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PaulinVictoria

Team Vestas grounded

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All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

How so? Works just fine. Shows your experience.
Ah, Estar explained, for me cell phone aint a smartphone, linguistics. Sorry.

Oh, so you thought that I meant a non smartphone app that works onshore only?

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All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

 

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

 

Bullshit LeoV - what sort of phone do you have? Mine has a gps and one app for example is called navionics....it works offshore - at least i have been there....you sucker can even charge it on 12v - but maybe you dont know what this is either....

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All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

 

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

Bullshit LeoV - what sort of phone do you have? Mine has a gps and one app for example is called navionics....it works offshore - at least i have been there....you sucker can even charge it on 12v - but maybe you dont know what this is either....

You guys seem to under estimate Leo Vs prior experience.

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realize that these guys are professional racers but that's a different thing than being a professional sailor or seafarer. I'm sure that each man aboard has an impressive resume of racing wins, can knowledgeably talk racing rules and tactics and sail trim way beyond my comprehension, and were chosen to be aboard because they had legitimately earned the right to be perceived to be an asset to a racing crew, but how many of them have ever skippered a cruising sailboat for even a week or two, choosing their own course someplace they were unfamiliar with where there were lots of obstacles to avoid? I haven't any knowledge of all the specific crew members aboard this boat, but if they're like the racing sailors I do know, they can work magic as far as getting more boat speed out of a hull/rig than I thought possible, but basic things like navigation and having the discipline to regularly zoom down and clear their whole intended course just isn't something they'd think to do. Little details like making sure you don't run into islands is either not an issue because they are accustomed to racing on a course that somebody else layed out, or it's somebody else's job to avoid hitting things. A valuable racing crew member on a boat like this may be a foredeck or sail trim whiz, but have never spent hardly any time doing such mundane things as choosing or plotting a course except in reference to other boats in the race or in reference to current or wind shifts. In other words, (though I don't know) I wouldn't be surprised if there were only a few crew members aboard who would be considered competent seamen in the traditional sense of that word and I think that help explains why someone other than the off watch skipper or off watch navigator didn't happen to notice that they were headed directly for an island. Most of them are pure racers and very good at whatever they were hired to do, but few of them are good all around seamen because normally there's no reason for them to need to be. I happen to know only one professional sailboat racer and he's been at the game for quite a few years with some success, but I can think of literally 100's of people I'd sooner trust to deliver my boat from one side of Pen Bay to the other on a foggy night. But I have absolutely no doubt that in a race he'd be the first one across the finish line.

Interest points indeed

I don't have any money at the moment, but I've got a stack of Mt. Gay hats. I'm willing to put one up (you can pick any year between 1998 - 2013 if you win) and bet that every one of those guys is capable of doing every job on the boat including captain and navigator.

You would lose your money. A lot of the crew members are professional dinghy sailors. Some of them never sailed long offshore races, or even set foot on a yacht. These people are hired because they have proven themselves to be very talented and competitive. It doesn't mean they all have the knowledge and expirience to safely navigate a boat across the ocean. To qualify as a skipper is even more difficult. A skipper is a manager as well as a sailor. A lot of pro sailors shall never qualify as skippers, no matter how many times they sail the VOR. Remember how pro sailor Michel Desjoyeaux failed in the Mapfre team.

 

 

The Volvo alone is 38,000 sailing miles. None of these men step off of dinghy onto a Volvo. They all have been a part of many big boat campaigns and distance races. The crews of the Volvo boats have more Ocean Big Boat Sailing and Racing after the first leg than the overwhelming vast majority of sailors you will ever have the chance to stand in a room with. One Volvo alone would be greater than the equivalent of 50 Old School SORC or every Chicago Mac ever sailed. jtsailjt you are clueless when it comes to the hired help on these types of boats. What is outlandish is these guys are sailing these massive machines 24/7 for days on end with 9 guys. Everybody is more than capable of doing everything on the boat and much more plus most can go out an whipass on any one design fleet.

 

 

Here is a sample "dingy" resume....

 

Wouter Verbraak - a world class yachtsman.

He has skippered HUGO BOSS in the Barcelona World Race, he has sailed several iterations of the Volvo Ocean Race, Americas Cup, Oryx Quest, and Tour de France à la Voile, won the Admirals cup, TP52 MedCup, Middle Sea Race, Cape Town to Bahia Race and the Sydney to Hobart, co-skippered the Elanders and Avant boats in the Volvo Baltic Race and he has advised sailors on strategy and weather in the Vendee, Route du Rhum, the Jaques Vabre and the Olympics.



After almost ten years of dinghy and big boat sailing on Melges 24, Mumm30, IMX 38 etc, Wouter then got his big win being part of the Dutch Admiral's Cup team in 1999, winning the Offshore World Championships.

A year later after completing his Masters Degree in Sydney on sea breezes, Wouter got picked up by Jean Yves Bernot and Knut Frostad, to be the co-navigator in the djuice dragons Volvo Ocean Race campaign; the start of his professional sailing career.



Since then, Wouter has worked for ten years building up his skill set from weather and strategy specialist to electronics and data-analysis in the America's Cup and TP52 classes, and built up a vast amount of ocean racing experience in two Volvo Ocean Races, more than ten Atlantic crossings, and getting top results in most of the Ocean Racing Classics.

In 2011 Wouter showed his leadership talents by skippering the Hugo Boss in the double handed Barcelona World Race.

Wouter certainly does have an impressive racing resume but it doesn't mention any sailing other than in organized races. But my point wasn't really to criticize Wouter because there's been plenty of that already and I understand that there's a chain of events that could potentially lead to almost all of us running into a charted island. No doubt he screwed up big time but who hasn't? Fatigue, change in plans/routing, software, screen size, and probably other issues none of us have even thought of all contributed to Wouters lack of awareness of the island. If you reread my post, i was referring not so much to the captain and navigator, but more to the rest of the crew to raise the possibility that the crew may have only a very few savvy mariners and the rest were racing specialists who didn't have much experience with the more routine habits and tasks involved in overall good seamanship. But if you are right, and everyone aboard these boats knows everyone else's job and practices overall good seamanship, then WHY did none of the other crewmembers take a look at the chart and ask why they were headed for a reef? I think it's because that wasn't considered to be their job and it might even have been considered a faux pas to be "tinkering" with the navigators screens or questioning his routing (after all, as you pointed out, he's got a VERY impressive resume as a navigator!), and despite some of them having many ocean crossings under their belt, they had never had to be involved in basic navigation so never bothered to check on the boats intended course, just took it or granted that somebody else had that covered. In the hundreds of posts about this incident, I've seen plenty of fingers pointed at the captain and the navigator, but very few seem to be putting much blame on the rest of the crew. Why is that? After all, according to you they are all accomplished mariners and yet each of them just allowed his boat to run into a charted island! I think they correctly aren't being much blamed because it's well understood that they were doing just what they were good at and were hired to do, making the boat go faster than the other boats in the fleet almost as if they were involved in a dinghy race on steroids, but NOT participating in navigation decisions or regularly checking on their position as good seamanship demands that any watchkeeper do. I realize it's an ultra competitive environment and to have a chance at winning, making the boat go fast ALL the time is super important, but I think that this accident shows that it's not wise to compartmentalize important tasks like basic navigation to the extent this crew must have done. If you disagree, how else do you explain all 9 guys apparently not even being aware of an island right in their path?

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All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

 

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

Bullshit LeoV - what sort of phone do you have? Mine has a gps and one app for example is called navionics....it works offshore - at least i have been there....you sucker can even charge it on 12v - but maybe you dont know what this is either....

You guys seem to under estimate Leo Vs prior experience.

When someone with Leo's experience tries to take an unfounded shot at someone but instread puts their foot in their mouth, just own up to it rather than lying about it.

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All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

 

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

 

Bullshit LeoV - what sort of phone do you have? Mine has a gps and one app for example is called navionics....it works offshore - at least i have been there....you sucker can even charge it on 12v - but maybe you dont know what this is either....

I don't know if it's supposed to work without a cellphone or wifi signal but I tried using my iPhone 4s with the Navionics app inflight by propping it up against the windshield and it didn't work.

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Ateam, youre curious what I use for phone ?

I am a fashionable guy (hum not) so I carry a Samsung flip phone. Which are getting a bit more popular in sales.

No need for a smart phone for me. Got a pad at home. When I am out of the house the last thing I want to do is being glued to a screen.

I do that at home to much anyway.

 

For the rest, got a sextant in the cupboard, and know how to use it in emergency at least.

Run a Toshiba satellite with Maxsea. Toughbooks of Panasonic like DongFeng has are better though.
I read pilots and charts, even chart no1 , funny in this case read page 2:
http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/mcd/chart1/ChartNo1.pdf

 

Done landings on strange shores with dead reckoning alone, 3 days crossing.
Did landings an a strange shore without any maps of the area except oversailor, due to dropping out of a race going to a place we could repair.

Did sail in the Caribbean for years, familair with reefs in that way, and yes I touched them once, but was expected.

Running with 20 knts in the night, been there. Would not like to combine this with a reef.

 

Biggest mistake with paper charts I made, folding a chart right over an obstacle, luck has it I never went there.

 

Max,

prior is maybe a good description, been a while that I crossed a big body of water.

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All this complete and utter toss about throwing in a tack so the keel bounces off the reef, or a fucking gybe to spin away from solid danger; I can't believe what I'm reading from some here (luckily very few ... but persistent to the point of total mental imbalance). The boat is doing near 20 knots and ondeck crew surprised about what they're suddenly seeing vaguely in the dark, talking of only a few seconds. Okay say the helm hardens up head to wind, keel swings down as boat comes upright, crash. A sudden bearaway ... what BS, same result, crash. Also I believe the first hit was the leeward daggerboard not the canted keel (which must have momentarily slowed the boat speed and maybe saved the crew from being catapulted forward). All this shouda/coulda. There was zero escape once they were in 40-50metres from the reef ledge.

Remember Dongfeng almost did the same thing ... in daylight ... also gave AD a moment too, in daylight.

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Ateam, youre curious what I use for phone ?

I am a fashionable guy (hum not) so I carry a Samsung flip phone. Which are getting a bit more popular in sales.

No need for a smart phone for me. Got a pad at home. When I am out of the house the last thing I want to do is being glued to a screen.

I do that at home to much anyway.

 

For the rest, got a sextant in the cupboard, and know how to use it in emergency at least.

Run a Toshiba satellite with Maxsea. Toughbooks of Panasonic like DongFeng has are better though.

I read pilots and charts, even chart no1 , funny in this case read page 2:

http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/mcd/chart1/ChartNo1.pdf

 

Done landings on strange shores with dead reckoning alone, 3 days crossing.

Did landings an a strange shore without any maps of the area except oversailor, due to dropping out of a race going to a place we could repair.

Did sail in the Caribbean for years, familair with reefs in that way, and yes I touched them once, but was expected.

Running with 20 knts in the night, been there. Would not like to combine this with a reef.

 

 

Biggest mistake with paper charts I made, folding a chart right over an obstacle, luck has it I never went there.

 

Max,

prior is maybe a good description, been a while that I crossed a big body of water.

There is SO MUCH information on a paper chart...and yes Chart 1 is a must !....modern sat/nav/comm is wonderful...too....as in also

 

 

i prefer paper charts as well. Anyway an ipad or another tablet (maybe even the sony experia watertight) with navionics is in my opinion a great backup solution. Redundant system - ofcourse u have to download the charts beforehand on your devise ---aeh that again requires preplanning....;-)

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IN this spirit:

we have seen this screenshot:

C-Map_Cargados_Carajos_Shoal_zpsef681f9d

From Jon Eisberg.

 

You see the magenta line with a 20. A blue shoal with a 200 meter line.

And this is day setting, wonder how it looks at night setting.

 

For me on this level, would I zoom more...

Maybe, because I am confused but the marks in the magenta line, the interrupted line.

 

So who can tell me quickly what they mean ?
We have 4 minutes...

 

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Ateam, youre curious what I use for phone ?

I am a fashionable guy (hum not) so I carry a Samsung flip phone. Which are getting a bit more popular in sales.

No need for a smart phone for me. Got a pad at home. When I am out of the house the last thing I want to do is being glued to a screen.

I do that at home to much anyway.

 

For the rest, got a sextant in the cupboard, and know how to use it in emergency at least.

Run a Toshiba satellite with Maxsea. Toughbooks of Panasonic like DongFeng has are better though.

I read pilots and charts, even chart no1 , funny in this case read page 2:

http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/mcd/chart1/ChartNo1.pdf

 

Done landings on strange shores with dead reckoning alone, 3 days crossing.

Did landings an a strange shore without any maps of the area except oversailor, due to dropping out of a race going to a place we could repair.

Did sail in the Caribbean for years, familair with reefs in that way, and yes I touched them once, but was expected.

Running with 20 knts in the night, been there. Would not like to combine this with a reef.

 

 

Biggest mistake with paper charts I made, folding a chart right over an obstacle, luck has it I never went there.

 

Max,

prior is maybe a good description, been a while that I crossed a big body of water.

There is SO MUCH information on a paper chart...and yes Chart 1 is a must !....modern sat/nav/comm is wonderful...too....as in also

 

 

These boats are seriously wet when they are arced up. The regular navigating needs to be done by very wet sailors. There is no changing out of and back into party gear each time you want to check the nav. The navigator/skipper represent a quarter of the crew and are on deck sailing the boat as well. They necessarily navigate the boat quickly and dripping wet at times.

 

Paper charts really suffer in this environment and you can see the boat is not set up to use them at all.(except as a backup to systems failure)

 

I'm still hoping for Wouter to do what he said and give us an understanding of the mistake. Enquiring minds want to know...

 

"Once I can get power to the boats laptops (if they survived) I can look further into how we didn't see the reef on the electronic charts. "

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I am not finding anything more then

nr 43 page 73 of chart 1,
http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/mcd/chart1/ChartNo1.pdf

 

 

For Dutch readers ( and I suppose Verbaak would have read it:)

http://books.google.nl/books/about/Zeekaarten.html?id=DntSAAAACAAJ&redir_esc=y

Magnificent book about how a chart is made, study material at the Dutch maritime colleges in my time.

 

Their advice on this situation,
Chapter: trustworthiness of maps, section 10.2 chart depths, point 10 is valid, as the points before indicate insufficient survey and they mention too that coral is a growing thing .

Point 10 is stay at least at the 200m line.

 

 

Tricky, I think Vestas and VOr are the first to hear it, we poor sailors later.

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The GPS won't get a lock through a glass windshield. The wires for the windshield heat are very good GPS shields. The side windows in commercial aircraft may not give you enough view of the sky. My aviation mapping program works just great - as does Navionics - when flying with a Plexiglas windshield. My 4s GPS works where there is no cell coverage just fine.

 

 

 

All you need is your cell phone and a $25 app.

 

Yeah go ahead, will not work offshore, shows your experience.

 

Bullshit LeoV - what sort of phone do you have? Mine has a gps and one app for example is called navionics....it works offshore - at least i have been there....you sucker can even charge it on 12v - but maybe you dont know what this is either....

I don't know if it's supposed to work without a cellphone or wifi signal but I tried using my iPhone 4s with the Navionics app inflight by propping it up against the windshield and it didn't work.

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The solid smooth blue is an area with no data - have to zoom in to see what is there ;)

IN this spirit:

we have seen this screenshot:

C-Map_Cargados_Carajos_Shoal_zpsef681f9d

From Jon Eisberg.

 

You see the magenta line with a 20. A blue shoal with a 200 meter line.

And this is day setting, wonder how it looks at night setting.

 

For me on this level, would I zoom more...

Maybe, because I am confused but the marks in the magenta line, the interrupted line.

 

So who can tell me quickly what they mean ?
We have 4 minutes...

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in the Chart image #61551

...is that a light ???...@ the southern tip of the "Shoal"...I can't tell ...interesting if there is/was...

 

Yes, it is...

 

Bottom line is, VESTAS ran up on a reef within a mile or two of within one of the very few lighhouses in the Indian Ocean between Mauritius and the entrance to the Persian Gulf...

 

Of course, there's a high probability it might have been inoperative, or burning dim... Hell, it may very well no longer even exist...

 

However, that light, and Cocos Island, show up on British Admiralty chart 4072 - Indian Ocean Western Part - which at a glance shows THE ENTIRE ROUTE OF LEG 2, at a glance:

 

british-admiralty-nautical-chart-4072-in

 

And yet, neither feature is indicated on C-Map zoomed in to a much larger scale:

 

 

C-Map_Cargados_Carajos_Shoal_zpsef681f9d

 

Unfathomable, to me...

 

Obviously, the notion of referring to a paper chart in today's world, aboard a VOR 65, sounds ludicrous to many here... But I'd bet anything, that had even the simplest act of plotting their Noon-to-Noon runs on BA 4072, would have likely prevented this grounding... Wouter would have had to have been blind, or catatonic with fatigue, not to have noticed a freakin' ISLAND with a damn LIGHTHOUSE on it, directly in their path, within an inch or two of their position at noon that day on that single sheet of paper...

 

Of course, a similar thing can be accomplished electronically, no doubt... Has far more to do with the establishment of a procedure, a routine, than the tools that are being used... But there's still a hell of a lot to be said for the Old School way maintaining a record of fixes on a regular interval, might have helped Wouter get his head out of the game or weather routing and tactics, and back to the ability to better see the forest for the trees in terms of the safe navigation of the yacht...

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Kent:
Sorry was thinking of the Magenta line :)

 

Some modern airplanes have photo chromatic windows, they are even worse for blocking gps signals if I am right.

 

Jon,

 

bet youre right, it could be the protocols.

we even dont know when the navigator went off watch.

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IN this spirit:

we have seen this screenshot:

C-Map_Cargados_Carajos_Shoal_zpsef681f9d

 

Maybe, because I am confused but the marks in the magenta line, the interrupted line.

 

So who can tell me quickly what they mean ?

We have 4 minutes...

The purple line with broken ++ marks . . . I believe means "Seaward limit of territorial sea", which is interesting because it would definitely imply there is an island in there somewhere (I think in this case it is a 12nm limit)

 

Look here:http://mapserver.maptech.com/mapserver/nautical_symbols/N5.html

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This is interesting:

 

Team Vestas Wind media call on Monday

What/when: Team Vestas Wind will be holding a one-hour media conference call via the Webex system (details below) on Monday, December 8, 2014, at 1130 local time in Abu Dhabi/0730 UTC/0830 CET.

Background: Team Vestas Wind’s boat was grounded last Saturday (November 29) on a reef in the Indian Ocean during Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. The crew subsequently were led to safety and are now in Abu Dhabi following a debriefing this weekend.

Attendees:

Morten Albæk, CEO, Team Vestas Wind, and Vestas Chief Marketing Officer
Knut Frostad, CEO, Volvo Ocean Race
Chris Nicholson, Team Vestas Wind skipper
Wouter Verbraak, Team Vestas Wind navigator
Moderator: Morten Kamp Jørgensen, Director of Communications and PR, Team Vestas Wind,
How: We invite media to submit their questions about the incident detailed above (‘Background') in writing to Morten Kamp Jørgensen at mokjo@vestas.com in advance in this call so he can put them to the appropriate member(s) of the panel. Please let us know to whom you wish your question(s) to be addressed. We also intend to give time to media to ask oral questions during the call.

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Tried a few hours the mental game, what happened before the crash.

who was responsible for what, what are the night settings of the Nav aids, what is the protocol at watch switches etc etc.

So many variables, can see that something went wrong.

 

But I learned what the shading is around the 200m.
Learned that ECDIS changes navigation a lot.

And that Admirality chart 38 and 2851 (Gulf of Oman area) has a 2 degrees latitude difference.

Lets hope they notice that when they use paper charts :)

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Estar,

Magenta line with marks:
I noticed that limit too but I really had to search for that.

Was not in my memory. While I must have crossed such lines before in my live.

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Kent,

 

that blue line does not scare me enough, not with the 200 m line, but the numbers inside, 20 and 40, and the magenta line made me wonder.

That and the question marks on the next shoal. But we will never know if htat was the scale they used or less.

 

explanation blue line.

 

800px-British_Admiraly_chart_colours.svg

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Wouter certainly does have an impressive racing resume but it doesn't mention any sailing other than in organized races. But my point wasn't really to criticize Wouter because there's been plenty of that already and I understand that there's a chain of events that could potentially lead to almost all of us running into a charted island. No doubt he screwed up big time but who hasn't? Fatigue, change in plans/routing, software, screen size, and probably other issues none of us have even thought of all contributed to Wouters lack of awareness of the island. If you reread my post, i was referring not so much to the captain and navigator, but more to the rest of the crew to raise the possibility that the crew may have only a very few savvy mariners and the rest were racing specialists who didn't have much experience with the more routine habits and tasks involved in overall good seamanship. But if you are right, and everyone aboard these boats knows everyone else's job and practices overall good seamanship, then WHY did none of the other crewmembers take a look at the chart and ask why they were headed for a reef? I think it's because that wasn't considered to be their job and it might even have been considered a faux pas to be "tinkering" with the navigators screens or questioning his routing (after all, as you pointed out, he's got a VERY impressive resume as a navigator!), and despite some of them having many ocean crossings under their belt, they had never had to be involved in basic navigation so never bothered to check on the boats intended course, just took it or granted that somebody else had that covered. In the hundreds of posts about this incident, I've seen plenty of fingers pointed at the captain and the navigator, but very few seem to be putting much blame on the rest of the crew. Why is that? After all, according to you they are all accomplished mariners and yet each of them just allowed his boat to run into a charted island! I think they correctly aren't being much blamed because it's well understood that they were doing just what they were good at and were hired to do, making the boat go faster than the other boats in the fleet almost as if they were involved in a dinghy race on steroids, but NOT participating in navigation decisions or regularly checking on their position as good seamanship demands that any watchkeeper do. I realize it's an ultra competitive environment and to have a chance at winning, making the boat go fast ALL the time is super important, but I think that this accident shows that it's not wise to compartmentalize important tasks like basic navigation to the extent this crew must have done. If you disagree, how else do you explain all 9 guys apparently not even being aware of an island right in their path?

+1

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This is interesting:

 

Team Vestas Wind media call on Monday

 

What/when: Team Vestas Wind will be holding a one-hour media conference call via the Webex system (details below) on Monday, December 8, 2014, at 1130 local time in Abu Dhabi/0730 UTC/0830 CET.

 

Background: Team Vestas Wind’s boat was grounded last Saturday (November 29) on a reef in the Indian Ocean during Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. The crew subsequently were led to safety and are now in Abu Dhabi following a debriefing this weekend.

 

Attendees:

 

Morten Albæk, CEO, Team Vestas Wind, and Vestas Chief Marketing Officer

Knut Frostad, CEO, Volvo Ocean Race

Chris Nicholson, Team Vestas Wind skipper

Wouter Verbraak, Team Vestas Wind navigator

Moderator: Morten Kamp Jørgensen, Director of Communications and PR, Team Vestas Wind,

How: We invite media to submit their questions about the incident detailed above (‘Background') in writing to Morten Kamp Jørgensen at mokjo@vestas.com in advance in this call so he can put them to the appropriate member(s) of the panel. Please let us know to whom you wish your question(s) to be addressed. We also intend to give time to media to ask oral questions during the call.

As sailors this could be very enlightening or not at all.

 

If there is a room full of non sailing journalists it'll cover all the drama but may not get down to the brand of electronic charts, what exact scale the plotter was at when they hit, whether Wouter was off watch/asleep and, if he was, how the nav duties are attended to when Wouter sleeps.

 

There is certainly an issue to be worked through with skipper verses navigator's responsibilities; especially when it was Nicco who came on deck with the " shoals at 40m depth ahead" comment. Did Wouter tell Nicco that or did Nicco check the plotter himself?

 

Enquiring minds want to know.

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This is interesting:

 

Team Vestas Wind media call on Monday

 

What/when: Team Vestas Wind will be holding a one-hour media conference call via the Webex system (details below) on Monday, December 8, 2014, at 1130 local time in Abu Dhabi/0730 UTC/0830 CET.

 

Background: Team Vestas Winds boat was grounded last Saturday (November 29) on a reef in the Indian Ocean during Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. The crew subsequently were led to safety and are now in Abu Dhabi following a debriefing this weekend.

 

Attendees:

 

Morten Albæk, CEO, Team Vestas Wind, and Vestas Chief Marketing Officer

Knut Frostad, CEO, Volvo Ocean Race

Chris Nicholson, Team Vestas Wind skipper

Wouter Verbraak, Team Vestas Wind navigator

Moderator: Morten Kamp Jørgensen, Director of Communications and PR, Team Vestas Wind,

How: We invite media to submit their questions about the incident detailed above (Background') in writing to Morten Kamp Jørgensen at mokjo@vestas.com in advance in this call so he can put them to the appropriate member(s) of the panel. Please let us know to whom you wish your question(s) to be addressed. We also intend to give time to media to ask oral questions during the call.

Will this exclude your upcoming private interview with Nico?

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Wouter certainly does have an impressive racing resume but it doesn't mention any sailing other than in organized races. But my point wasn't really to criticize Wouter because there's been plenty of that already and I understand that there's a chain of events that could potentially lead to almost all of us running into a charted island. No doubt he screwed up big time but who hasn't? Fatigue, change in plans/routing, software, screen size, and probably other issues none of us have even thought of all contributed to Wouters lack of awareness of the island. If you reread my post, i was referring not so much to the captain and navigator, but more to the rest of the crew to raise the possibility that the crew may have only a very few savvy mariners and the rest were racing specialists who didn't have much experience with the more routine habits and tasks involved in overall good seamanship. But if you are right, and everyone aboard these boats knows everyone else's job and practices overall good seamanship, then WHY did none of the other crewmembers take a look at the chart and ask why they were headed for a reef? I think it's because that wasn't considered to be their job and it might even have been considered a faux pas to be "tinkering" with the navigators screens or questioning his routing (after all, as you pointed out, he's got a VERY impressive resume as a navigator!), and despite some of them having many ocean crossings under their belt, they had never had to be involved in basic navigation so never bothered to check on the boats intended course, just took it or granted that somebody else had that covered. In the hundreds of posts about this incident, I've seen plenty of fingers pointed at the captain and the navigator, but very few seem to be putting much blame on the rest of the crew. Why is that? After all, according to you they are all accomplished mariners and yet each of them just allowed his boat to run into a charted island! I think they correctly aren't being much blamed because it's well understood that they were doing just what they were good at and were hired to do, making the boat go faster than the other boats in the fleet almost as if they were involved in a dinghy race on steroids, but NOT participating in navigation decisions or regularly checking on their position as good seamanship demands that any watchkeeper do. I realize it's an ultra competitive environment and to have a chance at winning, making the boat go fast ALL the time is super important, but I think that this accident shows that it's not wise to compartmentalize important tasks like basic navigation to the extent this crew must have done. If you disagree, how else do you explain all 9 guys apparently not even being aware of an island right in their path?

+1

 

 

Take a look at the Sydney to Hobart race or any other big boat distance race outside or the Volvo. None of those 60 footers hit the line with 9 guys to race balls out 24/7 for days on end. You bet any of them can do any job on the boat. During most of the race each of the 9 struggle to do their own job and non sailing task assignments there is only so much time and physical energy in the day. Here is the junior lightweight on the boat...

 

Team Vestas Wind

Trimmer, data processing & food (Under 30)

 

Peter Wibroe

 

He speaks: Danish and English.

 

Who he is: Pete has a solid background in match racing. He was a crew member of the SAP Extreme 40 and has competed in the Melges 32 and RC 44. And he has a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences with a master’s degree in nanotechnology. Pete’s bachelor of nanotechnology thesis topic was: “Exploring encapsulation efficiency in single vehicles by passive transport across bilayers around phase transition.”

 

http://www.sailing.org/biog.php?id=DENPW1

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Not arguing the "number of crew" argument but it sure puts the IMOCA boys into perspective especially with the likes of Gabart winning with such eerie precision and flawlessness

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Not arguing the "number of crew" argument but it sure puts the IMOCA boys into perspective especially with the likes of Gabart winning with such eerie precision and flawlessness

Wasn't that facilitated by shore-based routing? (at least in the Route de Rhum)

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Not arguing the "number of crew" argument but it sure puts the IMOCA boys into perspective especially with the likes of Gabart winning with such eerie precision and flawlessness

Wasn't that facilitated by shore-based routing? (at least in the Route de Rhum)

Good point. But I don't think in the Vendee.

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"Around the world without assistance

Around the world via the three capes

The course for the Vendée Globe illustrates the straightforward nature and simplicity of the idea behind this major event. You sail around the world from west to east via the three major capes of Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn."

 

But...

Different animals because,

A. Crewed boats of similar size but different power, sailed more intensly and intensively, AFAIK, not having done either. When it is breezy then you are on deck during your watch without much shelter, one helm, one main trimmer, one kite trimmer, one grinder = 4.

B. Solo guys have those plush dugouts (nappy?) where they sit in their canting padded chairs monitoring the weather, routing, and traffic whilst the AP steers, popping up for trimming as needed. Generally out of visual contact with the fleet.

C. Route for VOR has been contorted for sponsors, creating much trickier navigation and seamanship challenges (viz the trip to and from China in the winter, what fun) at the same time cutting crew numbers and increasing workloads.

Hmm, something had to give.

All 4 on deck in vid are astonished and unnerved by the appearance of shoals in what they thought was open water, they have no idea which way to turn. At 20 kn even rolling up the zero took time, by the time they struck it was over already, sure maybe they shoulda woulda coulda made a blind bat turn in the dark into potentially worse danger but I doubt I would have. If I fault their reactions for anything it is that they didn't slow down but they are paid to take risks.

 

Even though there seems to be an over abundance of mental masturbation about a relatively simple, easy to explain incident (sorry I was tired and distracted and did not see it until we hit it, my bad) I am still learning from this thread, have to try navionics.

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^ Still, gybing in the middle of the night, deep in the South, with 40+ and mountains, all alone.

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"Around the world without assistance

Around the world via the three capes

The course for the Vendée Globe illustrates the straightforward nature and simplicity of the idea behind this major event. You sail around the world from west to east via the three major capes of Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn."

 

But...

Different animals because,

A. Crewed boats of similar size but different power, sailed more intensly and intensively, AFAIK, not having done either. When it is breezy then you are on deck during your watch without much shelter, one helm, one main trimmer, one kite trimmer, one grinder = 4.

B. Solo guys have those plush dugouts (nappy?) where they sit in their canting padded chairs monitoring the weather, routing, and traffic whilst the AP steers, popping up for trimming as needed. Generally out of visual contact with the fleet.

C. Route for VOR has been contorted for sponsors, creating much trickier navigation and seamanship challenges (viz the trip to and from China in the winter, what fun) at the same time cutting crew numbers and increasing workloads.

Hmm, something had to give.

All 4 on deck in vid are astonished and unnerved by the appearance of shoals in what they thought was open water, they have no idea which way to turn. At 20 kn even rolling up the zero took time, by the time they struck it was over already, sure maybe they shoulda woulda coulda made a blind bat turn in the dark into potentially worse danger but I doubt I would have. If I fault their reactions for anything it is that they didn't slow down but they are paid to take risks.

 

Even though there seems to be an over abundance of mental masturbation about a relatively simple, easy to explain incident (sorry I was tired and distracted and did not see it until we hit it, my bad) I am still learning from this thread, have to try navionics.

 

No one should be without the Navionics app on their cell phone. Why? Is it because it is the best navigational technology available? Hardly. It is because it is almost free and it is a complete backup to whatever else you use. You can be in your bunk off watch on someone else's boat and just verify in your hand that all is well. And, it goes in the dinghy with you where ever you go. You don't have to go down below or to the helm to check your position or the chart. It is right there with you. There is plenty about it that I would fix, but it shows you where you are and where you are going very well. There is even a little red line that extends forward so that you can see exactly where you are going.

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Wouter certainly does have an impressive racing resume but it doesn't mention any sailing other than in organized races. But my point wasn't really to criticize Wouter because there's been plenty of that already and I understand that there's a chain of events that could potentially lead to almost all of us running into a charted island. No doubt he screwed up big time but who hasn't? Fatigue, change in plans/routing, software, screen size, and probably other issues none of us have even thought of all contributed to Wouters lack of awareness of the island. If you reread my post, i was referring not so much to the captain and navigator, but more to the rest of the crew to raise the possibility that the crew may have only a very few savvy mariners and the rest were racing specialists who didn't have much experience with the more routine habits and tasks involved in overall good seamanship. But if you are right, and everyone aboard these boats knows everyone else's job and practices overall good seamanship, then WHY did none of the other crewmembers take a look at the chart and ask why they were headed for a reef? I think it's because that wasn't considered to be their job and it might even have been considered a faux pas to be "tinkering" with the navigators screens or questioning his routing (after all, as you pointed out, he's got a VERY impressive resume as a navigator!), and despite some of them having many ocean crossings under their belt, they had never had to be involved in basic navigation so never bothered to check on the boats intended course, just took it or granted that somebody else had that covered. In the hundreds of posts about this incident, I've seen plenty of fingers pointed at the captain and the navigator, but very few seem to be putting much blame on the rest of the crew. Why is that? After all, according to you they are all accomplished mariners and yet each of them just allowed his boat to run into a charted island! I think they correctly aren't being much blamed because it's well understood that they were doing just what they were good at and were hired to do, making the boat go faster than the other boats in the fleet almost as if they were involved in a dinghy race on steroids, but NOT participating in navigation decisions or regularly checking on their position as good seamanship demands that any watchkeeper do. I realize it's an ultra competitive environment and to have a chance at winning, making the boat go fast ALL the time is super important, but I think that this accident shows that it's not wise to compartmentalize important tasks like basic navigation to the extent this crew must have done. If you disagree, how else do you explain all 9 guys apparently not even being aware of an island right in their path?

+1

 

 

Take a look at the Sydney to Hobart race or any other big boat distance race outside or the Volvo. None of those 60 footers hit the line with 9 guys to race balls out 24/7 for days on end. You bet any of them can do any job on the boat. During most of the race each of the 9 struggle to do their own job and non sailing task assignments there is only so much time and physical energy in the day. Here is the junior lightweight on the boat...

 

Team Vestas Wind

Trimmer, data processing & food (Under 30)

 

Peter Wibroe

 

He speaks: Danish and English.

 

Who he is: Pete has a solid background in match racing. He was a crew member of the SAP Extreme 40 and has competed in the Melges 32 and RC 44. And he has a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences with a master’s degree in nanotechnology. Pete’s bachelor of nanotechnology thesis topic was: “Exploring encapsulation efficiency in single vehicles by passive transport across bilayers around phase transition.”

 

http://www.sailing.org/biog.php?id=DENPW1

Once again, a very impressive resume and clearly a very intelligent and accomplished guy, but it doesn't even mention any qualifications as a mariner other than as a match racer. Nothing wrong with that at all, but I think it supports my initial suggestion that many of the crew were more racing specialists than all around seamen. Rather than being generalists who are proficient at all the sorts of things that most people who cross oceans are, many of the crew are specialists whose role has always been to make a boat go fast and possibly that's part of the reason why nobody else aboard happened to take a look at the chartplotter and notice they were heading for an island.

 

In a previous life I was an F-16 pilot. In those days almost everyone who got to fly a F-16 was a least in the top 10% of his initial pilot training class and then you competed constantly against all of your peers to try to be the best. As a F-16 pilot you were required to maintain proficiency at air to ground, close air support, air to air, and interceptor missions against all sorts of adversaries, and stay up to date with ever evolving tactics and weapons, and of course things were always happening/changing at a rather fast pace on every single training mission. It was very challenging and rewarding and fun! However, a disproportionate number of F-16's were crashing and killing their pilots while flying a routine instrument approach, something the guy who finished last in his pilot training class could do just fine. A very good pilot who was my best buddy while we were in F-4 training class together was killed a few years later in an F-16 while flying instruments at night in nonchallenging conditions. The F-16 had adequate instruments but not great instruments, it was designed to win dogfights and drop bombs, not fly instrument approaches. Still, one would think that this group of some of the best fighter pilots in the world would be able to reliably fly a routine instrument approach in the fog without killing themselves and crashing the airplane. It turned out that the problem wasn't primarily with the instruments or even the reclined seating position causing vertigo, though both of those factors probably had some effect, but was more that fighter pilots tend to take great pride in making themselves into the best dogfighters or bombers in the squadron, but many considered working at refining their instrument flying skills to be not cool. If there was extra fuel left at the end of a training mission, nobody ever said "I think I'll fly an extra ILS approach just for practice." In other words, we were a community of pilots who were flying one of the most technologically advanced airplanes in the world, had well above average talent, were all passionate about becoming the very best fighter pilots we could be and constantly worked hard at improving ourselves, but had a worse record at flying instrument approaches than almost any other group of pilots, civilian or military.

 

Maybe some sailboat racers suffer from the same sort of mindset where they are more concerned about being the best dogfighter in the squadron than they are about honing such basic seamanship skills as knowing where they are and what lies just ahead. I'm not suggesting it as a way of criticizing them but more as a way of trying to understand how 9 top notch sailors could run their boat into an island.

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JZK, you are to the Team Vestas grounding as Doug Lord is to foiling.

 

Yes, the big problem here is not the skipper and navigator skirting responsibility for putting their multi-million dollar boat on the rocks and putting the crew in danger. It is me calling BS on their statements about it.

 

Dude, give it a rest. We get it. They fucked up. They admit they fucked up. It seems no one is trying to say otherwise. You are parsing words now and beating deceased equines. I think when they do the formal investigation, they will get at ALL the contributory factors out. I don't think anyone is shying away from the "human error" angle and trying to place blame on technology. You calling BS is irrelevant. Public statements outside of the formal investigation process are also irrelevant, as they are often based on incomplete information - i.e. one guy's perspective or emotion. Once they do the reconstruction of the event second by second, and put all perspectives of the crew together to build a single model of what happened - then and only then will the full picture be built. Until then your take is just as much speculation as anyone else's. So kindly STFU.

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Can someone in the know confirm that a new build is happening!?

 

No comment.............. ;)

I hope not, why should they get the advantage of a new boat??

 

What happens to the next team that need a new one? Or any of the spares being used to set up the new hull?

 

Putting them on a ship between legs was a step, giving a team a new frikken boat is beyond a joke.

 

I can't say that I agree with that. Why is it a joke? At the end of the day, the VOR is a commercial enterprise out to make money and promote their product. If they can pitch the extreme adversity and a rise from the ashes comeback story and it becomes a global sensation (which it could very well become) - then they will have succeeded far beyond their wildest dreams of exposure to a new audience.

 

I think putting the TVW crew right back in the saddle will accomplish that. Feel good story of the century. In several months when the VOR is over, they can show the pics of absolute anquish in Nico's eyes as he's standing in knee deep water at the back of a crashed boat with no stern next to pics of Nico and crew triumphantly sailing into port at the final finish line. Win for the VOR, win for the Vestas Wind company and win for sailing. I don't see a downside.

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In a previous life I was an F-16 pilot. In those days almost everyone who got to fly a F-16 was a least in the top 10% of his initial pilot training class and then you competed constantly against all of your peers to try to be the best. As a F-16 pilot you were required to maintain proficiency at air to ground, close air support, air to air, and interceptor missions against all sorts of adversaries, and stay up to date with ever evolving tactics and weapons, and of course things were always happening/changing at a rather fast pace on every single training mission. It was very challenging and rewarding and fun! However, a disproportionate number of F-16's were crashing and killing their pilots while flying a routine instrument approach, something the guy who finished last in his pilot training class could do just fine. A very good pilot who was my best buddy while we were in F-4 training class together was killed a few years later in an F-16 while flying instruments at night in nonchallenging conditions. The F-16 had adequate instruments but not great instruments, it was designed to win dogfights and drop bombs, not fly instrument approaches. Still, one would think that this group of some of the best fighter pilots in the world would be able to reliably fly a routine instrument approach in the fog without killing themselves and crashing the airplane. It turned out that the problem wasn't primarily with the instruments or even the reclined seating position causing vertigo, though both of those factors probably had some effect, but was more that fighter pilots tend to take great pride in making themselves into the best dogfighters or bombers in the squadron, but many considered working at refining their instrument flying skills to be not cool. If there was extra fuel left at the end of a training mission, nobody ever said "I think I'll fly an extra ILS approach just for practice." In other words, we were a community of pilots who were flying one of the most technologically advanced airplanes in the world, had well above average talent, were all passionate about becoming the very best fighter pilots we could be and constantly worked hard at improving ourselves, but had a worse record at flying instrument approaches than almost any other group of pilots, civilian or military.

 

Maybe some sailboat racers suffer from the same sort of mindset where they are more concerned about being the best dogfighter in the squadron than they are about honing such basic seamanship skills as knowing where they are and what lies just ahead. I'm not suggesting it as a way of criticizing them but more as a way of trying to understand how 9 top notch sailors could run their boat into an island.

 

GREAT POINT! What years did you fly vipers? By the time I got to my ops Sq (early 90s), much of that mindset had been beaten out of us and we always flew more instrument approaches and overheads if we had extra gas. Also, my first tour was in the UK - so instrument approaches down to no shit mins was more the norm for us. So by default we got pretty good at it as opposed to the guys at Luke or Nellis or such where there was rarely a cloud in the sky.

 

But I think you make an excellent point about what tasks top pros tend to focus on more than other tasks. Would be interesting if there was some of that going on here.

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In a previous life I was an F-16 pilot. In those days almost everyone who got to fly a F-16 was a least in the top 10% of his initial pilot training class and then you competed constantly against all of your peers to try to be the best. As a F-16 pilot you were required to maintain proficiency at air to ground, close air support, air to air, and interceptor missions against all sorts of adversaries, and stay up to date with ever evolving tactics and weapons, and of course things were always happening/changing at a rather fast pace on every single training mission. It was very challenging and rewarding and fun! However, a disproportionate number of F-16's were crashing and killing their pilots while flying a routine instrument approach, something the guy who finished last in his pilot training class could do just fine. A very good pilot who was my best buddy while we were in F-4 training class together was killed a few years later in an F-16 while flying instruments at night in nonchallenging conditions. The F-16 had adequate instruments but not great instruments, it was designed to win dogfights and drop bombs, not fly instrument approaches. Still, one would think that this group of some of the best fighter pilots in the world would be able to reliably fly a routine instrument approach in the fog without killing themselves and crashing the airplane. It turned out that the problem wasn't primarily with the instruments or even the reclined seating position causing vertigo, though both of those factors probably had some effect, but was more that fighter pilots tend to take great pride in making themselves into the best dogfighters or bombers in the squadron, but many considered working at refining their instrument flying skills to be not cool. If there was extra fuel left at the end of a training mission, nobody ever said "I think I'll fly an extra ILS approach just for practice." In other words, we were a community of pilots who were flying one of the most technologically advanced airplanes in the world, had well above average talent, were all passionate about becoming the very best fighter pilots we could be and constantly worked hard at improving ourselves, but had a worse record at flying instrument approaches than almost any other group of pilots, civilian or military.

 

Maybe some sailboat racers suffer from the same sort of mindset where they are more concerned about being the best dogfighter in the squadron than they are about honing such basic seamanship skills as knowing where they are and what lies just ahead. I'm not suggesting it as a way of criticizing them but more as a way of trying to understand how 9 top notch sailors could run their boat into an island.

GREAT POINT! What years did you fly vipers? By the time I got to my ops Sq (early 90s), much of that mindset had been beaten out of us and we always flew more instrument approaches and overheads if we had extra gas. Also, my first tour was in the UK - so instrument approaches down to no shit mins was more the norm for us. So by default we got pretty good at it as opposed to the guys at Luke or Nellis or such where there was rarely a cloud in the sky.

 

But I think you make an excellent point about what tasks top pros tend to focus on more than other tasks. Would be interesting if there was some of that going on here.

I think it's an interesting point too. Maybe this new type of offshore OD racing requires a more rigorous selection and training process than the one that is currently being implemented. All new stuff and a great deal of learning going on.

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Can someone in the know confirm that a new build is happening!?

 

No comment.............. ;)

I hope not, why should they get the advantage of a new boat??

 

What happens to the next team that need a new one? Or any of the spares being used to set up the new hull?

 

Putting them on a ship between legs was a step, giving a team a new frikken boat is beyond a joke.

 

Not to argue your point, but they will get a DNF/DNC for at least 2 maybe 3 legs plus the in-port races. They saved the sails and running rigging so that will not be replaced. The likelihood of them winning the overall is zero. They might get a leg or in-port win, but….

 

We will know in the morning after the press conference.

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Not to argue your point, but they will get a DNF/DNC for at least 2 maybe 3 legs plus the in-port races. They saved the sails and running rigging so that will not be replaced. The likelihood of them winning the overall is zero. They might get a leg or in-port win, but….

 

We will know in the morning after the press conference.

.

 

 

. .....R.O.I.

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re-posting from the resurrection thread as not sure where this is relevant.

 

just listened to the Vestas media confcall. I missed the first 10 minutes. My notes:

 

- boat is out. Not repairable

- Vestas & VOR working hard on a solution, i.e. a new boat. But this a great challenge and not an easy task. It might not be possible. Expecting to announce next steps before start of leg 3

- VOR owns the damaged boat. Vestas was leasing it.

- When Vestas was asked about their financial hit due to the accident, its CMO stated that there is no financial hit at all. Their budget is not going to increase due to it.

- Following the above, I guess that the final decision to build a new boat is going to fall on Knut's shoulders, and his ability to convince both Volvo companies to underwrite some millions. He has done this already, so we'll see.

- Vestas very disappointed to be in this situation but very proud on the way the team handled the situation.

- Nico expressed his gratitude about the support from all stakeholders.

- VOR will make public all findings and recommendations going forward.

- I did not hear Wouter speak, but maybe he did so in the 10 minutes I missed.

 

cheers

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re-posting from the resurrection thread as not sure where this is relevant.

 

just listened to the Vestas media confcall. I missed the first 10 minutes. My notes:

 

- boat is out. Not repairable

- Vestas & VOR working hard on a solution, i.e. a new boat. But this a great challenge and not an easy task. It might not be possible. Expecting to announce next steps before start of leg 3

- VOR owns the damaged boat. Vestas was leasing it.

- When Vestas was asked about their financial hit due to the accident, its CMO stated that there is no financial hit at all. Their budget is not going to increase due to it.

- Following the above, I guess that the final decision to build a new boat is going to fall on Knut's shoulders, and his ability to convince both Volvo companies to underwrite some millions. He has done this already, so we'll see.

- Vestas very disappointed to be in this situation but very proud on the way the team handled the situation.

- Nico expressed his gratitude about the support from all stakeholders.

- VOR will make public all findings and recommendations going forward.

- I did not hear Wouter speak, but maybe he did so in the 10 minutes I missed.

 

cheers

Great, thanks for update….

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in the Chart image #61551

...is that a light ???...@ the southern tip of the "Shoal"...I can't tell ...interesting if there is/was...

Yes, it is...

 

Bottom line is, VESTAS ran up on a reef within a mile or two of within one of the very few lighhouses in the Indian Ocean between Mauritius and the entrance to the Persian Gulf...

 

Of course, there's a high probability it might have been inoperative, or burning dim... Hell, it may very well no longer even exist...

 

However, that light, and Cocos Island, show up on British Admiralty chart 4072 - Indian Ocean Western Part - which at a glance shows THE ENTIRE ROUTE OF LEG 2, at a glance:

 

british-admiralty-nautical-chart-4072-in

 

And yet, neither feature is indicated on C-Map zoomed in to a much larger scale:

 

 

C-Map_Cargados_Carajos_Shoal_zpsef681f9d

 

Unfathomable, to me...

 

Obviously, the notion of referring to a paper chart in today's world, aboard a VOR 65, sounds ludicrous to many here... But I'd bet anything, that had even the simplest act of plotting their Noon-to-Noon runs on BA 4072, would have likely prevented this grounding... Wouter would have had to have been blind, or catatonic with fatigue, not to have noticed a freakin' ISLAND with a damn LIGHTHOUSE on it, directly in their path, within an inch or two of their position at noon that day on that single sheet of paper...

 

Of course, a similar thing can be accomplished electronically, no doubt... Has far more to do with the establishment of a procedure, a routine, than the tools that are being used... But there's still a hell of a lot to be said for the Old School way maintaining a record of fixes on a regular interval, might have helped Wouter get his head out of the game or weather routing and tactics, and back to the ability to better see the forest for the trees in terms of the safe navigation of the yacht...

Well said!

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Racing here in San Francisco, Si's sometimes have restricted areas which you cannot unwind from - if you make a navigation error and sail into them, your race is over. Isn't this similar to what the Vestas folks did? If you've been racing long enough, you've made a mistake which took you out of a regatta. That's sailboat racing. In real life mistakes have consequences - stupid does hurt. It really doesn't matter if you have a stellar resume or you're the worlds best sailor - if you put your boat up on the reef, there are consequences. That's what 'accepting responsibility' means. Fielding another boat and continuing racing seems like some weird sense of bravado. When going through a loss, we all have similar throws of emotion - denial, bargaining, anger, depression, and finally acceptance. I can see allot of this going on here. This should be the end for Vestas for this race. They just haven't accepted it yet. The team can have their redemption next time around.

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Can someone in the know confirm that a new build is happening!?

Material ordered. Starting Monday 15th at one of the yards. Planning phase now.

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re-posting from the resurrection thread as not sure where this is relevant.

 

just listened to the Vestas media confcall. I missed the first 10 minutes. My notes:

 

- boat is out. Not repairable

- Vestas & VOR working hard on a solution, i.e. a new boat. But this a great challenge and not an easy task. It might not be possible. Expecting to announce next steps before start of leg 3

- VOR owns the damaged boat. Vestas was leasing it.

- When Vestas was asked about their financial hit due to the accident, its CMO stated that there is no financial hit at all. Their budget is not going to increase due to it.

- Following the above, I guess that the final decision to build a new boat is going to fall on Knut's shoulders, and his ability to convince both Volvo companies to underwrite some millions. He has done this already, so we'll see.

- Vestas very disappointed to be in this situation but very proud on the way the team handled the situation.

- Nico expressed his gratitude about the support from all stakeholders.

- VOR will make public all findings and recommendations going forward.

- I did not hear Wouter speak, but maybe he did so in the 10 minutes I missed.

 

cheers

Great, thanks for update….

 

Clean has posted a full recording here:

http://www.mixcloud.com/sailinganarchy/8-december-2014-vestas-wind-shipwreck-vestas-skipper-nicholson-navigator-verbraak-and-vor-staff/?utm_source=widget&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=base_links&utm_term=resource_link

 

I did not missed much. Nico & Wouter admitted that their mistake was not too zoom on the charts. Vestas CMO confirmed that should they sail again, they will do it with Nico as skipper. No comment about Wouter's future, though.

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Think that's a joke - unless there really is a 'secretly built second generation VOR65 (the VOR65 2.0)' with 'significantly more power than the old VOR65's' (google translated)

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read Nico's transcript and go watch the video clip again. The wheels spinning hard lock to hard lock, that is the rudders breaking.

 

it is a shame it is at night if they really did spin 180 degrees at that speed it is hard to tell from the video and sail trims, though the main does backwind quite a bit so they definitely turn quite a ways.

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Think that's a joke - unless there really is a 'secretly built second generation VOR65 (the VOR65 2.0)' with 'significantly more power than the old VOR65's' (google translated)

The article in Dutch says:

Zojuist is bekend gemaakt dat Team Vestas de Volvo Ocean Race zal uitvaren. Daarvoor krijgen ze de eerste, in het geheim gebouwde tweede generatie VOR65 (de VOR65 2.0) tot hun beschikking.

Omdat deze boot aanzienlijk meer power heeft dan de oude VOR65's, waar de rest van de vloot mee vaart, moet Vestas starten waar het gebleven was en de verloren tijd goedmaken zonder dispensatie.

 

Translated with my two cents of thought:

It was recently announced Team Vestas will sail the VOR 2013/14. Fore that they get the first, (secretly built) VOR 65. This version 2.0 model wil be even stronger and powerfull then the "old" VOR 65's.

Therefore they have to start where they parked their first VOR 65 to finish the race.

 

Guess they will be last in Abu Dhabi. But for the rest of the race this might grow very interesting.

See what happens. Innovation goes on and on and on. As an engineer I like that.

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Wouter's original comments about getting laptop(s) up and running and reviewing the data is also in this interview... I can't help feeling that he thinks that process may reveal something fresh and or important??????.......might be more than just map scaling/zooming human error??

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It was just announced on the facebook page of Klaas Wiersma, Vesta gets a second boat from the VOR organisation and can continue their campaign.

https://www.facebook.com/klaas.wiersma.581 (in Dutch)

attachicon.gifVestas Mapfre Ador and SCA in close battle.jpg

Perhaps old news to some of you.

This is all I got from the link

 

 

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Racing here in San Francisco, Si's sometimes have restricted areas which you cannot unwind from - if you make a navigation error and sail into them, your race is over. Isn't this similar to what the Vestas folks did? If you've been racing long enough, you've made a mistake which took you out of a regatta. That's sailboat racing. In real life mistakes have consequences - stupid does hurt. It really doesn't matter if you have a stellar resume or you're the worlds best sailor - if you put your boat up on the reef, there are consequences. That's what 'accepting responsibility' means. Fielding another boat and continuing racing seems like some weird sense of bravado. When going through a loss, we all have similar throws of emotion - denial, bargaining, anger, depression, and finally acceptance. I can see allot of this going on here. This should be the end for Vestas for this race. They just haven't accepted it yet. The team can have their redemption next time around.

 

 

That might be true for the Star Worlds or your own private regatta somewhere. Volvo is now big business with many non sailor lawyer and finance types at the table. A message to the next big budget executive that the Volvo operators will employ paper rules that stop the business marketing efforts from going forward could harm the approval of future sponsorship and other business commitments. All the sailors are getting paid. While some may whine and cry with protests. The reality is boardroom money drives the show and the highly paid help and vendors all want the show to go on bigger and better. Once we allowed TV and sponsorship into sailing we gave up a lot.

 

Look at NASCAR... No matter what you do to the Viagra or Tide car one weekend... Tide and Viagra will be on the track before the next weekend championship eligible. From a business and sponsorship prospective Team Vestas Wind should be able to race the next leg even if that means building a new boat or buying a weaker competitors boat. If man on man pure skill is your nirvana head to the Star Worlds or Laser Class. Volvo is $business$ now.

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Wouter's original comments about getting laptop(s) up and running and reviewing the data is also in this interview... I can't help feeling that he thinks that process may reveal something fresh and or important??????.......might be more than just map scaling/zooming human error??

 

 

not likely.., and anyway it would be hard for it to be worse than what we already know

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Racing here in San Francisco, Si's sometimes have restricted areas which you cannot unwind from - if you make a navigation error and sail into them, your race is over. Isn't this similar to what the Vestas folks did? If you've been racing long enough, you've made a mistake which took you out of a regatta. That's sailboat racing. In real life mistakes have consequences - stupid does hurt. It really doesn't matter if you have a stellar resume or you're the worlds best sailor - if you put your boat up on the reef, there are consequences. That's what 'accepting responsibility' means. Fielding another boat and continuing racing seems like some weird sense of bravado. When going through a loss, we all have similar throws of emotion - denial, bargaining, anger, depression, and finally acceptance. I can see allot of this going on here. This should be the end for Vestas for this race. They just haven't accepted it yet. The team can have their redemption next time around.

 

That might be true for the Star Worlds or your own private regatta somewhere. Volvo is now big business with many non sailor lawyer and finance types at the table. A message to the next big budget executive that the Volvo operators will employ paper rules that stop the business marketing efforts from going forward could harm the approval of future sponsorship and other business commitments. All the sailors are getting paid. While some may whine and cry with protests. The reality is boardroom money drives the show and the highly paid help and vendors all want the show to go on bigger and better. Once we allowed TV and sponsorship into sailing we gave up a lot.

 

Look at NASCAR... No matter what you do to the Viagra or Tide car one weekend... Tide and Viagra will be on the track before the next weekend championship eligible. From a business and sponsorship prospective Team Vestas Wind should be able to race the next leg even if that means building a new boat or buying a weaker competitors boat. If man on man pure skill is your nirvana head to the Star Worlds or Laser Class. Volvo is $business$ now.

except that every nascar team has at least 2 cars if not many more. Heck the bigger teams may bring more than one car that is slightly optimized for different conditions. Choosing which car to race depending on local conditions.

 

There are only 6.5 vo65'S right now.

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No one should be without the Navionics app on their cell phone. You can be in your bunk off watch on someone else's boat and just verify in your hand that all is well. And, it goes in the dinghy with you where ever you go. You don't have to go down below or to the helm to check your position or the chart. It is right there with you. There is even a little red line that extends forward so that you can see exactly where you are going.

 

I think we're all sick to death of hearing about your fucking cell phone. There's always one prick on the boat who won't stop playing with his iphone till the battery gives out or it gets thrown overboard.

 

I heard that there are 3 types of sailor - those who have gone aground, those who have never left the dock, and fucking liars.

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So given what we know - my take now:


1. The team admits they simply did not ever zoom in on the chart. That's a simple human error given all the signals on the chart that it should be zoomed in on (both shoal area and the purple territorial limit lines cry out for further investigation). It is also a management process error (lack of double checking of a very fundamental process crying out for checking)


2. This area was originally excluded (we are still not 100% certain about that but I am guessing it was so, with a non-public exclusion zone). It was opened up the day before the start, and 'should have been' examined in detail then. But everyone was busy with specific pre-start activities and it was not done. It seems that there was the idea that it would happen after the start, but again everyone was busy and it did not get done. This was a management (priority/follow-up) failure.

The team has not specifically mentioned fatigue as a root cause of either of the above errors. So, we don't (yet) know how important that factor was.


3. Correct use of the depth sounder (min depth alarm) and/or radar (guard zone) could have avoided this incident, even given the above two errors, but they were (apparently) not used. That is a process error.

4. The charting zoom is a problem. It appeared as a systematic problem, to other boats in the fleet, and not just on this boat. It should be 'fixed'. The Nav and Skipper 'should have' been well familiar with the problem and had process to deal with it, because it is a well known and documented issue. But the charting industry needs to get its act together and address this. The charting should help, not hinder, safe operation. It will be slow and painful, but Volvo, Vestas and the incident team could leave a lasting mark on the sport if they got the industry to fess up and start working on the problem.


5. When the crew saw the breaking water there was no reaction. They had little time, and they thought they knew there were no dangers, and it unfortunately timed at the bottom of the sleep cycle. But there 'should be' a trained reaction/process (which did not happen) when the deck spots an unexpected hazard. Someone should at least immediately check the plotter at high zoom, the AIS and the radar. I am not sure with these boats when in the process the helmsman should react, but given their speeds, it would have to be pretty early on. I know they would hate to lose ground and it will be one of those racing vs. safety trade-off, but there should at least be a very clear bright line when(and how) the helm reacts to such events.


6. The (aft) watertight bulkhead most likely saved lives. The keel design was structurally 'strong enough' and it was excellent that the bulb broke first. Generally the boat builders and designers deserve praise.


7. It is not clear that pfd's or tethers would have been any benefit if the boat had sunk, but it may reflect a lack of 'safety culture' that the crew did not (appear to have) have gear on. I know racers (and in fact most of us with a bunch of offshore miles) tend to not wear this stuff on 'nice tropical nights', but this is a pro work environment. Yes, this is a race, and racing priorities sometimes conflict with safety priorities (as in the 'how close is safe' decisions) but in most of the factors of this incident they did not conflict except in that the safety side simply did not seem to get sufficient attention.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

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No one should be without the Navionics app on their cell phone. You can be in your bunk off watch on someone else's boat and just verify in your hand that all is well. And, it goes in the dinghy with you where ever you go. You don't have to go down below or to the helm to check your position or the chart. It is right there with you. There is even a little red line that extends forward so that you can see exactly where you are going.

 

I think we're all sick to death of hearing about your fucking cell phone. There's always one prick on the boat who won't stop playing with his iphone till the battery gives out or it gets thrown overboard.

 

I heard that there are 3 types of sailor - those who have gone aground, those who have never left the dock, and fucking liars.

You want to hear more about my cell phone? Thanks for asking. It is a Sony Ultra Z with a 6.4" screen. And, it is completely waterproof making it ideal for navigation use.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

 

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

read the transcript interview The boat did a 180 after it hit the reef.

 

Secondly you can't crash tack or gybe a VO 65 with the on watch crew. Or have you been completely ignorant to the workings of the boats? If a sail change is needed the off watch is required to wake up to assist. This isn't a 30' boat on a fresh water lake.

Oh and your phone is rated to get wet. If it is dunked repeatedly it will die.

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Think that's a joke - unless there really is a 'secretly built second generation VOR65 (the VOR65 2.0)' with 'significantly more power than the old VOR65's' (google translated)

The article in Dutch says:

Zojuist is bekend gemaakt dat Team Vestas de Volvo Ocean Race zal uitvaren. Daarvoor krijgen ze de eerste, in het geheim gebouwde tweede generatie VOR65 (de VOR65 2.0) tot hun beschikking.

Omdat deze boot aanzienlijk meer power heeft dan de oude VOR65's, waar de rest van de vloot mee vaart, moet Vestas starten waar het gebleven was en de verloren tijd goedmaken zonder dispensatie.

 

Translated with my two cents of thought:

It was recently announced Team Vestas will sail the VOR 2013/14. Fore that they get the first, (secretly built) VOR 65. This version 2.0 model wil be even stronger and powerfull then the "old" VOR 65's.

Therefore they have to start where they parked their first VOR 65 to finish the race.

 

Guess they will be last in Abu Dhabi. But for the rest of the race this might grow very interesting.

See what happens. Innovation goes on and on and on. As an engineer I like that.

That post you refer to is 100% fake.

Check your sources properly next time.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

read the transcript interview The boat did a 180 after it hit the reef.

 

Secondly you can't crash tack or gybe a VO 65 with the on watch crew. Or have you been completely ignorant to the workings of the boats? If a sail change is needed the off watch is required to wake up to assist. This isn't a 30' boat on a fresh water lake.

Oh and your phone is rated to get wet. If it is dunked repeatedly it will die.

 

My phone is rated to be under 1.m of fresh water for 30m. But I don't need it to do that. I just need it to be a backup to the other systems I have with me.

 

I said turn the boat 180 "as quickly as possible." I didn't say that should have called for a sail change. Can you read English? And, yes, it is probably best to turn the boat 180 BEFORE they crash into the island.

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Think that's a joke - unless there really is a 'secretly built second generation VOR65 (the VOR65 2.0)' with 'significantly more power than the old VOR65's' (google translated)

The article in Dutch says:

Zojuist is bekend gemaakt dat Team Vestas de Volvo Ocean Race zal uitvaren. Daarvoor krijgen ze de eerste, in het geheim gebouwde tweede generatie VOR65 (de VOR65 2.0) tot hun beschikking.

Omdat deze boot aanzienlijk meer power heeft dan de oude VOR65's, waar de rest van de vloot mee vaart, moet Vestas starten waar het gebleven was en de verloren tijd goedmaken zonder dispensatie.

 

Translated with my two cents of thought:

It was recently announced Team Vestas will sail the VOR 2013/14. Fore that they get the first, (secretly built) VOR 65. This version 2.0 model wil be even stronger and powerfull then the "old" VOR 65's.

Therefore they have to start where they parked their first VOR 65 to finish the race.

 

Guess they will be last in Abu Dhabi. But for the rest of the race this might grow very interesting.

See what happens. Innovation goes on and on and on. As an engineer I like that.

That post you refer to is 100% fake.

Check your sources properly next time.

.

 

.... Schakel's batting ~1/100 for credibility. <_<

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.

...a re-post from another thread....perhaps some more for the pigs trolls brain trust to chew on..it's nice to keep them it all in one pen cage place :rolleyes:

 

 

Richard Gladwell's transcription of the presser for Sail-World.com/nz

http://www.sail-world.com/Canada/Volvo-Ocean-Race:-I-saw-jagged-rocks-and-breaking-waves---Nicholson/129723

Volvo Ocean Race: 'I saw jagged rocks and breaking waves' - Nicholson

The Team Vestas Wind crew and Volvo Ocean Race management have just completed a media conference call in Abu Dhabi.

Skipper Chris Nicholson opened by outlining what happened in the 48-hour period prior to the grounding off Team Vestas Wind's on the Cargados Carajos Shoals, some 200 miles north-east of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean

'We were aware that there would be some sea-mounts. When I saw those, I asked what the depth and current and wave conditions would be.

Shore crew manager Neil Cox (blue shirt) and skipper Chris Nicholson after Team Vestas Wind crew arrives to Mauritius - Marc Bow-Volvo Ocean Race Click Here to view large photo
My experience with those off the east coast of Australia is that conditions can get quite bumpy with a difficult wave state.. Wouter’s reply was that the depth went from 3000 metres to 40 metres – that were the extremes of the depths.

'The current was negligible, and we would monitor the wave state, as we approached,' Nicholson said.

'A 40 metre depth is perfectly safe depth at which to cross seamounts or any piece of terrain', Nicholson added.

'That information as relayed to the crew, so they were informed as to the conditions.'

'In hindsight we would have zoomed in much more on the actual area,' said navigator Wouter Verbraak. 'We have not yet managed to get the computers up and running, they are pretty much dead. But we would like to do this, so we know what has happened.

'We had passed during the days, over several seamounts,' Verbraak explained. 'The wave were quite big due to the tropical storms. But we didn’t have any problems with the seamounts. Wave conditions were forecasted to diminish. As such 40 metres was a safe depth to pass over the seamounts.

Team Vestas Wind spun 180 degrees on impact with the Cargados Carajos Shoals, Mauritius, in the Indian Ocean. - Brian Carlin - Team Vestas Wind Click Here to view large photo

In response to a question as to whether the crew was in any danger, Nicholson said they were certainly in danger from the time the 65ft yacht hit the atoll.

'We went instantly into an 180-degree turn. In the force of the impact, our rudders broke off. In the instantaneous turn, our dagger board snapped off. We were completely stuck with breaking waves.

'My initial look over the side of the boat was jagged rocks and breaking waves. At that stage, I didn’t even know there was a safe haven as such in the lagoon, some distance away.

'My initial thoughts were obviously for the worst. We had to inform Race Headquarters. There were 100 jobs going on at the one time', he explained, such as securing bulkhead watertight doors, getting survival suits, the liferafts and the AIS personal beacons.'

November 29, 2014. Leg 2 onboard Team Alvimedica. DAY 10. Alvimedica diverts to the Cargados Carajos Shoals where Team Vestas has run aground. Navigator Will Oxley communicates with Vestas over the VHF. - © Amory Ross / Team Alvimedica Click Here to view large photo

'There was so much going on but the one thing that shone out was the entire crew handled the situation with composure.'

'My one thought was that we had to get the boat under control - we had sails still hoisted. It was an amazingly stressful time, but we need to back up and remember that this was bought about by a simple human error.'

'At the end of the day we didn’t look at the chart and we didn’t zoom in enough.'

'But after that it all went well.'

A textbook recovery:
'We made a serious mistake, but the good thing is that we didn't make anymore', said Wolter Verbraak. (It should be noted that in one Pilot for the area it is claimed that the Shoals are 3nm out of position and if correct, electronic and paper charts would both have been affected.)

'Often when you make one mistake, several others are made, and the situation snowballs, and that creates a dangerous situation. But we didn't and that is a testimony to our teamwork and our training and I still vividly remember the moment - even though it was the worst moment in my sailing career, it was also one of the best - because we worked as a team, and that was incredible. As Chris Nicholson highlighted, there was so many jobs to be done - and that is one of the big things that I cherish from this. Everyone picked a piece of the puzzle that moved us forward and into safety. It was an amazing atmosphere on the boat. There was an incredible teamwork and bond within the team.'

Volvo Ocean Race CEO, Knut Frostad reiterated the organizer's relief that all the crew were safe and not injured.

Currently, Vestas Wind and Volvo Ocean Race, along with the insurers of the boat are working together to determine what will happen to the 65ft round the world racer, which is still on the atoll. 'We are all making our absolute best efforts to do what is right with the boat on the reef. Both Volvo Ocean Race and Vestas have a very clear mission to ensure that there is a minimum of environmental impact on the reef.'

The boat will be removed, either 'in its current form or in a different form. We are working on the detail, and all parties are supporting the plan, and trying to make things happen as quickly as possible.'

Team Vestas Wind stuck hard on the Cargados Carajos Shoals - Volvo Ocean RaceClick Here to view large photo

Sponsors keen to go again:
Morten Albaek, CEO of Team Vestas Wind and Chief Marketing Officer of Vestas Wind reiterated the sponsors keenness to continue in the Race, and confirmed that Chris Nicholson would remain as skipper. 'I trust him now as much as I did before,' Albaek declared.

'It is Vestas' clear ambition to get Vestas Wind out sailing again. We will do everything within our means to make that happen.'

'If the assessment from all the parties is that the boat cannot be repaired. One of the options we are looking into is building a new boat, and whether that can be done and in a time that is meaningful for the team and for Vestas to re-enter the race. That is all still to be concluded, and we are all working closely with Volvo Ocean Race to explore that opportunity, but we don't have any detailed plans or conclusions, yet.'

He confirmed that crew debriefing interviews were already underway to determine what had happened in the lead-up to the incident and that attempts to revive the computers were being made to retrieve the information and build a complete picture, before continuing in the race. The information would be shared within the team and with other teams in the race and the wider sailing community.

Organizers were keen to point out that the issue was a human error. 'Wouter has identified what that was', said Albaek. 'There is no co-relation between the fact that we started our preparation late and this incident.'

Knut Frostad said that the inquiry was extremely important to the Volvo Ocean Race. 'We want to know why the incident happened and how it can be avoided. But also thankfully we don't have incidents like this happening often. We also want to learn how all the safety features worked on the boat, and what the crew experienced in this situation.'

'We are also debriefing with Vestas crew members here and will do so with other team members. We are looking at some changes, if necessary, before the next leg.'

'Our learnings will be published and shared. I cannot give an undertaking as to the timing,' he added.

When first hit, skipper Chris Nicholson said he was unaware that a lagoon lay behind them - Brian Carlin - Team Vestas Wind Click Here to view large photo

Boat ownership clarified:
Frostad confirmed that the yacht was owned by Volvo Ocean Race and leased to the Vestas team. If the boat cannot be repaired, and a new boat is commissioned, then 'we will have to talk about the ownership structure.'

Albaek confirmed that there were no financial consequences for Vestas, as the sponsor of the Team Vestas Wind. The boat was insured, and there will be 'no overall decrease in the budget for Vestas Wind's participation in the Volvo Ocean Race if we are lucky enough to get sailing again.'

'There are no financial consequences for Vestas' Albaek reiterated. 'Our close partners, Powerhouse, are also very keen on exploring all opportunities for Vestas to re-enter the race. Of course, it has to be a joint effort to bring the team back. It will take a real contribution from all parties, bring the team back on the water. But Vestas as the lead sponsor is going to take the leadership to drive these opportunities, along with Powerhouse.'

'It is very important for the sailing world to understand that the culture we have within this team is very open and honest,' said Chris Nicholson. 'In the weeks ahead we can go into much finer detail about what happened. But from a personal point of view I really need to thank the Volvo Ocean Race and their safety standards. And Vestas in regard to how we handled the crisis both during and since. They have been amazing with their level of support for the entire team.'

It is not yet known if Vestas Wind can be rebuilt - Brian Carlin - Team Vestas Wind Click Here to view large photo

'Alvimedica stood by us and gave invaluable assistance during the night.' Nicholson also acknowledged the Mauritius Coastguard and the Mauritius Police, The level of assistance we received that night was quite amazing, and we did need it.

'Since then everyone in the program has been quite touched by the level of support that we have had.

'I don't know what I expected, but it has simply been amazing. There is a glimmer of hope that we can be back, and I know that everyone here is working just as hard as they can to make that happen.'

Vestas Wind Team boss Morten Albaek reiterated Nicholson's sentiments and thanked the other teams for their help and support 'even though we currently don't have a boat in the race.'

He expected that a decision as to the teams future involvement would be made before the start of the next leg. All parties pointed out that getting the team back in the race was not a foregone conclusion and would be extremely challenging.

But to counter that view, the Volvo Ocean 65 fleet were fortuitously built to be used for two races, and one objective for Team Vestas Wind may be to restart either in Auckland or South America and use the rest of the Race to build for the 2017-18 event.


November 29, 2014. Leg 2 onboard Team Alvimedica. DAY 10. Alvimedica diverts to the Cargados Carajos Shoals where Team Vestas has run aground. Navigator Will Oxley communicates with Vestas over the VHF. - © Amory Ross / Team Alvimedica Click Here to view large photo

Shore crew manager Neil Cox (blue shirt) and skipper Chris Nicholson after Team Vestas Wind crew arrives to Mauritius - Marc Bow-Volvo Ocean Race Click Here to view large photo

December 03, 2014. Team Vestas Wind crew arrives to Mauritius with all the equipment they rescued from the boat after grounding on the Cargados Carajos Shoals on the 29th November; - Marc Bow-Volvo Ocean Race Click Here to view large photo

The Vestas Wind team will minimise their impact on the reef as much as possible - Brian Carlin - Team Vestas Wind Click Here to view large photo

 


by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

read the transcript interview The boat did a 180 after it hit the reef.

 

Secondly you can't crash tack or gybe a VO 65 with the on watch crew. Or have you been completely ignorant to the workings of the boats? If a sail change is needed the off watch is required to wake up to assist. This isn't a 30' boat on a fresh water lake.

Oh and your phone is rated to get wet. If it is dunked repeatedly it will die.

 

My phone is rated to be under 1.m of fresh water for 30m. But I don't need it to do that. I just need it to be a backup to the other systems I have with me.

 

I said turn the boat 180 "as quickly as possible." I didn't say that should have called for a sail change. Can you read English? And, yes, it is probably best to turn the boat 180 BEFORE they crash into the island.

 

 

JZK I am sorry to publicly embarrass you like this but... you must do most of your sailing on the apartment toilet and any navigation from the back of your moms old stationwagon. GSM phones are at best line of sight. That means you phone no matter what the guy told you at the mall cannot see a tower 400 feet in the air beyond 20 miles. See means you might get those simpleton bars on your big waterproof screen. Now to some complex GSM sh*!. The towers are time division multiplexing. That is how the towers talk to a bunch of phones. When the tower sends your phone a signal for data you have a tiny time slot to respond. If you phone does not get its message back in time you are not there and the tower moves onto the next phone or device. Those messages fly back and forth at the speed of light. GSM times slots are set at 35km. In perfect conditions a GSM device can sink with a tower and communicate with a tower 35KM away. The laws of physics and the GSM standards get in the way of connecting to a tower past 35KM. The signal just cannot get back and forth fast enough. These guys were 200 miles from everywhere and nowhere. NO CELL COVERAGE. GSM CELL PHONES ARE WORTHLESS FOR MARITIME NAVIGATION. Yes, you can use the toy you picked up from the guy chewing gum at the mall in downtown miami and a few other places where you should not need it. But, in short order your mother will drive the family wagon to a Teddy Kennedy parking spot. Yea... come to think of it. Teddy should have done a 180 just before he entered the bridge and splashed the car.

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Some very good points. I've kept quiet for a while now, but I think this does provide some useful starting issues that are not just the peanut gallery claiing with 20/20 hindsight that it would never have happened if they had been navigating (especially if they had their cell phone wit them)

 

 

1. The team admits they simply did not ever zoom in on the chart. That's a simple human error given all the signals on the chart that it should be zoomed in on (both shoal area and the purple territorial limit lines cry out for further investigation). It is also a management process error (lack of double checking of a very fundamental process crying out for checking)
I don't think they ever said they "did not ever zoom in". That would make no sense anyway. What - they navigated with the screen showing the entire Indian ocean? What has been said, is what has been suggested here many times - they didn't zoom enough at the right point.
Double checking is a good point about sensible safety critical process. But here is the thing. Who here has a process instituted on a boat where such double checking is institutionalised (ie done in a formal manner that can be itself be checked?) Who thinks that any of the other VOR boats double check? Really? This leads into the cultural issues mentioned below.

2. This area was originally excluded (we are still not 100% certain about that but I am guessing it was so, with a non-public exclusion zone). It was opened up the day before the start, and 'should have been' examined in detail then. But everyone was busy with specific pre-start activities and it was not done. It seems that there was the idea that it would happen after the start, but again everyone was busy and it did not get done. This was a management (priority/follow-up) The team has not specifically mentioned fatigue as a root cause of either of the above errors. So, we don't (yet) know how important that factor was.

I doubt anyone thinks it wasn't a contributor.

 

3. Correct use of the depth sounder (min depth alarm) and/or radar (guard zone) could have avoided this incident, even given the above two errors, but they were (apparently) not used. That is a process error.

 

From what I read, they expected the depth the rise to 40m. But no less. This is problem in the reverse. It seems they did have the depth sounder operational and it did notify them of the sudden rise. But they expected it. So no guard zone.

 

4. The charting zoom is a problem. It appeared as a systematic problem, to other boats in the fleet, and not just on this boat. It should be 'fixed'. The Nav and Skipper 'should have' been well familiar with the problem and had process to deal with it, because it is a well known and documented issue. But the charting industry needs to get its act together and address this. The charting should help, not hinder, safe operation. It will be slow and painful, but Volvo, Vestas and the incident team could leave a lasting mark on the sport if they got the industry to fess up and start working on the problem.

Agreed. A big problem is that the market for ocean racing charting and routing software is pretty limited. It is a niche cottage industry. There isn't the money or the people. Human factors in software systems is just plain hard, and you have to be ever careful that well intentioned fixes to problems don't introduce new hazards. A huge problem is the use of the conventional laptop as the basic unit of operation. This besets software systems everywhere. They are cheap, perform well, and ubiquitous. But they are limited, and there are lots of reasons that they are not the right platform. Massive clutter on a small screen is very likely the single biggest contributor. Yes all the navigators should be used to it, and they should know to work around it. But accidents are made of "should haves".

 

5. When the crew saw the breaking water there was no reaction. They had little time, and they thought they knew there were no dangers, and it unfortunately timed at the bottom of the sleep cycle. But there 'should be' a trained reaction/process (which did not happen) when the deck spots an unexpected hazard. Someone should at least immediately check the plotter at high zoom, the AIS and the radar. I am not sure with these boats when in the process the helmsman should react, but given their speeds, it would have to be pretty early on. I know they would hate to lose ground and it will be one of those racing vs. safety trade-off, but there should at least be a very clear bright line when(and how) the helm reacts to such events.

I doubt there was any chance to do this. From the first sign of breaking waves to impact, nobody could have even made it to the nav station, let alone started to mess about trying to work out what was happening. The AIS would not have helped, and the radar was almost certainly not operating due to its power draw. Once they saw the breakers they were already doomed. A codified set of reactions is very hard. It is hard becuse you want to be sure that the reaction is not itself more dangerous than the thing you might be avoiding. Fully powered up a sudden course change can lead to a wipeout with not a lot of effort. A broach in the middle of the night with not everyone clipped on just because a pod of dolphins surfaced nearby is not what you want to be telling someone's widow.

6. The (aft) watertight bulkhead most likely saved lives. The keel design was structurally 'strong enough' and it was excellent that the bulb broke first. Generally the boat builders and designers deserve praise.

Indeed. This bit worked well. Had this been a VO70 it would have been grim.

 


7. It is not clear that pfd's or tethers would have been any benefit if the boat had sunk, but it may reflect a lack of 'safety culture' that the crew did not (appear to have) have gear on. I know racers (and in fact most of us with a bunch of offshore miles) tend to not wear this stuff on 'nice tropical nights', but this is a pro work environment. Yes, this is a race, and racing priorities sometimes conflict with safety priorities (as in the 'how close is safe' decisions) but in most of the factors of this incident they did not conflict except in that the safety side simply did not seem to get sufficient attention.

 

This gets us to a core issue. And one that progress is only ever made with when bad things happen. This is a pro work environment. But this does not excuse the amateurs that don't clip on. The risks are the same. Just that the pro sails more, and the time x risk adds up.

Where we are seeing issues is that there isn't the culture of process that is required to make this work with such a short-handed boat. The VO70 races probably got away with laxness because they had more hands - however this doesn't mean the risk wasn't there - just that they got away with it. It is clear that all the boats are on the edge. Dong Feng nearly hit the reef. The others didn't. But this does not mean that the other boats are somehow immune from the problems that led to Vestas hitting the reef. So much of the commentary above is of the form "these guys are clearly idiots, they should never sail in the VOR again". This utterly misses the point. Vestas were probably no more lax than any of the other teams. They were just the first team to screw up when it really mattered. We are only half way into the second leg. There is every chance that another screw-up on another boat will happen. That is the real issue.

 

I like to make comparisons with other accidents that have complex underpinnings. The Mancondo accident in the Gulf of Mexico saw BP drop well over $20Billion in a screwup so huge that it takes some comprehending. For months millions of gallons of oil spewed from the well. Yet it took a series of about five different failures to allow it to happen. Multiple safety processes and systems failed. The question that was never voiced was simply - how close have other wells come to a similar disaster? And the answer was chilling. Many. A few times a year a well would come within one safety system of a disaster. Mancondo was the one where the last safety system also failed. It is the one you hear about. I will bet that Vestas is also the one we hear about because all the bad things lined up for them. The other teams could easily be thinking "there but for the grace of God go I". A witch burning is neither appropriate or useful. Working out, in detail, all the contributing factors, and working on processes and system design to avoid it happening again is what needs to be done (and is clearly what is being done. The VOR office are - for a change - smarter than the pundits on SA.)

 

But the point above about a pro work environment is very pertinent. The reactions of the Vestas team after the accident have received universal praise. This is codified action in practice. It isn't as if this is new. But the level of meticulousness needed is clearly higher in normal operation. Also, the VOR may need to reconsider the crew levels. It may be that 8 simply is not the right number.

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jzk, have you ever gone aground?

 

Probably dozens of times with me in charge of the vessel, and a few not. My groundings were all my fault but maybe one because the obstruction was not marked on the chart. There are places in the Bahamas/Florida that you just can't get to without feeling your way through. In those instances we are going slowly anticipating the bottom. One time was trying to get a good view of Dexter's apartment building in a powerboat. It was gentle in sand, and we were able to just winch off with the anchor. The sand there shoals differently all the time and is in a constant state of flux.

 

If I ever just sail right into an Island because I didn't zoom into the chart when there were 2 specs of land showing with massive depth contours, it will have been my fault. And that fault will have been gross negligence. If it is not my boat, I will tell the owner that it was my fault, no excuses. There is no excuse for not "zooming in."

 

Is your point that other people in the world have been grossly negligent a time or two in their lives? Despite that fact, these sailors were grossly negligent here.

 

Or is your point to just attack when you run out of intelligent arguments? You wouldn't' be the first here guilty of that.

 

When I was 20, I wrecked a car on Lake Shore drive due to pure gross negligence. These guys should still zoom in on their chart.

 

We aren't kicking these guys when they are down. Just asking for honest analysis of what happened and responsibility where warranted. Most of those here have been too busy circle jerking your heroes to do that. And hey, we have freedom of religion in this country, so continue your worship if you like. Chris' statement about how there was a breakdown, but just not his was embarrassing. Again, give him a blow job if you feel the need.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

read the transcript interview The boat did a 180 after it hit the reef.

 

Secondly you can't crash tack or gybe a VO 65 with the on watch crew. Or have you been completely ignorant to the workings of the boats? If a sail change is needed the off watch is required to wake up to assist. This isn't a 30' boat on a fresh water lake.

Oh and your phone is rated to get wet. If it is dunked repeatedly it will die.

 

My phone is rated to be under 1.m of fresh water for 30m. But I don't need it to do that. I just need it to be a backup to the other systems I have with me.

 

I said turn the boat 180 "as quickly as possible." I didn't say that should have called for a sail change. Can you read English? And, yes, it is probably best to turn the boat 180 BEFORE they crash into the island.

 

 

JZK I am sorry to publicly embarrass you like this but... you must do most of your sailing on the apartment toilet and any navigation from the back of your moms old stationwagon. GSM phones are at best line of sight. That means you phone no matter what the guy told you at the mall cannot see a tower 400 feet in the air beyond 20 miles. See means you might get those simpleton bars on your big waterproof screen. Now to some complex GSM sh*!. The towers are time division multiplexing. That is how the towers talk to a bunch of phones. When the tower sends your phone a signal for data you have a tiny time slot to respond. If you phone does not get its message back in time you are not there and the tower moves onto the next phone or device. Those messages fly back and forth at the speed of light. GSM times slots are set at 35km. In perfect conditions a GSM device can sink with a tower and communicate with a tower 35KM away. The laws of physics and the GSM standards get in the way of connecting to a tower past 35KM. The signal just cannot get back and forth fast enough. These guys were 200 miles from everywhere and nowhere. NO CELL COVERAGE. GSM CELL PHONES ARE WORTHLESS FOR MARITIME NAVIGATION. Yes, you can use the toy you picked up from the guy chewing gum at the mall in downtown miami and a few other places where you should not need it. But, in short order your mother will drive the family wagon to a Teddy Kennedy parking spot. Yea... come to think of it. Teddy should have done a 180 just before he entered the bridge and splashed the car.

 

I can't tell you how humiliated I am right now. Just so you know, no cell coverage is necessary for the Navionics app. The charts are pre-downloaded. All that is necessary is a GPS signal, and that works just fine 200 or 2000 miles from anywhere. But thank you for the cell phone lesson regardless.

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Well, not the press conference that would follow a thorough investigation but some more information.

 

Interesting that they had sailed over shallow water, 40nm, several times during the tropical storm prior to hitting and in a heavier sea state (with troughs) and thought that it was safe and normal.

 

Big emphasis on human error and Wouter and a mention by the Campaign to keep Nico as skipper. I still sense some distention between Wouter and Nico but I may be reading into it.

 

IMHO, I think it would be a big mistake to make Wouter the fall guy in this incident. There may be pressure to do so and so to tidy up this situation and appease some critics. Historically speaking, it's not uncommon for people of substance to overcome a catastrophic mistake and persevere. I think he is far too much of a talent to throw away and I think he is now a far more experienced seaman then when he started. Does Wouter have a history of failures or questionable decisions or is this mistake, catastrophic as it is, uncommon?

 

In everyday experience, isn't it those life changing, unexpected, sometimes tragic circumstances that makes us stronger, wiser and better prepared?

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Sad on so many levels....it seems the facts will never be made public. A narrative will be created will be distributed and after a bit of fuss and fury VOR.Vestas ,like politicans ,understand any controversy and dispute of the narrative will soon slip over the horizon aft. After reading the highlights of the Press conference....it occured to me that the weeks following the wreck will be far worse for those involved,especially Wouter and Nico, than the actual event,and that was freak'n BAD. PTSD...I am backing out of this discussion as I've made my points.

There is still the investigation to follow and the interview between Clean and Nico, although I'm wondering now if that interview will be allowed to go forward. I said the same thing previously, the wreck is probably nothing compared to what they are going through now.

 

Give it time.

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Seems to me if they had turned and tried to go upwind they would have grounded out the keel and boards and ended up sinking in deeper water. In that sense it was better to run full tilt up on the reef after the first bang.

Maybe, but who would make that kind of decision? Best to try everything possible to keep from hitting the island. Turning the boat 180 in some manner as quickly as possible is the safest thing to do.

read the transcript interview The boat did a 180 after it hit the reef.

 

Secondly you can't crash tack or gybe a VO 65 with the on watch crew. Or have you been completely ignorant to the workings of the boats? If a sail change is needed the off watch is required to wake up to assist. This isn't a 30' boat on a fresh water lake.

Oh and your phone is rated to get wet. If it is dunked repeatedly it will die.

 

as i said above, one option was just to blow the sheets and let the boat stop or slow down

 

also, we have seen video of the boats crash gybing while broaching to leeward - at least i saw a video of a VOR 70 doing it.

 

it didn't look like much fun, but it was certainly more fun than hitting a reef!

 

I am pretty sure everyone on the boat wishes they had managed to do any sort of course alteration - including a crash gybe - rather than hitting the reef.

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jzk, have you ever gone aground?

 

Probably dozens of times with me in charge of the vessel, and a few not. My groundings were all my fault but maybe one because the obstruction was not marked on the chart. There are places in the Bahamas/Florida that you just can't get to without feeling your way through. In those instances we are going slowly anticipating the bottom. One time was trying to get a good view of Dexter's apartment building in a powerboat. It was gentle in sand, and we were able to just winch off with the anchor. The sand there shoals differently all the time and is in a constant state of flux.

 

If I ever just sail right into an Island because I didn't zoom into the chart when there were 2 specs of land showing with massive depth contours, it will have been my fault. And that fault will have been gross negligence. If it is not my boat, I will tell the owner that it was my fault, no excuses. There is no excuse for not "zooming in."

 

Is your point that other people in the world have been grossly negligent a time or two in their lives? Despite that fact, these sailors were grossly negligent here.

 

Or is your point to just attack when you run out of intelligent arguments? You wouldn't' be the first here guilty of that.

 

When I was 20, I wrecked a car on Lake Shore drive due to pure gross negligence. These guys should still zoom in on their chart.

 

We aren't kicking these guys when they are down. Just asking for honest analysis of what happened and responsibility where warranted. Most of those here have been too busy circle jerking your heroes to do that. And hey, we have freedom of religion in this country, so continue your worship if you like. Chris' statement about how there was a breakdown, but just not his was embarrassing. Again, give him a blow job if you feel the need.

100 percent right in my opinion

 

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Well, not the press conference that would follow a thorough investigation but some more information.

 

Interesting that they had sailed over shallow water, 40nm, several times during the tropical storm prior to hitting and in a heavier sea state (with troughs) and thought that it was safe and normal.

 

Big emphasis on human error and Wouter and a mention by the Campaign to keep Nico as skipper. I still sense some distention between Wouter and Nico but I may be reading into it.

 

IMHO, I think it would be a big mistake to make Wouter the fall guy in this incident. There may be pressure to do so and so to tidy up this situation and appease some critics. Historically speaking, it's not uncommon for people of substance to overcome a catastrophic mistake and persevere. I think he is far too much of a talent to throw away and I think he is now a far more experienced seaman then when he started. Does Wouter have a history of failures or questionable decisions or is this mistake, catastrophic as it is, uncommon?

 

In everyday experience, isn't it those life changing, unexpected, sometimes tragic circumstances that makes us stronger, wiser and better prepared?

.

 

...good point I suppose. Fingers certainly seem to be pointing at Wouter,he seems to be the only one with a heaping plate of crow pie. It would be a convenience to dispense with him,,but as you say,it's possibly worth questioning.

 

...personally,I feel it worth looking at the general climate of fatigue that can develop at times during the race and see if there's something worth addressing there.,but otherwise wouldn't take issue if Wouter's deep 6'ed from the crew for what seems like an obvious and very expensive guffaw.

 

 

 

 

jzk, have you ever gone aground?

 

Probably dozens of times with me in charge of the vessel, and a few not. My groundings were all my fault but maybe one because the obstruction was not marked on the chart. There are places in the Bahamas/Florida that you just can't get to without feeling your way through. In those instances we are going slowly anticipating the bottom. One time was trying to get a good view of Dexter's apartment building in a powerboat. It was gentle in sand, and we were able to just winch off with the anchor. The sand there shoals differently all the time and is in a constant state of flux.

.........

........

We aren't kicking these guys when they are down. Just asking for honest analysis of what happened and responsibility where warranted. Most of those here have been too busy circle jerking your heroes to do that. And hey, we have freedom of religion in this country, so continue your worship if you like. Chris' statement about how there was a breakdown, but just not his was embarrassing. Again, give him a blow job if you feel the need.

 

 

.......JZ...are you the 'doctor crash' as featured on that magazine from days gone by? :huh::rolleyes:

 

 

......FFS...is there anything wrong with S'ingTFU a bit to let the human emergency dissipate enough for the team to gather themselves enough to make their statement ,as they did this morning, before acting as judge ,jury, and executioner?? Under the various circumstances they've been through,I believe that all parties have done an amazing job of being incredibly open-book over all of this....indeed this is rather unprecedented,,but still seems not enough for you! ...'jerk-off' indeed. <_<

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So given what we know - my take now:

 

1. The team admits they simply did not ever zoom in on the chart. That's a simple human error given all the signals on the chart that it should be zoomed in on (both shoal area and the purple territorial limit lines cry out for further investigation). It is also a management process error (lack of double checking of a very fundamental process crying out for checking)

 

2. This area was originally excluded (we are still not 100% certain about that but I am guessing it was so, with a non-public exclusion zone). It was opened up the day before the start, and 'should have been' examined in detail then. But everyone was busy with specific pre-start activities and it was not done. It seems that there was the idea that it would happen after the start, but again everyone was busy and it did not get done. This was a management (priority/follow-up) failure.

The team has not specifically mentioned fatigue as a root cause of either of the above errors. So, we don't (yet) know how important that factor was.

 

3. Correct use of the depth sounder (min depth alarm) and/or radar (guard zone) could have avoided this incident, even given the above two errors, but they were (apparently) not used. That is a process error.

4. The charting zoom is a problem. It appeared as a systematic problem, to other boats in the fleet, and not just on this boat. It should be 'fixed'. The Nav and Skipper 'should have' been well familiar with the problem and had process to deal with it, because it is a well known and documented issue. But the charting industry needs to get its act together and address this. The charting should help, not hinder, safe operation. It will be slow and painful, but Volvo, Vestas and the incident team could leave a lasting mark on the sport if they got the industry to fess up and start working on the problem.

 

5. When the crew saw the breaking water there was no reaction. They had little time, and they thought they knew there were no dangers, and it unfortunately timed at the bottom of the sleep cycle. But there 'should be' a trained reaction/process (which did not happen) when the deck spots an unexpected hazard. Someone should at least immediately check the plotter at high zoom, the AIS and the radar. I am not sure with these boats when in the process the helmsman should react, but given their speeds, it would have to be pretty early on. I know they would hate to lose ground and it will be one of those racing vs. safety trade-off, but there should at least be a very clear bright line when(and how) the helm reacts to such events.

 

6. The (aft) watertight bulkhead most likely saved lives. The keel design was structurally 'strong enough' and it was excellent that the bulb broke first. Generally the boat builders and designers deserve praise.

 

7. It is not clear that pfd's or tethers would have been any benefit if the boat had sunk, but it may reflect a lack of 'safety culture' that the crew did not (appear to have) have gear on. I know racers (and in fact most of us with a bunch of offshore miles) tend to not wear this stuff on 'nice tropical nights', but this is a pro work environment. Yes, this is a race, and racing priorities sometimes conflict with safety priorities (as in the 'how close is safe' decisions) but in most of the factors of this incident they did not conflict except in that the safety side simply did not seem to get sufficient attention.

Thanks Estar. The emphasis is on "Team"and "systems" failure. And yes, kudos to the designer and builders. Amazing really that the keel didn't tear out at the ram and flood the boat.

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Sad on so many levels....it seems the facts will never be made public.

 

If this was the Cup, I'd agree, and I think it's sad that their lack of transparency has infected you to think that the rest of the sport works that way too.

 

The facts may never be made public, but they'll come out one way or another as long as I am around.

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IMHO, I think it would be a big mistake to make Wouter the fall guy in this incident. There may be pressure to do so and so to tidy up this situation and appease some critics. Historically speaking, it's not uncommon for people of substance to overcome a catastrophic mistake and persevere. I think he is far too much of a talent to throw away and I think he is now a far more experienced seaman then when he started. Does Wouter have a history of failures or questionable decisions or is this mistake, catastrophic as it is, uncommon?

 

 

 

If I made that mistake, I would fully expect to take the blame - pretty much all of it - that's assuming no new significant information comes to light

 

I'm not saying there weren't contributing factors - there always are - but the navigator has a position of huge responsibility.., and that's just the way it is.

 

Sure, he's a talented guy, and i expect he will work again - i'm not saying he shouldn't.

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jzk, have you ever gone aground?

 

Probably dozens of times with me in charge of the vessel, and a few not. My groundings were all my fault but maybe one because the obstruction was not marked on the chart. There are places in the Bahamas/Florida that you just can't get to without feeling your way through. In those instances we are going slowly anticipating the bottom. One time was trying to get a good view of Dexter's apartment building in a powerboat. It was gentle in sand, and we were able to just winch off with the anchor. The sand there shoals differently all the time and is in a constant state of flux.

 

If I ever just sail right into an Island because I didn't zoom into the chart when there were 2 specs of land showing with massive depth contours, it will have been my fault. And that fault will have been gross negligence. If it is not my boat, I will tell the owner that it was my fault, no excuses. There is no excuse for not "zooming in."

 

Is your point that other people in the world have been grossly negligent a time or two in their lives? Despite that fact, these sailors were grossly negligent here.

 

Or is your point to just attack when you run out of intelligent arguments? You wouldn't' be the first here guilty of that.

 

When I was 20, I wrecked a car on Lake Shore drive due to pure gross negligence. These guys should still zoom in on their chart.

 

We aren't kicking these guys when they are down. Just asking for honest analysis of what happened and responsibility where warranted. Most of those here have been too busy circle jerking your heroes to do that. And hey, we have freedom of religion in this country, so continue your worship if you like. Chris' statement about how there was a breakdown, but just not his was embarrassing. Again, give him a blow job if you feel the need.

 

I love when sailors try to play lawyer, but if you learned everything you know about the law from LA Law and CSI Miami, you shouldn't talk about it as if you understand it.

 

"Gross negligence" does not mean 'lots of negligence'. it means something that has literally zero relevance to this situation under international maritime law.

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You guys are all whack... the boys on deck had NO clue what was in front of them, port, starboard, windward or leeward. They were sailing like it was deep water all around.

Nobody below had much clue either, otherwise the nav station would have be full go at low zoom. They would have been shooting info to the on deck team. there would be a lookout standing on the windward rail.

 

They wouldn't have been sailing directly to the reef!

 

The second they hit they were doomed! The rudders sheared, the boat went into a skid and they skipped up on the reef.. Game over.

 

Exactly. Hitting a rock at 20kts and going into a spin sheared what was left of all the foils except the keel. There was nothing they could do. All these people talking about "turning head to wind". Like it is some old war pony. Not how these machines are made. Maybe despite having two rudders, they still need an emergency rudder? One not in the water?

 

And yeah, they had no clue what was in front of them or port or starboard. And who's fault is that? Wouter is trying to take the blame by talking about zoom levels. That is awful big of him, but these boats are so short-handed, and so fast, that you can't just put yourself on auto-pilot and expect just one other person has you covered. The captain, watch captains, helm and navigator all have to have 100% acknowledged awareness of the entire 360 degree path and routing options for at least the distance you cover in one watch, plus the watch overlap. They should also be aware of safe harbor options in case of emergency (and I don't know if anybody has brought that up). What if something else catastrophic had occurred and they were forced to quickly abandon ship in open water, but didn't know that this land was so close by? If they didn't properly share information like this, what else was not shared?

 

Acknowledged communication in this case means you record that you have completed your handoff checklist. You have a checklist of things you do when you come on and go off watch. A simple spreadsheet documenting crew shift essentials: "Brief new WC of routing option details for next watch" - initialed check. With a corresponding "Review of previous WC routing option details" - initialed check. Granted, a procedure like this may engage two crew for 20-30 minutes, but that is not really avoidable.

 

I keep hearing people talk about this as a navigation problem, a technology problem, a personal failing, etc.. Sure, those are all elements of it, but on reflection (IMO), it was a breakdown of the watch system, or a watch system that was not good enough to begin with.

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Sad on so many levels....it seems the facts will never be made public.

 

If this was the Cup, I'd agree, and I think it's sad that their lack of transparency has infected you to think that the rest of the sport works that way too.

 

The facts may never be made public, but they'll come out one way or another as long as I am around.

Yeehaw!

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