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Overlord 03-03-2013 18:06

Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Yesterday, 18:56 * #13
chris smith
Registered User


Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Circumnavigating
Boat: 2003 Leopard 47
Posts: 340
Re: Leopard 46 destroyed in collision
Ok ...here is the story

1st March 2013, 05:50 PM
catabroker
Senior Member
*
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 76
Re: Leopard 43 Sinks
Hello Forum,

I checked with the USCG and this was not a Leopard 43, but a 2006 Leopard 46 (hull 005).

This was the second time the yacht was involved in an accident in less than a year. Back in 2011 the yacht hit a reef in the eastern Caribbean but was able to ‘limp’ back to Ft Lauderdale where she was repaired at Lauderdale Marine Center. I don’t know if that was with the same crew or not.

I am quite surprised that the Captain did not feel any impact when they hit ‘something’. If you ever hit the dock while docking at low speed, you feel the whole boat shake, I would expect an impact like this would throw one out of his bunk, or at least the helmsman would notice.

A few years ago another Leopard 46 catamaran went over a reef in Cuba and lost most of both keels / rudders, had a few holes in the bottom but did not go down and managed to sail back to FL for repairs. The pdf file is posted on this forum under "Leopard catamarans"



Below the Captain’s report:

…As delivery captain of the sailing catamaran “Palenque”, we departed Barefoot Cay, Roatan, Honduras, bound for Provodenciales in the Turks and Caicos on Tuesday, 27 November, 2012 at 0600 Local Time (UTC -6). On board were the following crew members:

Dale Cheek, US Passport #
Leonard T, US Passport #
Richard W, US Passport #
Anneli the Seadog, US Canine

At approximately 2345 on 28 Nov, 2012 I was awakened from my bunk by the on-watch crew member, Rick W, who reported that the bilge pump indicator light was remaining ON longer than usual. When I got out of my bunk I immediately saw the cabin sole was awash in both the forward and aft cabins. I awoke the other crew member, Len T, and set him to work on the manual bilge pump. I instructed Rick, at the helm, to move the throttle to NEUTRAL and to come below to assist with the issue. I closed all the below-the-waterline seacocks in the starboard hull. Briefly we used the two shower sumps electric pumps to extract the water, but this proved fruitless. The water level continued to rise. I entered the sea with snorkel gear and underwater flashlight to assess the problem. On the outer side of the starboard hull just forward of the leading edge of the keel, I noticed a large area (approx. 1 sq mtr) of exposed foam coring and obvious sign of heavy impact as seen in the scraped bottom paint. The exposed foam started just below the waterline and extended down to the monolithic laminations at the centerline of the hull.

I exited the water and at approximately 0045 on 29 Nov, 2012 I activated all of our emergency apparatuses which included a 406 MHz EPIRB, a SPOT transender, and a DSC VHF emergency alert. I attempted to call the boat owner on his cell phone by the boat’s satphone, but was unable to connect. I called my roommate in Florida to make initial shore contact. At approximately 0100 I received a satphone call from the Spot Coordination Center verifying the emergency.

We decided to attempt to maneuver the genoa sail over the hull damage. While again snorkeling overboard to effect this, I heard a low flying aircraft overhead at approx. 0155. When the sail maneuver proved unworkable and I exited the water which, by this time, had flooded the starboard engine room and was washing the cockpit. Len reported that the CG had called to verify names and situation. I gave the “prepare to abandon ship” order. At approximately 0230 we, including the dog, abandoned ship for the life raft.

Safely in the raft, we cut the painter connecting us to “Palenque”. By this time she was down heavily by the stern with water flooding the interior. Within 5 minutes more, the deck light was extinguished and we could no longer see her.

Thanks to a waterproof VHF handheld radio, we were able to communicate with the US Navy P3 Orion aircraft overhead and the container vessel “Cap Domingo” which the P3 had instructed to come for us. By 0f400 we all four were safely aboard the “Cap Domingo”.


Captain Dale’s bio can be seen online: Stock's Yacht Service - worldwide deliveries





Peter Wiersema, CPYB
Leopard Catamarans new and pre owned

Leopard Catamaran Salesman of the Year 2003 - 2012

Mobile +1 954 260 4913

peterw@yacht.com
__________________
*

Khagan1227 03-03-2013 18:16

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Glad they made it off ok, too bad about the vessel.

Can't imagine they hit something big enough to sink the boat and not be felt.

Sounds like the crew stayed calm, especially the captain, which helped then debark safely.

caradow 07-03-2013 17:42

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Wow, how does that happen without the obvious sounds/feeling of hitting something?
Maybe the result of a bad fix from the accident in the previous year and the boat just delaminated?
It would be interesting to know if the previous accident involved the same area on the hull.
Doesn't make sense otherwise.
Glad the crew is safe.

Palarran 07-03-2013 19:33

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Good hypothesis Caradow. How many bilge pumps would have been activated on your cat in the same situation? I would have had 4 in three seperate mostly watertight bulkheads. I would think you could have three going in a short period so the water ingress seems extreme for delamination.

It must have been near calm conditions to snorkel in the middle of the night to check this out. And she actually sank - very unusual.

Doe818 12-03-2013 03:43

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
"I noticed a large area (approx. 1 sq mtr) of exposed foam coring"

and here I thought leopards weren't foam construction at all.....hmmmm

Factor 12-03-2013 04:00

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Yeah - I saw that as well, far as I know they are all balsa? Which is fine provided you keep water away from it. Which may not have happened after its previous issue - which may have affected its buoyancy?

ausaviator 12-03-2013 15:04

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Have you got a link for the photo of what looks like foam core? Balsa sandwich can look quite similar to foam core when torn apart.

smj 12-03-2013 15:09

Quote:

Originally Posted by ausaviator (Post 1183306)
Have you got a link for the photo of what looks like foam core? Balsa sandwich can look quite similar to foam core when torn apart.

From what I read the capt. Got a view of the "foam core" while under the boat trying to save it from sinking. Probably an honest mistake.

Factor 12-03-2013 15:48

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ausaviator (Post 1183306)
Have you got a link for the photo of what looks like foam core? Balsa sandwich can look quite similar to foam core when torn apart.

No photo - I was referring to what the post #1 said that the bloke on the boat said:

Quote:

On the outer side of the starboard hull just forward of the leading edge of the keel, I noticed a large area (approx. 1 sq mtr) of exposed foam coring and obvious sign of heavy impact as seen in the scraped bottom paint. The exposed foam started just below the waterline and extended down to the monolithic laminations at the centerline of the hull.

tuskie 13-03-2013 01:22

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by smj (Post 1183313)
From what I read the capt. Got a view of the "foam core" while under the boat trying to save it from sinking. Probably an honest mistake.

:thumb: That's correct SMJ, according to his account it was at night, viewed through a face mask, illuminated by a waterproof flashlight whilst diving under a sinking boat. Under these circumstances we can forgive a misidentification of core materials.

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 01:51

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Find it hard to understand the boat sinking, surely forepeaks and the other engine room would have assisted flotation some?

Not same design but the two Lagoons with their arses ripped out in the Caribbean were still floating and that was both hulls.

'Tis good they survived ok 'tis bad the boat is gone!

catabroker 13-03-2013 07:41

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
1 Attachment(s)
On other forums there have been further discussions to this unfortunate event.

Fact: the boat hit a reef last year, she was holed and was repaired in Honduras in exactly the same spot as where the 'hole' was observed by the captain.

It is believed that the repair job was an extremely lousy one, and failed when the boat was crashing into waves. As the skipper nor crew felt any impact of hitting something, and the hole was large and in the same spot, this is likely the cause. Maybe the layers of fibre-glass that were added came of like when you pull of a band-aid? Maybe the yard did not bond it properly or used materials that are not compatible and the repair did not bond well?

As for the comparisons with the 2 x Lagoon's that had their bottom's torn off on a reef and remained afloat: They both sat on a reef on the remainder of their structure. Large inflatable balloons were attached all around these yachts to keep them floating and bring them back to a boat yard where they were hauled out. If they would have simply pulled them of the reef, they would likely have gone down very quickly.

As for the Leopard 46', there is a large crash box forward that is water tight, and specifically designed to take the impact of a front collision with a semi submerged object.

Attached a document that describes how another leopard 46 survived an encounter with a reef:

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 07:49

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
My point was i doubt any cat would sink totally due to one hull being holed regardless of design. Were both hulls previously repaired?

gbanker 13-03-2013 07:51

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Catabroker : what other forums behave discussions of this event?

Southern Star 13-03-2013 08:00

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
While extremely unlikely in the case of a capsize, make no mistake - some cats can sink. In this case, if one hull filled to the point that water was also over the bridgedeck, it would then flood the other hull. Some cats will have sufficient bouyancy, even in those circumstances, to remain afloat, but others do not. Those made from solid glass (such as some of the early British cats) would be especially susceptible. Furthermore, some boats with crash bulkheads and flotation compartments have had holes drilled through them for wiring, etc., which of course will defeat the purpose.

Brad

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 08:12

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Excerpt from Rolf in 10foot of water.The help and emotional support we received from everybody in the next few days was enormous. It helped us a lot dealing with the trauma. The first night we were worried that the fuel tanks with 200+ gallons (900 litres) of diesel would rupture. We could here the wind pick up more and the wave size increasing overnight. Up till then I had hoped that with the falling tide the additional damage would not be too big, and the salvage vessel was already underway. However, by the next morning she had been pounded over the reef into 10 feet of water. In the process the starboard hull had developed a hole the full length of the two bath rooms (4m or 12') and bout 1 m (3') wide. Looking down the stairs gave a pretty view of the sea bottom. The rudders had been ripped off, but the shafts were in place. The port sail drive was pushed in a little bit, so it leaked. The port fwd compartment was bone dry. The water was above the cockpit table and the stern was exposed to the waves coming over the reef, with the water splashing up to the ceiling .

My point is with a fwd and aft compartment intact as in both the Lagoon and Leopard designs i find it hard to understand them sinking unless those compartments were themselves all vented.

Wiring holes etc will only allow slow ingress of water but likewise air must displace, that on a cat is a slow process.

We are talking of a modern boat.

Cheers

Palarran 13-03-2013 08:17

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
It looks like most of the posters on this tread are cat owners so this is relevent.

What Brad just posted about water tight bulkheads not really being water tight should be checked on all cats. There have been two cats sunk or flooded due to electrical conduits allowing water to freely flow from one compartment to another. After reading about these, I inspected Palarran and did find three such conduits running through my engine compartment into my cabin area. I don't think the flow would have been enough to sink the boat if someone was aboard but would if unoccupied. I filled mine with silicone.

Also, why on a boat this size you would not have a super large capacity Rule pump with 8' of hose and 50' long power wiring for emergency use is beyond me.

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 08:21

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Pallaran you are right, I'm thinking a 240 volt sump pump connected directly to the generator in each hull with 2 inch hosing to under bridgedeck so they alone can be activated from the genset without going to the main board and will run till the genset either runs out of ships fuel or is drowned... Cheers

Palarran 13-03-2013 08:26

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
12 volt or 240 volt - which would be better? Now that is one question that hasn't been discussed on the CF before (as far as I remember).

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 08:36

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Since Rolf's unfortunate loss i've been re-newing insurers and for the Atlantic crossing that we plan on doing in 2014 they said they required 1500GPH (Warranted)bilge pumps to be fitted.

Almost every grounding that you read about they await some salvage pumps so to satisfy the obvious my line of thought goes like this :-
1. The gen-set is level with the decks.
2. The gen-set is fed by the ships tanks.
3. A 240 volt submersible sump pump far out performs any chandler's bilge pump.
4. Fit 2 with 2 or 3 inch piping out letting high up under the bridge deck.
5. Wire directly to the gen-set without going to the board below by a selector switch beside the gen-set.
6. Optimise GPH to match output of gen-set in our case 6kva at 240 volts.

It would buy precious moments and be superior to 12 volt where the batteries are mounted in the bilge anyway?

Just my thoughts bought on by recent occurrences and insurers requirements.

Cheers

Palarran 13-03-2013 09:13

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
The previous owner of Palarran had quite a few bilge pumps fitted. I have two 2000 gph pumps per hull in the main cabin. In addition I have one 2000 gph in each engine compartment and one 500 gph pump in each stern compartment. I also have an additional 2000 gph pump with a short hose attached so I can run it to a port hole. All of these do require 12 volts though. If we loose 12 volts, I guess it is manning the manual pumps and buckets. I have not seen 240 volt pumps with very high capacity.

For my Atlantic crossing we went with the mantra "Keep the water on the outside, the sailors on the inside, and the mast in the air". Repeat daily, hourly when in a gale. My insurance didn't have any pump requirements but who cares - you have to have it.

Lagoon4us, I hope to run (not literaly) into you this summer. We will be in Croatia for June and the Ionian's for July. Our plan is nearly in place and I'm going to post it on my Croatia thread. I hope you will review it and give me some last bits of advice.
David.

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 09:21

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
David we are heading for Greece around mid July stopping at Corfu for slipping etc. Absolutely want to catch up. Another Aussie Col Darling on board a Lagoon 440 will take our place here 'Finally My Darling' is the boats name.

Great Mantra!!!!!!

Frank

oldjags 13-03-2013 09:55

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lagoon4us (Post 1184005)
Pallaran you are right, I'm thinking a 240 volt sump pump connected directly to the generator in each hull with 2 inch hosing to under bridgedeck so they alone can be activated from the genset without going to the main board and will run till the genset either runs out of ships fuel or is drowned... Cheers

Not a bad idea. I bought a cheap 110v pump that will run from my Honda 2000 generator just as an absolute last-ditch, desperate measure in case all other options have failed.

Here's a source for high-volume, submersible pumps that could be powered by most on-board generators, and will move a lot more water than a 12v pump. Submersible Water Pumps 80 GPM & Above - Contractors Direct

Lagoon4us 13-03-2013 09:58

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Plumbed in ready to go with no mucking around, one in each hull flick the switch start the gen-set and pump away. Pumps such as these will out do any 12volt pump and will keep going well after the batteries are engulfed....

Cheers

kutoroka 13-03-2013 14:47

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Perhaps the owner of the Leopard had really good insurance and didn't like the way the boat had been repaired :devil:

Cormorant 13-03-2013 15:32

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
I don't know if this has been posted yet, but it's very sobering. A table of the flooding rate per hole diameter, by depth below waterline.

It comes in faster than you might think. A 4" hole 10" below the waterline will give you 1000 gallons per minute.

https://www.bethandevans.com/pdf/Hole...odingtable.pdf

Cotemar 13-03-2013 16:32

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
1 Attachment(s)
Some Cats just keep floating until someone brings it home to dry out.

Catamaran calamity but she is still floating.

YIKES! It had no mast, the salon door was open; it was swamped. Clearly a Fontaine Pajot, French-built cat in the upper thirty to lower forty foot range. You don’t see this everyday!
I inquired around the island the next day to learn the cat was abandoned in terrible weather somewhere near the Bahamas and was left dismasted to its own devices. It had just been found the day before, seventeen miles north of San Andres in the open sea, drifting westward in the currents and trade winds.
However disturbing the scene, the incident is a testament to the “unsinkable” rating of European-built catamarans. Brands such as Lagoon, Fontaine Pajot, and Catana utilize watertight bulkheads, foam sandwich construction, and other buoyant materials that actually qualify their cats to be certified unsinkable.
When you think about it, that’s pretty darn nifty! Not all cats are created equal and some catamaran brands are not certified to meet unsinkable standards and will not remain floating if totally swamped. Those “Brand X” cats will plummet to the bottom if they take on too much water. It’s a good question to ask when shopping for a cruising catamaran.
And the proof is in the pudding. The Fontaine Pajot full of water drifted across the WILD and rough central and western Caribbean and there she sits, still on the surface.

dirkdig 13-03-2013 18:05

The proof is in the French pudding!

Good to have confidence in your boat to stay with it instead of jumping into a little liferaft

smj 13-03-2013 18:43

Quote:

Originally Posted by dirkdig (Post 1184535)
The proof is in the French pudding!

Good to have confidence in your boat to stay with it instead of jumping into a little liferaft

More than one report of a Lagoon sinking?

Factor 13-03-2013 19:11

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
There are many many many stories of cats left abandoned turning up later. From RAMTHA (a simpson) in Pacific Rescue/NZ Queens Birthday storm to the Spirited 380 in the coral sea last year, to A fastback 43 off Lord Howe some years ago - the owner went a little off the planet and actively tried to sink the boat and it still wouldn't go down. The sinking of a reasonably built cat is by far the exception rather than the rule.

44'cruisingcat 13-03-2013 19:30

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Cotemar (Post 1184449)
Some Cats just keep floating until someone brings it home to dry out.

Catamaran calamity but she is still floating.

YIKES! It had no mast, the salon door was open; it was swamped. Clearly a Fontaine Pajot, French-built cat in the upper thirty to lower forty foot range. You don’t see this everyday!
I inquired around the island the next day to learn the cat was abandoned in terrible weather somewhere near the Bahamas and was left dismasted to its own devices. It had just been found the day before, seventeen miles north of San Andres in the open sea, drifting westward in the currents and trade winds.
However disturbing the scene, the incident is a testament to the “unsinkable” rating of European-built catamarans. Brands such as Lagoon, Fontaine Pajot, and Catana utilize watertight bulkheads, foam sandwich construction, and other buoyant materials that actually qualify their cats to be certified unsinkable.
When you think about it, that’s pretty darn nifty! Not all cats are created equal and some catamaran brands are not certified to meet unsinkable standards and will not remain floating if totally swamped. Those “Brand X” cats will plummet to the bottom if they take on too much water. It’s a good question to ask when shopping for a cruising catamaran.
And the proof is in the pudding. The Fontaine Pajot full of water drifted across the WILD and rough central and western Caribbean and there she sits, still on the surface.

I'm surprised how much of a bow down angle that boat has. I'd have expected the weight of the engines to cause a stern down attitude.

transmitterdan 13-03-2013 19:32

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Cormorant (Post 1184395)
I don't know if this has been posted yet, but it's very sobering. A table of the flooding rate per hole diameter, by depth below waterline.

It comes in faster than you might think. A 4" hole 10" below the waterline will give you 1000 gallons per minute.

https://www.bethandevans.com/pdf/Hole...odingtable.pdf

I think the table has depth in feet so it's 10 feet not 10 inches. Most holes start out in the 1-3' depth range. Even then it seems clear the highest priority has to be on finding the hole and stemming the flow. Minutes (even seconds) matter at these flow rates and it's easy to lose track of time in an emergency. It will become impossible to find the source of the water long before the boat is in danger of foundering. If multiple crew are available then starting big pumps is a very close second priority. But no pump carried on board will by itself save a boat with even a small 1 inch hole 3' below the waterline unless the flow is stemmed by the crew.

Coincidentally, Steve D'Antonio will be giving a damage control lecture at US Sailing's Safety at Sea event in Annapolis the weekend of April 6-7.

Schedule

s/v Jedi 13-03-2013 19:49

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
This must be a hoax because cats don't sink.

Factor 14-03-2013 01:47

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Jedi (Post 1184616)
This must be a hoax because cats don't sink.

I can still see it - so that would suggest it hasnt sunk?

Cormorant 14-03-2013 03:05

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by transmitterdan (Post 1184606)
I think the table has depth in feet so it's 10 feet not 10 inches.

You're right, Dan -- depth is in feet. I didn't read the fine print of that table properly.

Still, a 4 inch hole 2 feet below the waterline will give you 255 gpm (15,000 gph), a pretty shocking inflow rate.

David_Old_Jersey 14-03-2013 03:21

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by s/v Jedi (Post 1184616)
This must be a hoax because cats don't sink.

I think you will find that the cat is actually fine :thumb: - well, at least it will be when it hits Yachtworld :p.

Regarding holes in boats, standard bilge pumps are intended to remove water from bilges that has arrived from "normal" use and not as an emergency response to a hole in the hull! - and for that intended use they are perfectly adequate, indeed a manual pump is still ok for that (just a bit more tiring!).....

.........when you have a hole in the hull you need a BIG pump, but most importantly you need to stem the water inflow ASAP. Every 3 foot down the water pressure doubles, so a 2" hole becomes the equivalent of a 4" hole for the volume of water that comes in - and to match that you need the water to be pumping out at the same volume..........broadly speaking if the hose on the end of your pump is not bigger in diamater than the hole in the hull you will lose the battle!........."we're gonna need a bigger pump" :p........if the hole is measured in feet then IMO you are fooked :(, if solely relying on any pumps.

I would favour watertight compartments as the most useful way of dealing with a hole in the hull...........not neccesarily sealed 24/7 (but capable of - even with leakage, i.e. a locker that when sealed still dribbles water out is way better than the 2" hole in the hull "inside" the locker!) or even half height bulkheads (Titanic style!).......a problem contained is not quite a problem solved, but a good start.

Dulcesuenos 14-03-2013 04:03

Not the first nor the last Leopard to sink. Or Lagoon for that matter.some will some wont. But will probably be slightly more buoyant than most monos ;0)

Cotemar 14-03-2013 04:35

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dulcesuenos (Post 1184772)
Not the first nor the last Leopard to sink. Or Lagoon for that matter.some will some wont. But will probably be slightly more buoyant than most monos ;0)

This may really be a true statement as only the lightweight cats will have enough buoyancy to keep them floating.
Leopards are the heaviest cats followed by Lagoons.
Fountaine Pajot (FP) is the lightest of the production cats.

My cat is approximate Light Displacement Weight 10,000 lbs or 5 tons and has 5 large pieces of foam incases into the boat.
1 large foam in each bow
1 large foam under the mast
1 large foam under each queen bed

dirkdig 14-03-2013 04:38

Where are all these sunk Lagoons?

Apart from on the bottom

Lagoon4us 14-03-2013 04:42

Re: Leopard 46 sinks after collision
 
LMAO screw sinking!


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