similar problems is unfair.

The crew of team Vestas stuffed up, but with fatigue, and the overwhelming need to devote their efforts to making the boat go as fast a possible could any of us, consistently, do any better? Factor in a 19 knot boat speed where things happen rapidly and I think we are judging them unduly harshly.

They are pushing the envelope. Let us try and learn from their mistakes, rather than questioning their abilities.
It's worth adding that everyone on the boat has multiple roles. The navigator is a sailor too, and is on a watch. Their workload is high as they are often taking care of the bulk of his navigation duties when they are off watch. If they were just getting through a storm then they were probably all pretty well exhausted. When you're racing you don't heave to or take a break. You're always looking for ways to make the boat go faster and that never stops, no matter what the weather, time of day, etc.
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Old 05-12-2014, 15:08   #169
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post

We need to accept that these sailors need to cut the margins finer. Perhaps an analogy worth considering is a F1 driver loosing control and crashing on a corner. To assume they have been incompetent because we drive to work everyday without similar problems is unfair.
.
Nolex, while I appreciate your kind sentiments, these guys are professionals and should be judged by a higher, not a lower standard!

They hit a named reef which has its own section in the Pilots.

If they did not read, tab and highlight that Pilot section beforehand,.... Then they simply did not do their homework!

Using your F1 analogy, these guys got lost on the race track and blamed it on the monitor on the steering wheel.

Nothing to learn from that amateur mistake.
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Old 06-12-2014, 16:47   #170
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

The best electronic charts in my mind are raster charts where a professional marine cartographer has put in a lot of thought of what to show. These are the charts that can be printed out but also visualized in a chart plotter. These charts would show the reef and island at all but the largest scale. NOAA raster charts are an example. I have never understood why people prefer them to vector charts where zoom level can hide many important features critical to safe navigation.

At this point we can only speculate if a zoom level error was responsible for the grounding. But it is a very possible reason. So what do others think about raster vs vector charts?



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Old 06-12-2014, 16:55   #171
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

I think you have made assumptions and used them as a baseline fact. Here is the CMAP vector chart of that region zoomed out to show the whole world.

The reef they hit is clearly visible (I marked it with a small red X), and remains visible at all zoom levels. This has nothing to do with raster/vector/paper/electronic.

I posted this earlier in the thread.

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Old 06-12-2014, 17:05   #172
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Right. But did they use C-Map charts? That seems to be your very own assumption. Someone else here pointed out that the island disappears on his vector charts.


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Old 06-12-2014, 17:08   #173
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

The Vestas guy originally said that, but I think he pulled that statement later. Navionics also shows the same as CMAP.

I don't know what charts they were using, but this isn't a raster/vector/paper/electronic issue. It was just a screwup is all. That reef is the size of Manhattan Island and accurately charted - no way it is a chart problem regardless of type of chart.

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Old 06-12-2014, 17:12   #174
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

I have, ahem, a perhaps not authentic copy of cm93 (2011) charts running on OpenCPN that I have on my PC just for checking stuff out from the comfort of my desk chair and lo and behold, not only does the chart not show anything other than clear ocean at the accident location at most zoom levels, it only ever shows the NW tip of the reef at one or two overzoom levels. I find this a bit of an eye opener, actually, because I suspect more than a few budget cruisers use these charts and, although for the most part they seem accurate enough, it makes me wonder how many other "issues" there may be.
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Old 06-12-2014, 17:49   #175
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
I have, ahem, a perhaps not authentic copy of cm93 (2011) charts running on OpenCPN that I have on my PC just for checking stuff out from the comfort of my desk chair and lo and behold, not only does the chart not show anything other than clear ocean at the accident location at most zoom levels, it only ever shows the NW tip of the reef at one or two overzoom levels. I find this a bit of an eye opener, actually, because I suspect more than a few budget cruisers use these charts and, although for the most part they seem accurate enough, it makes me wonder how many other "issues" there may be.
But there are still the pilot guides, which clearly warn about the area. Even an amateur sailor, I would hope, would at least take a peek at any available pilot guides for the area they are going into, especially if it was new to them.

They don't even cost any money. Here is the US Navy one. Go to page 129, and the warning is right there, as posted earlier.

http://msi.nga.mil/MSISiteContent/St...1/Pub171bk.pdf
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Old 06-12-2014, 18:41   #176
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

This is my take on how I believe the ECS problem has developed.

Please correct me if I am wrong!

1 Paper charts have evolved over the centuries and were corrected in conjunction with the printed sailing directions and pilots that together became the working tools of navigators.

2 Awareness of relative positions of Topography, Dangers and Soundings are quite reliable if you can combine the detailed charts from all the hydrographic agencies

3 Electronic Charts and the competing navigation programs are in their commercial formative years, each trying to find the right price point, process speed that will win the financial game.

4 Government Hydrographic agencies like DMA and Admiralty are hoping the private sector will take over the costly process of converting to E Charts.

5 Competitive Chart Formats just add to the consumer's confusion

6 I have yet to find an independent assessment of the level of detail and coverage E Charts offer compared to existing detail harbour charts from all the world's hydrographic agencies.

7 This smells like collusion between the regulatory agencies and the developers


So there is a real danger in developing a false myopic sense of security with ECS unless the consumer demands a 100% detail coverage of topography and soundings on E Charts that already exist on paper charts.
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Old 06-12-2014, 19:08   #177
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

personally I think it is just a publicity stunt....there is no way 8 sailors with over a million sea miles between themselves could have been unaware of this extensive bank of shoals and reefs................
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Old 06-12-2014, 19:20   #178
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
I have, ahem, a perhaps not authentic copy of cm93 (2011) charts running on OpenCPN that I have on my PC just for checking stuff out from the comfort of my desk chair and lo and behold, not only does the chart not show anything other than clear ocean at the accident location at most zoom levels, it only ever shows the NW tip of the reef at one or two overzoom levels. I find this a bit of an eye opener, actually, because I suspect more than a few budget cruisers use these charts and, although for the most part they seem accurate enough, it makes me wonder how many other "issues" there may be.
Interesting! I have 2006,2010 and 2011 updates. They all show big shallow areas when zoomed out, but no detail. But when zooming in, the 2006 and 2010 show great detail of the whole reef and island complex. As you say, the 2011 version has cropped off most of the detail. This is one of the problems with these charts: as one goes between versions, detail areas come and go. We've seen this in the Vanuatu area in particular... can be disconcerting and drive one back to looking at the older paper charts that we carry.

But as many have said (me included) this stranding wasn't a charting error...

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Old 06-12-2014, 19:35   #179
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Agreed little doubt it's a charting error. I don't even know what brand of chart chip I have in my Lowrance plotter onboard, but I always zoom in and out when plotting a course as I have experienced a situation where a nasty solitary rock that just poked out at low tide was prominently marked on the paper chart but only showed when zoomed on the plotter.

Makes me wonder why they don't, with all the other technology on board, give the helmsmen a small chartplotter of his own to use for navigation at the helm.
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Old 06-12-2014, 19:49   #180
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Interesting! I have 2006,2010 and 2011 updates. They all show big shallow areas when zoomed out, but no detail. But when zooming in, the 2006 and 2010 show great detail of the whole reef and island complex. As you say, the 2011 version has cropped off most of the detail. This is one of the problems with these charts: as one goes between versions, detail areas come and go. We've seen this in the Vanuatu area in particular... can be disconcerting and drive one back to looking at the older paper charts that we carry.

But as many have said (me included) this stranding wasn't a charting error...

Jim
This seems to confirm that they have taken the pressure off of Government regulating and the quality of detail is now a commercial one.

Seems to me this presents a good business opportunity for someone to high quality scan all the detail paper charts and index in a Lat/Long format
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