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Old 02-12-2014, 02:12   #31
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

In one of those video clips, I think it was the skipper of another Volvo yacht standing-by during 'abandon ship' exercise, he uses derogatory hand signals for quotes (as we often do) when referring to the local "coast-guard" (cue fingers), to show how little respect he has for that "organization" (cue fingers again).

How ironic..

I wonder if anyone will bother to reimburse them for the fuel for the "lifeboat" (cue again..)
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:23   #32
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Originally Posted by Greg4cocokai View Post
Come on guys, we were on a 32nm scale of Phuket and almost hit some rocks 15nms from shore in deep water. Lucky I happened to see a fraction of breaking sea 100 yards ahead as I was talking to my wife, over here shoulder. Lucky I was back at the A/P and helm so we luckily missed it. WTF, it wasn't on the plotter! I zoomed in one click to 16nm and there was a tiny X. Better lucky than good!


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Mate- the reef in question was more than 30 nautical miles in length… And VERY well charted. There is zero excuse for this.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:33   #33
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Whoopsie...
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:37   #34
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Absolutely astonishing screw up. It will be interesting to hear the rationalisations and excuses, if any. Having competed in Ocean races on purpose built lean racers not dissimilar I can only surmise they were too focussed upon trim and squeezing the last few joules out of the rig to notice the approaching reef line. I also expect that there was an assumption between the tactician an skipper that the other had a handle on it. Finally, sometimes great expertise can make us blasé. I am a commercial skip and always keep to the basics, basics, basics. I am hardline to the point of once having a vessel under my command being nicknamed the 'DictatorShip'. That said I never raise my voice or similar, just insist on the likes of decklines on ANY night watch, laser flares attached to crew at all times etc. etc. Oh yes, and paper. And plotting all hazards within any reasonable distance of a projected trajectory. Ah well. I shall likely be in the area in question in the next year or two. I intend to anchor on the NW side of this reef if the vessel is still there (as I suspect it will be) and check out whatever's left...
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:46   #35
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

It's easy for me to second guess them, sitting in my chair here, nice and comfortable and fully rested. I have to think that fatigue must have played a big issue in their error. It wouldn't surprise me if they did know about the reef and islands but only had three guys on watch and no one at the nav station at the time. I would think the most likely thing is that the helmsman made a series of compounding course errors and ended up on the wrong side of the western tip of the shoals. Perhaps following the nav lights of the racers in front that had already passed the tip of the reef and cut back eastward. Considering the speed at which they likely went aground, I'm surprised (and pleased) there weren't more serious crew injuries. I hope they can save the boat to compete in future legs.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:48   #36
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Originally Posted by td0tz View Post
It happens in the best of families...
US Navy Minesweeper Runs Aground on Reef in the Philippines - ABC News

Srsly, the further off the mainstream, the less accurate / more obsolete the charts. The e-version is no better than the input, or GIGO.
You are quite right, in general. I have a photo of my current command a couple of months ago halfway up a mountain on Rinca island in the Komodo Archipelago of Southern Indonesia, more than half a mile inland! I have many more similar from the less sailed areas of the world… but in this case the charts were fine. The area was full of large, well marked and known hazards. The navigator and skipper are at fault. No two ways around it. They struck a reef more than 30nm in length around a third of the way along it. And, as the song once said: "There ain't no way around that!"
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:53   #37
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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It's easy for me to second guess them, sitting in my chair here, nice and comfortable and fully rested. I have to think that fatigue must have played a big issue in their error. It wouldn't surprise me if they did know about the reef and islands but only had three guys on watch and no one at the nav station at the time. I would think the most likely thing is that the helmsman made a series of compounding course errors and ended up on the wrong side of the western tip of the shoals. Perhaps following the nav lights of the racers in front that had already passed the tip of the reef and cut back eastward. Considering the speed at which they likely went aground, I'm surprised (and pleased) there weren't more serious crew injuries. I hope they can save the boat to compete in future legs.
Nice sentiment, but being that I live at sea and do most passages shorthanded in areas as tricky and far worse, I can't say I agree. There are numerous ways this could have been avoided with basic and routine practise. These practises failed to be adhered to. Smashing into the middle of a massively long reef line was the result. I mean… this wasn't an isolated rock… the reef is almost three times as long as Manhattan!
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:58   #38
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

They race, but do not know how to navigate! A stupid error IMHO.


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Old 02-12-2014, 08:22   #39
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

I bet that was a charter boat! This is what happens when those charter companies let anyone with a credit card get behind the helm!

(yes, it's a joke)
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:34   #40
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Originally Posted by chris in SG View Post
In one of those video clips, I think it was the skipper of another Volvo yacht standing-by during 'abandon ship' exercise, he uses derogatory hand signals for quotes (as we often do) when referring to the local "coast-guard" (cue fingers), to show how little respect he has for that "organization" (cue fingers again).

How ironic..

I wonder if anyone will bother to reimburse them for the fuel for the "lifeboat" (cue again..)
I also saw this interview and was confused by the "cost-guard" gesture. Maybe there is a story behind it, but it did look quite odd.
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:39   #41
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Originally Posted by Muckle Flugga View Post
Nice sentiment, but being that I live at sea and do most passages shorthanded in areas as tricky and far worse, I can't say I agree. There are numerous ways this could have been avoided with basic and routine practise. These practises failed to be adhered to. Smashing into the middle of a massively long reef line was the result. I mean… this wasn't an isolated rock… the reef is almost three times as long as Manhattan!

So when you are racing in the VOR in your 65 do you generally find the 8 man crew and typical 3 man rotation to be an issue or do you feel that the workload is managable?
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:40   #42
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

They do have pretty sweet gimbaled carbon fiber heads though. Nice to know they have their priorities in order.
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:48   #43
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

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Something tells me they don't even have paper charts on board.
See: http://www.volvooceanrace.com/en/photo-view/28975.html
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:00   #44
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Wow, lots of savaging of these poor guys in this thread and on pretty skimpy information too. The navigator has three Volvos to his credit, two as navigator, and 240,000 nm under his belt. He's no rookie. And the statements to date don't specifically state that the incident is the result of not zooming in all the way on their charts.

I'm willing to cut them some slack until a more complete picture comes to light, if it does at all.

As of yesterday: "Knut Frostad, Volvo Ocean Race CEO, said it was also not yet known why Nicholson’s crew had hit the reef, but this would be examined in due course."
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:16   #45
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Re: Team Vestas hits reef

Picture worth a thousand words. Sure looks to me like they were trying to "cut it close" to the island, didn't notice the reef.
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