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Old 08-04-2013, 12:21   #46
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pirate Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Originally Posted by foolishsailor View Post
Phil,

Not directed at you or anyone else in particular - just a general update and maybe a bit of a frustration at how this forum deals with failure...

As much as I respect the ability to make any decision this hard, i will be bumping into this guy at the club at some point and have to ask my self, "What Will I say?"

Will I be the hardass and make him kiss the bosuns maiden or will I ask the questions we all have?

As my club, like most, is not a "bluewater" club if I gave out heaps people would look at me funny.

Maybe a good quiet dinner with just mates and himself and crew would give a good insight to what really happened.

If this happens I'll post the outcome.
I would not say anything... he's likely read all this crap already...
Put the hair back on... wondered WTF you were then,,
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Old 08-04-2013, 16:43   #47
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Phil,
Not directed at you or anyone else in particular - just a general update and maybe a bit of a frustration at how this forum deals with failure...
Yes, bad decisions, particularly multiple ones that lead to failure will be baldly criticised here (that's probably not unique to this forum).

Despite the raw criticism, I doubt there would be many members here that would not also feel sympathy for any cruiser in trouble or would not extend help were they in a position to do so (even at risk to themselves) regardless of how and why the problem had arisen.

Dissecting a situation that was badly handled does serve some purpose - we can all learn from the mistakes of others.

In this case, I bet everyone reading this thread will at least make sure they have plenty of spare handheld GPS batteries the next time they embark on a passage .
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Old 08-04-2013, 17:09   #48
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I've had a few hair raising moments sailing over the years and had friends involved in one or two abandons. I really think its the crew dynamic that makes the button get pushed , rather then any specific equipment failure short of sinking.

With a crew issue you rarely hear a true account of what happens. Often " things" are blamed whereas the problem was "people". I've seen tough crew struggle through virtually anything ( and I mean tough together crew , not experienced crew) , I ve seen competence skippers forced into rescues by in essence crew mutinies.

In my view this was a crew interaction. Issue not a boat thing. No one abandons a boat just cause the foods cold.

As for the "Irish" bit , I've never heard so much " *****" in my life. Some of the finest sailors ( and the toughest ) I know are Irish. I mean if you sail round that coast you can go anywhere.


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Old 09-04-2013, 01:11   #49
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

Obviously, it is difficult to criticize when I wasn't there. However (always an however)

Foolish - you say this is a very experienced coastal sailor. He can't be a good one. Contemplating a voyage at that time of year in those waters is , well foolish, unless it can't be avoided. Setting to sea (especially at that time of year) in an untried boat, that has been on the hard for a year, without spare fuel filters, only an Ipad for navigation etc etc is just not on.

No competent skipper will do that unless absolutely forced to.

He may have been right to push the big red button - but he was totally wrong to be out there in the first place.

I will be very interested to hear what he has to say when you speak with him.

Please keep us informed.
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Old 09-04-2013, 01:22   #50
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@dave - dont think i said the Irish werent good sailors, but the natural cavalier approach that permeates Irish culture seems to be exactly the approach taken by this Skipper.

@seaworthy - I agree, I started this thread with the hope that there would be a full dissection of this event. It is clear some seriois mistakes were made, my only real point of contention is around the decision to abandon ship.

Regardless of the mistakes that led to this point or the capabilities of crew and skipper, the decision to abandon has to be looked at in the context of what was going on. We can all say that if it was an imaginary skipper with vastly more experience and an imaginary crew that was young and fit and sxperienced that it would have been a mistake to abandon.

However that was not the situation.

My take from reading the article is that
1. The engine was not working
2. The headsail was shredded
3. They had already suffered serious knockdowns
4. The were underfed and exhausted
5. They had no radio
6. They had failing nav gear (ipad with low batteries)

Regardless of how they arrived at the above situation if you add this all together it seems logical to me that abandoning ship should be considered a serious option.
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Old 09-04-2013, 01:26   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
Obviously, it is difficult to criticize when I wasn't there. However (always an however)

Foolish - you say this is a very experienced coastal sailor. He can't be a good one. Contemplating a voyage at that time of year in those waters is , well foolish, unless it can't be avoided. Setting to sea (especially at that time of year) in an untried boat, that has been on the hard for a year, without spare fuel filters, only an Ipad for navigation etc etc is just not on.
This is exactly my point about being cavalier, it seems like they just hopped in a boat in the middle of winter for a quick sail to Bermuda... What could possibly happen?
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Old 09-04-2013, 04:17   #52
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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
But I heard that you can just use an ipad to sail around and that knowledge and actual use of paper and piloting are old hat.

lol
Isn't there an app available that converts seawater to freshwater?
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:37   #53
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

Quote:
Originally Posted by foolishsailor View Post
Regardless of the mistakes that led to this point or the capabilities of crew and skipper, the decision to abandon has to be looked at in the context of what was going on. We can all say that if it was an imaginary skipper with vastly more experience and an imaginary crew that was young and fit and sxperienced that it would have been a mistake to abandon.

However that was not the situation.

My take from reading the article is that
1. The engine was not working
2. The headsail was shredded
3. They had already suffered serious knockdowns
4. The were underfed and exhausted
5. They had no radio
6. They had failing nav gear (ipad with low batteries)

Regardless of how they arrived at the above situation if you add this all together it seems logical to me that abandoning ship should be considered a serious option.
And would the owner have thought this a reasonable option had he entrusted his boat to a delivery skipper and the boat was uninsured?

Unless life is at stake, I think it comes down to how much hardship the skipper is prepared to endure and prepared to expose his crew to. This is strongly influenced by the consequences of abandoning the boat.

Would the combination of the above six factors have have resulted in a significant risk to life or only a great deal of discomfort and a need for resourcefulness? Hard to say from the information we have.

I think in this case the owner simply decided the hardships and potential risks outweighed the drawbacks of the loss of a boat. This is a very personal equation. No lives were lost, so ultimately there is little to criticise with the decision to abandon.
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:54   #54
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pirate Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Originally Posted by Seaworthy Lass View Post
And would the owner have thought this a reasonable option had he entrusted his boat to a delivery skipper and the boat was uninsured?
Don't be silly... he'd sue the ass of the skipper for incompetence..
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:54   #55
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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I think in this case the owner simply decided the hardships and potential risks outweighed the drawbacks of the loss of a boat. This is a very personal equation. No lives were lost, so ultimately there is little to criticise with the decision to abandon.
Except, weren't they only 70 miles from Bermuda? Again, it is impossible to imagine how uncomfortable and nasty things were out there. I think I have an inkling having gone through some pretty bad stuff offshore (lost forestay, lost steering, parachute sea anchor stuff), but sitting here at my computer it is much easier to say this or that, while making the right decision out there is much, much more difficult.

One thing I may have missed in the account--did they try any techniques to stabilize things so they could catch their breath, maybe get some rest? I'm thinking of trailing warps, or a sea anchor, or heaving to? Sometimes you just need to get the boat more stable for a bit so you can tend to things like the stove not working.
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:04   #56
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Except, weren't they only 70 miles from Bermuda? Again, it is impossible to imagine how uncomfortable and nasty things were out there. I think I have an inkling having gone through some pretty bad stuff offshore (lost forestay, lost steering, parachute sea anchor stuff), but sitting here at my computer it is much easier to say this or that, while making the right decision out there is much, much more difficult.

One thing I may have missed in the account--did they try any techniques to stabilize things so they could catch their breath, maybe get some rest? I'm thinking of trailing warps, or a sea anchor, or heaving to? Sometimes you just need to get the boat more stable for a bit so you can tend to things like the stove not working.
No information on the techniques used, we only have a media reported account of the incident and that in itself may be inaccurate. Feedback from FoolishSailor when he chats to them would be interesting.

I get the impression that the decision was made reasonably cooly. Unlike the abandonment of Windigo, there was no panic involved, but simply a case of deciding that the hardships on board were greater than the hardship of the loss of the boat.
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:16   #57
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pirate Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

Just wish I could afford that option...
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:20   #58
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaworthy Lass View Post
And would the owner have thought this a reasonable option had he entrusted his boat to a delivery skipper and the boat was uninsured?
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Don't be silly... he'd sue the ass of the skipper for incompetence..
Or not pay him....

How could I help myself... really...
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:48   #59
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Or not pay him....
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How could I help myself... really...
Naughty but funny
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:50   #60
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Re: Abandon Ship! The Rescue of the Crew of Wolfhound

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Except, weren't they only 70 miles from Bermuda?

One thing I may have missed in the account--did they try any techniques to stabilize things so they could catch their breath, maybe get some rest? I'm thinking of trailing warps, or a sea anchor, or heaving to? Sometimes you just need to get the boat more stable for a bit so you can tend to things like the stove not working.
Difficult to know what they were going through - but I guess I'm with Kettlewell on this. Heaving to should give immediate relief. Certainly enough for them to take serious stock of the situation.

I don't know - just hard to imagine letting a good boat like that go adrift
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