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Old 04-04-2020, 04:28   #1
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Exclamation S/V Charlie, West Africa

Good afternoon all, I hope this email finds you well!

I am sorry to bother, but I was wondering if you could help me. My father, Gerard Westmeijer is travelling from Walvisbay, Namibia over to The Gambia and I can't find him on AIS. He left the 11th of March and should have stopped at Saint Helena as well as Ascension Island, but believe he is aiming straight for the Gambia to get home as quick as possible, given the whole lock down scenarios worldwide. I cannot find him on AIS. His MMSI is 244690818, S/V Charlie registered in The Netherlands. Would you mind trying to call him on the VHF or assist by searching from your systems, which are better than mine. The last position that I have of Charlie as taken at 06:36 on 28 March is Latitude 2.112663, Longitude -11.54033, approximately 657 miles North of Ascension. Course 30.1 degrees, Speed 3.2 knts. Heading 0 degrees. I believe him to be around Liberia or Guinea.

Thank you in advance.
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Old 04-04-2020, 05:47   #2
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Marco.
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Old 04-04-2020, 05:48   #3
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Thank you Gord, hope to help where I can.
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Old 04-04-2020, 05:56   #4
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Not sure what the weather has been during the last week, but today and for the next few days there are very light winds in the area.

https://www.windy.com/?7.158,-17.397,6
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Old 04-04-2020, 05:59   #5
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Hi Pete, thank you, I have been tracking the winds as well and it really doesnt help the situation. However, he should have been at port some time ago.
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Old 04-04-2020, 06:10   #6
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Looks like there are two vessels with that AIS number which won't help. However, since the yacht is registered under the Dutch flag, you might give your coast guard a ring to see what they can do.

VHF isn't going to work as its only got a rough 25 mile range. You will need HF but that only works if is also has it and is listening.

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Old 04-04-2020, 06:15   #7
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Thank you Pete, I logged it with Boat Watch already as well as Search and rescue contacts. Any other thoughts, please do not hesitate.
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Old 04-04-2020, 17:42   #8
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Here is sv Charlie:

https://www.marinetraffic.com/en/ais...vessel:CHARLIE
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Old 04-04-2020, 17:44   #9
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Oh. I found a pay site. Sorry about that.
It is probably not helpful.
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Old 04-04-2020, 17:59   #10
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Here is another. But it is far behind in tracking.

https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels...MMSI-244690818
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Old 05-04-2020, 02:28   #11
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Thank you, for everyones help.
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Old 05-04-2020, 05:23   #12
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Also listed on boatwatch.org

https://boatwatch.org/current-watche...bia-to-gambia/
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Old 05-04-2020, 21:47   #13
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Re: S/V Charlie, West Africa

Marco,

You've done a great job. I don't know whether you've ever done any sailing, or long passages, but one generally gets into one's own shipboard routine, and then goes with the flow. So, "going straight home," may mean keeping the boat pointed in generally the right direction, and not motoring through the horse latitudes. It is a region where it can be very, very slow, even for a fast boat. Some of us rather enjoy having our progress at the whim of the weather gods, and would not be motor sailing to keep speed up; others do motor-sail predominantly. If he belongs to the former group, in his mind, he's still going straight home; just like the motor-sailing guy would be, but his overall daily runs will be much shorter.

Even one small, corroded electrical connection, and his AIS may not be getting out, and he wouldn't know it. They can also get joggled loose, and his signal still wouldn't be getting out. When he is well inside the 15-20 mi. VHF is reliable over, he will probably contact his destination that way, but it depends on what other comms he has had with them, and whether he thinks he needs to. If he's like us, he's extremely independent, sometimes leading to relatives aggravation. Some of us do all our pre-contact with the authorities via on board e-mail, and wouldn't be on the VHF about it unless requiring directions to the quarantine dock.

I hope you hear from him soon.

Ann
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