Coolerking

More than 30 killed off santa cruz island

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15 minutes ago, Parma said:

That is soooooo funny.

You obviously are not in the great hate of kalifornia.

Edit: to clarify, for example San Francisco just declared the NRA a terrorist organization, which was not in their jurisdiction either. Politicians here just do whatever the popular mood is w/o regard to legality, morality or jurisdcition: as long as it gets votes, it's good.

There is no doubt in my mind that new regs are on the way - if you want your license you must comply.

California, not the right coast, leads the country.  Buckle up and expect intelligent government.

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I've not chimed in on this thread, waiting for definitive info on how it happened (possibly months now), which given the immolation of the boat may never be forensically determined.  That being said, it's obvious a rapid fire trapped and gassed persons down below and they never had a chance.

I'll take 3 steps back and say that 40 passenger dive/fishing boats in So Cal. have an exemplary safety record,  many hundreds of thousands of client trips over the last 50 years, a record close to commercial airline safety, and much better than the risk you take driving on So Cal freeways to get to the boat. This fire/sinking while at anchor is an extremely rare anomaly.

I'm not denying it's a tragedy, only that we chill and realize the risk/reward ratio of 3 days of primo commercial dive experiences at Santa Cruz Island has a very low risk, will continue to be so and more stringent government  safety regs. may not make it incrementally safer, just much more expensive.  Let's not go there, the medium boat sized charter fleets are safety oriented and have a stellar track record.

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1 hour ago, axolotl said:

I've not chimed in on this thread, waiting for definitive info on how it happened (possibly months now), which given the immolation of the boat may never be forensically determined.  That being said, it's obvious a rapid fire trapped and gassed persons down below and they never had a chance.

I'll take 3 steps back and say that 40 passenger dive/fishing boats in So Cal. have an exemplary safety record,  many hundreds of thousands of client trips over the last 50 years, a record close to commercial airline safety, and much better than the risk you take driving on So Cal freeways to get to the boat. This fire/sinking while at anchor is an extremely rare anomaly.

I'm not denying it's a tragedy, only that we chill and realize the risk/reward ratio of 3 days of primo commercial dive experiences at Santa Cruz Island has a very low risk, will continue to be so and more stringent government  safety regs. may not make it incrementally safer, just much more expensive.  Let's not go there, the medium boat sized charter fleets are safety oriented and have a stellar track record.

No, it’s not obvious how fast the fire was, because everyone was ASLEEP! No one was on watch, which is a major fail. I’d say a criminal fail. 

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2 hours ago, axolotl said:

I've not chimed in on this thread, waiting for definitive info on how it happened (possibly months now), which given the immolation of the boat may never be forensically determined.  That being said, it's obvious a rapid fire trapped and gassed persons down below and they never had a chance.

I'll take 3 steps back and say that 40 passenger dive/fishing boats in So Cal. have an exemplary safety record,  many hundreds of thousands of client trips over the last 50 years, a record close to commercial airline safety, and much better than the risk you take driving on So Cal freeways to get to the boat. This fire/sinking while at anchor is an extremely rare anomaly.

I'm not denying it's a tragedy, only that we chill and realize the risk/reward ratio of 3 days of primo commercial dive experiences at Santa Cruz Island has a very low risk, will continue to be so and more stringent government  safety regs. may not make it incrementally safer, just much more expensive.  Let's not go there, the medium boat sized charter fleets are safety oriented and have a stellar track record.

Agreed, a lot of USCG rules are based on past accidents.......no accidents, no rules

now, a sleeping area for ~40 people with only 2 exits might be fine if there was a full sprinkler system......once the fire gets going you have to evacuate all those people through a hatch, say it takes 15 seconds a person, that’s 10 minutes to evacuate everyone, it’s just not going to happen 

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11 hours ago, Training Wheels said:

No, it’s not obvious how fast the fire was, because everyone was ASLEEP! No one was on watch, which is a major fail. I’d say a criminal fail. 

You nailed that one.  The crew, captain, and owners will be slow roasted.  The underwriter will simply pay out the policy limits and disappear. In a few years small charter boats will disappear  or look very, very diffferent.

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15 hours ago, bodega87 said:

I have to clarify this; as a professional involved in the fire service, you're wrong on pretty much every point. Please don't make shit up that you clearly just don't know about. 

The only point I'll bother of clearing up is that one about people peacefully slumbering to their deaths. I would be that every single person was awake, and at best they passed out in a terrible coughing panic before being burned alive, though I'm not sure that all of them would have. 

This boat was designed and built before the days of smoke detectors.  The result the boat was outfitted with $9.99 independent battery operated devices like you find at Home Depot or Walgreens.  After disturbing the guest and help in the past.  Likely the batteries were removed.  #RealWorld     

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15 hours ago, hasher said:

California, not the right coast, leads the country.  Buckle up and expect intelligent government.

I hope you're right, and I won't be personally impacted , but I fear a whole new set of regulations for not only dive boats but fishing, whale watching and even smaller 6pac boats simply because some unknowing individual wants to make a name for themselves or because they want to share their moral outrage..

Might not be a big deal ; don't know how easily those boats will be able to absorb those costs. Compliance could very well be the bigger issue.

I just hate it when I see people unnecessarily put upon, so I hope you're right. 

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43 minutes ago, Parma said:

I hope you're right, and I won't be personally impacted , but I fear a whole new set of regulations for not only dive boats but fishing, whale watching and even smaller 6pac boats simply because some unknowing individual wants to make a name for themselves or because they want to share their moral outrage..

Might not be a big deal ; don't know how easily those boats will be able to absorb those costs. Compliance could very well be the bigger issue.

I just hate it when I see people unnecessarily put upon, so I hope you're right. 

There's a reason the NTSB makes a thorough investigative process.

Do note that in the fire on a T boat in Florida in 2018, NTSB mentioned that the CG had not acted on all the NTSB recommendations from an earlier fire with the same company -- in I think 2004. Sometimes the CG does not act on the NTSB recommendations.

But some changes would be very good without costing much. The tragedy of course is that a better design relative to evacuation combined with a more comprehensive alarm system combined with an effective watch would have prevented this tragedy. If the watch had failed but the alarm system was effective, and the evacuation routes actually redundant, you would be reading about a rescue at sea, not a recovery of bodies. Somehow toxic smoke went undetected until people were dead, the boat was post flashover or both. That is not supposed to happen. The intent of the regulations in subchapter T was to provide a margin of safety. It didn't. And therefore the investigation is extremely important. All this hand-wringing over "losing" the dive boat industry is terribly premature. Let's get this right.

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16 hours ago, axolotl said:

I've not chimed in on this thread, waiting for definitive info on how it happened (possibly months now), which given the immolation of the boat may never be forensically determined.  That being said, it's obvious a rapid fire trapped and gassed persons down below and they never had a chance.

I'll take 3 steps back and say that 40 passenger dive/fishing boats in So Cal. have an exemplary safety record,  many hundreds of thousands of client trips over the last 50 years, a record close to commercial airline safety, and much better than the risk you take driving on So Cal freeways to get to the boat. This fire/sinking while at anchor is an extremely rare anomaly.

I'm not denying it's a tragedy, only that we chill and realize the risk/reward ratio of 3 days of primo commercial dive experiences at Santa Cruz Island has a very low risk, will continue to be so and more stringent government  safety regs. may not make it incrementally safer, just much more expensive.  Let's not go there, the medium boat sized charter fleets are safety oriented and have a stellar track record.

But the Lawyers will fuck it up for everyone.

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On 9/6/2019 at 7:57 PM, Lark said:

Of course eliminating three berths cuts the lifetime earning potential, therefore the value of the boat, by 9%.  This is not something an owner or mortgage holder would willingly accept without force of regulation.

Only if it was always at capacity - which it wasn't.

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2 hours ago, W9GFO said:

Only if it was always at capacity - which it wasn't.

Others raised good points about comfortable capacity vs berth space, since the customer pays for an experience instead of mere transportation like an airliner.   I had assumed recreational excursions would be booked solid on a holiday weekend, presumably one of their busiest weekends of the year.    Failure to successfully book the boat could reflect on deeper issues.   Perhaps not.   The berths as designed could be in excess of the working capacity of the boat, in which case a simple renovation to improve the customer experience and increase safety should have been made years ago.   There are always choke points in any operation.   Insufficient demand, insufficient labor, insufficient capacity at some point of the service (galley, dive group size, bunks available, etc.   if it was demand cash could have been tight.   I’d it was labor, watches could have been sacrificed or overwork caused somebody to fall asleep on duty.   I’d it was simply poor design of the boat and more bunks then she could service in customers, then I agree the obvious solution in hindsight would have been to tear out a stack of bunks and add something more useful to the customers while  making evacuation easier.

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6 minutes ago, Lark said:

Others raised good points about comfortable capacity vs berth space, since the customer pays for an experience instead of mere transportation like an airliner.   I had assumed recreational excursions would be booked solid on a holiday weekend, presumably one of their busiest weekends of the year.    Failure to successfully book the boat could reflect on deeper issues.   Perhaps not.   The berths as designed could be in excess of the working capacity of the boat, in which case a simple renovation to improve the customer experience and increase safety should have been made years ago.

Somebody earlier mentioned that the boat had been chartered by a single group for Labor Day and was not sold on a person-by-person basis.  

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What was the capacity of the Great Escape when Captain Tim ran it ?  I seem to remember center bunks only two high and the cabins were certainly only two high with the top bunk being a single ?  I do remember thinking it could still trap you if it started sinking and I do not remember any mention of an escape hatch but I assume there must have been ?  Captain Tim ran such a great operation (with a great crew) that I put aside the somewhat uneasy feeling down below.

 

-Sven

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I read that post after I posted my conjecture.  Another possible explanation.   

Edit.   This also means that reducing bunk space would have affected the value of the boat when it wasn’t chartered by a single group.     An owner could not be expected to do so without clear reason,   As the safety record was good prior to this, and here were no regulations forcing them to decrease revenue, there would be no incentive for the owner to take a pay cut.   

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We don't know how long the fire may have been smoldering and generating CO before it was discovered.  Basically, the discovery time is not the start time. So a crew member on watch could plausibly have been overcome by CO and unable to sound the alarm.  Has anyone explained why she was not with the rest of the crew?

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6 hours ago, Boo-Yah said:

You nailed that one.  The crew, captain, and owners will be slow roasted.  The underwriter will simply pay out the policy limits and disappear. In a few years small charter boats will disappear  or look very, very diffferent.

getting there.. FBI and ATF raid Truth Aquatics: "The office was ringed in red "crime scene" tape as more than a dozen agents took photos and carried out boxes.https://ktla.com/2019/09/08/search-warrants-served-at-santa-barbara-company-that-owned-dive-boat-that-burned/

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Had a chat with a lawyer buddy. Said the captain was likely toast.

why? Cause he was the captain. Happened on his watch. Fairness doesn’t matter.

 

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1 hour ago, Lark said:

Others raised good points about comfortable capacity vs berth space, since the customer pays for an experience instead of mere transportation like an airliner.   I had assumed recreational excursions would be booked solid on a holiday weekend, presumably one of their busiest weekends of the year.    Failure to successfully book the boat could reflect on deeper issues.   Perhaps not.   The berths as designed could be in excess of the working capacity of the boat, in which case a simple renovation to improve the customer experience and increase safety should have been made years ago.   There are always choke points in any operation.   Insufficient demand, insufficient labor, insufficient capacity at some point of the service (galley, dive group size, bunks available, etc.   if it was demand cash could have been tight.   I’d it was labor, watches could have been sacrificed or overwork caused somebody to fall asleep on duty.   I’d it was simply poor design of the boat and more bunks then she could service in customers, then I agree the obvious solution in hindsight would have been to tear out a stack of bunks and add something more useful to the customers while  making evacuation easier.

Why does failure to successfully book the boat to capacity on a holiday weekend keep coming up? Conception was under charter to Worldwide Diving Adventures (WDA) for a three-day voyage. It may be that Worldwide Diving Adventures might or might not have been satisfied with their occupancy rate / utilization rate but presumably Truth Aquatics - the owner operator of Conception was satisfied with the charter fee.

Given the boat was under charter it seems groundless speculation to equate the utilization rate with the boats profitability. Speaking personally less than 10% of the charters I've been directly involved in were any where near capacity (except the ones as a student where every berth was used to keep per person costs down and personal space was less important then).

Truth Aquatics might or might not be under financial duress but so far there is no reason raised in this thread to think that, In fact the opposite. Truth Aquatics has been referred to as "popular" and long running. Those are not normally characteristics of a struggling business. so let’s not feed gossip and groundless rumours.

If financial strain led to corner cutting that will come out in the NTSB work.

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7 minutes ago, KC375 said:

Why does failure to successfully book the boat to capacity on a holiday weekend keep coming up? Conception was under charter to Worldwide Diving Adventures (WDA) for a three-day voyage. It may be that Worldwide Diving Adventures might or might not have been satisfied with their occupancy rate / utilization rate but presumably Truth Aquatics - the owner operator of Conception was satisfied with the charter fee.

Given the boat was under charter it seems groundless speculation to equate the utilization rate with the boats profitability. Speaking personally less than 10% of the charters I've been directly involved in were any where near capacity (except the ones as a student where every berth was used to keep per person costs down and personal space was less important then).

Truth Aquatics might or might not be under financial duress but so far there is no reason raised in this thread to think that, In fact the opposite. Truth Aquatics has been referred to as "popular" and long running. Those are not normally characteristics of a struggling business. so let’s not feed gossip and groundless rumours.

If financial strain led to corner cutting that will come out in the NTSB work.

Truth offered many different types of packages.  Including Load Limit.  A premium excursion where the number of passengers were limited and premium food and meals were served.  Whole boat charters are a standard in the industry where a club or dive shop books a boat or resort and then resells the slots.  

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The bullshit has piled up here so deep and fast that I'm actually embarrassed that I even started this thread, If I could delete the whole fucking thing, I would.

Some of you should be ashamed, making comments accusing folks of things you have ZERO knowledge of.

There are a few here that know how and why this might happen through years of real world training and experience, the rest of you are losers who type shit to feed your tiny ego.

 

My thoughts and prayers are with the lost souls and all involved.

 

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Does anybody know where you can find the vessels tonnage?  Even the USCG dbase just lists length.

I'm asking seeing as it's my understanding that vessels under 100 tons don't need to have a 24/7 standing watch when anchored or berthed?

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1 minute ago, Dilligaf0220 said:

Does anybody know where you can find the vessels tonnage?  Even the USCG dbase just lists length.

I'm asking seeing as it's my understanding that vessels under 100 tons don't need to have a 24/7 standing watch when anchored or berthed?

So tell us, what exactly is a 100 ton vessel?

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20 minutes ago, Dilligaf0220 said:

Does anybody know where you can find the vessels tonnage?  Even the USCG dbase just lists length.

I'm asking seeing as it's my understanding that vessels under 100 tons don't need to have a 24/7 standing watch when anchored or berthed?

Your understanding appears to be wrong. @fastyacht previously quoted the watch requirements but I’ll quote them again, in context of chapter T.

  1. LII
  2. Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR)
  3. Title 46. Shipping
  4. Chapter I. COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
  5. Subchapter T. SMALL PASSENGER VESSELS (UNDER 100 GROSS TONS)
  6. Part 185. OPERATIONS
  7. Subpart D. Crew Requirements
  8. Section 185.410. Watchmen.

 

 

§ 185.410 Watchmen.

The owner, charterer, master, or managing operator of a vessel carrying overnight passengers shall have a suitable number of watchmen patrol throughout the vessel during the nighttime, whether or not the vessel is underway, to guard against, and give alarm in case of, a fire, man overboard, or other dangerous situation.

[CGD 85-080, 61 FR 1005, Jan. 10, 1996, as amended at 62 FR 51359, Sept. 30, 1997]
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4 minutes ago, KC375 said:

Your understanding appears to be wrong. @fastyacht previously quoted the watch requirements but I’ll quote them again, in context of chapter T.

  1. LII
  2. Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR)
  3. Title 46. Shipping
  4. Chapter I. COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
  5. Subchapter T. SMALL PASSENGER VESSELS (UNDER 100 GROSS TONS)
  6. Part 185. OPERATIONS
  7. Subpart D. Crew Requirements
  8. Section 185.410. Watchmen.

 

 

§ 185.410 Watchmen.

The owner, charterer, master, or managing operator of a vessel carrying overnight passengers shall have a suitable number of watchmen patrol throughout the vessel during the nighttime, whether or not the vessel is underway, to guard against, and give alarm in case of, a fire, man overboard, or other dangerous situation.

[CGD 85-080, 61 FR 1005, Jan. 10, 1996, as amended at 62 FR 51359, Sept. 30, 1997]

Thats pretty clear.

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And besides that, all vessels are required to have a watch. Just because you’re at anchor does not relieve you of watch standing. Do very many recreational sailors do it? No. But when I worked on commercial boats, we stood a watch at the dock, as required. 

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2 hours ago, Dilligaf0220 said:

Does anybody know where you can find the vessels tonnage?  Even the USCG dbase just lists length.

I'm asking seeing as it's my understanding that vessels under 100 tons don't need to have a 24/7 standing watch when anchored or berthed?

 

2 hours ago, Coolerking said:

So tell us, what exactly is a 100 ton vessel?

 

She was 98 GRT (Gross Regulatory Tons, U.S. Standard)

In U.S. passenger vessel regulations, vessels under 100 tons fall under one of two subchapters: T, and K. K applies where overnight passengers exceed 49 or day passengers exceed 149. This boat fell under T; and is commonly known in the business as a "T-boat."

100 gross tons in the US is different from the rest of the world (however you can choose to use international tonnage but it is more severe). In both US and international (and panama canal and suez canal) registered tons (gross tons, net tons) are all measures of volume, not of mass. 100 cubic feet = 1 ton.

If for some reason you really want to know about this stuff, go here:

https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO Documents/Marine Safety Center/Tonnage/Tonnage Guide 1 - Simplified Measurement.pdf?ver=2017-06-09-123757-680

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3 minutes ago, NotTrueWind said:

The foremost experts on vessel safety (the USCG) inspected his annual and gave him a tacit seal of approval to operated as is (a few minor infractions that were cured aside).  That's going to be hard to disregard in court.

If a watch was required and the captain did not enforce that requirement, he's likely to face 33 counts of negligence each potentially worth up to 10yrs.  The Duck boat captain in Missouri was indicted for 17 counts last year for his failure to correctly plan for and react to the thunderstorm that caused his boat to capsize. 

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3 hours ago, KC375 said:

§ 185.410 Watchmen.

The owner, charterer, master, or managing operator of a vessel carrying overnight passengers shall have a suitable number of watchmen patrol throughout the vessel during the nighttime, whether or not the vessel is underway, to guard against, and give alarm in case of, a fire, man overboard, or other dangerous situation.

If the watchman had patrolled the sleeping area at the right time he could have prevented this tragedy. 

However, the only way to be sure to be in the right place at the right time is to patrol the area continuously, or at least, very frequently. Is it reasonable to expect a watchman to patrol through a sleeping area every thirty minutes? Every fifteen minutes? Without any alarms sounding there would have been no reason to patrol the sleeping area more frequently than scheduled. If for instance we find out that they were scheduled to patrol every thirty minutes it would be easy to conclude that the interval was insufficient, then punish those responsible for establishing that interval. 

If the patrol interval were fifteen minutes then there would only be a 1 out of 3 chance that they would detect a dangerous situation - assuming that it would go from detectable to fatal in the space of five minutes. It is a 1 out of 7 chance (<14%) if it takes two minutes. At that rate, even if the watchman were sound asleep it would not be reasonable to blame them for the deaths since it is quite unlikely that a proper patrol would have made any difference.

A fire can go from nothing to fatal in a couple minutes. With that knowledge, the only reliable patrol interval is continuous.

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19 minutes ago, W9GFO said:

If the watchman had patrolled the sleeping area at the right time he could have prevented this tragedy. 

However, the only way to be sure to be in the right place at the right time is to patrol the area continuously, or at least, very frequently. Is it reasonable to expect a watchman to patrol through a sleeping area every thirty minutes? Every fifteen minutes? Without any alarms sounding there would have been no reason to patrol the sleeping area more frequently than scheduled. If for instance we find out that they were scheduled to patrol every thirty minutes it would be easy to conclude that the interval was insufficient, then punish those responsible for establishing that interval. 

If the patrol interval were fifteen minutes then there would only be a 1 out of 3 chance that they would detect a dangerous situation - assuming that it would go from detectable to fatal in the space of five minutes. It is a 1 out of 7 chance (<14%) if it takes two minutes. At that rate, even if the watchman were sound asleep it would not be reasonable to blame them for the deaths since it is quite unlikely that a proper patrol would have made any difference.

A fire can go from nothing to fatal in a couple minutes. With that knowledge, the only reliable patrol interval is continuous.

This is why the NTSB investigation is so important.

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In this case, a crewman finished cleaning the galley at 2:35 am and then went to bed.  The same crewman was awakened shortly after 3:00 by a sound in the main cabin which he investigated.  So, unless the "roaming" watchman is patroling on less than 30 minute intervals, it seems that the likelihood that the roaming watchman would have solved the problem is remote or, at least, uncertain.

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7 minutes ago, Team Subterfuge said:

In this case, a crewman finished cleaning the galley at 2:35 am and then went to bed.  The same crewman was awakened shortly after 3:00 by a sound in the main cabin which he investigated.  So, unless the "roaming" watchman is patroling on less than 30 minute intervals, it seems that the likelihood that the roaming watchman would have solved the problem is remote or, at least, uncertain.

Playing Devil's Advocate, how do we know there were not other lesser sounds that might have been precursors to the Big Bang?  If an awake person on watch is truly a requirement, I think they have a problem if that was not their practice or not followed that night.  

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41 minutes ago, Team Subterfuge said:

In this case, a crewman finished cleaning the galley at 2:35 am and then went to bed.  The same crewman was awakened shortly after 3:00 by a sound in the main cabin which he investigated.  So, unless the "roaming" watchman is patroling on less than 30 minute intervals, it seems that the likelihood that the roaming watchman would have solved the problem is remote or, at least, uncertain.

Obviously, we weren't there, so don't know what other signs of disaster might could have been detected by a watchman...but it seems even the most inattentive watchman might have noticed the boat fully engulfed in flames sometime shortly before the crew man who woke up and discovered the same...the boat after all was only 75 feet long, and there appear to be portlights in the deckhouse.  Whether a watchman could have prevented the tragedy or not seems to be made OBE by the lack of a watch.  So we may never know.

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Agents with the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other agencies searched Truth Aquatics' offices in Santa Barbara and the company's two remaining boats, ...

"a pretty standard" part of the ongoing investigation into the tragedy to determine whether any crimes were committed

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This is like your boat sinking in January and not having any lifejackets aboard. It is entirely possible everyone would have frozen to death anyway, but it sure won't look good in court.

 

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9 minutes ago, NotTrueWind said:

really?  A raid is standard?  I would think the first thing to do would if there was no suspicion of criminal intent would be to nicely ask for the files, emails, etc.

A judge would need to see probable cause before he signed off on a warrant, I would imagine.

Lt. Eric Raney with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office ... Raney described the search as “par for the course. You can only do so much with your basic investigative efforts, and at some point you have to use a search warrant as the means to collect information.”

...

Law enforcement sources told The Times last week that a preliminary investigation into the Conception boat fire had suggested serious safety deficiencies aboard the vessel, including the lack of a “roaming night watchman” who is required to be awake and alert passengers in the event of a fire or other dangers.

The probe also has raised questions about whether the crew was adequately trained and whether passengers received a complete safety briefing, said the sources, ...

 

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On 9/6/2019 at 11:33 PM, Boo-Yah said:

George Washington would have shot them for the  derelictions. 

This is not the military, and no he wouldn't have.

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We had a troop of girls overnight on the u

USS hornet. Not only did we have to have 2 competent souls on watch, we had a 30 minute required walkthrough. 

I don’t know that 30 min is adequate, but watching some videos of lithium battery explosions the only way to have an adequate watch would be constant, or have more effective preventive measures in place.

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2 hours ago, NotTrueWind said:

really?  A raid is standard? 

what raid?

Looks like a properly executed search warrant issued by a judge.  

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6 minutes ago, MR.CLEAN said:

what raid?

Looks like a properly executed search warrant issued by a judge.  

But raid sounds better than your version. 

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5 hours ago, NotTrueWind said:

really?  A raid is standard?  I would think the first thing to do would if there was no suspicion of criminal intent would be to nicely ask for the files, emails, etc.

A judge would need to see probable cause before he signed off on a warrant, I would imagine.

You don’t think 34 deaths as “probable” cause a crime might have been committed???

 

it may turn out there was no crime and no negligence, but chances of that are not that likely, I’d guess...

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I spent some time on the big grey boats as a 'roundsman' both in harbor and at sea.  It's boring as hell (except for those brief moments of terror).  Walking around a big boat is tedious and it is physically demanding climbing up and down all those ladders.  

However, the roundsman is expected to LOOK, SMELL and LISTEN for anything unusual.  What's unusual?  A burned-out lightbulb.  A drunk crewman.  A noisy fan.  A light where there shouldn't be one.  

99.999% of the roundsman's time is a complete waste of time, money and energy.  0.001% of the time the roundsman is the most valuable thing on the ship when they spot a leaking valve flooding the boiler room or the drunk guy choking on his vomit or an overheated extension cord (yup, to finding all of those).  Regardless, the roundsman is 100% of the time one element of an overall ship safety program.  

I will further add that, on the ships I served, while in harbor in addition to the roundsman going around every hour, both the Officer of the Day AND the Petty Officer of the Day went around the entire ship once per watch (every four hours).  

Of course, in addition to the roundsmen there was a staff at the gangway, automatic bilge alarms, automatic fire alarms and bunch of other safety stuff.  There are DAILY fire drills when in port and weekly major fire drills at sea.  Yup, the big grey boats take fire safety very, very, very seriously.  

 

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5 hours ago, NotTrueWind said:

really?  A raid is standard?  I would think the first thing to do would if there was no suspicion of criminal intent would be to nicely ask for the files, emails, etc.

A judge would need to see probable cause before he signed off on a warrant, I would imagine.

"Asking nicely" doesn't get you unfettered access to everything needed. And it is messy in court. A warrant exercised and all the evidence gathered legally in a rigorous manner is far preferable.

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    My Dad was doing his 'rounds' on one of the big gray ships as a young OOD and discovered the watchman stationed at the stern on man overboard detail cloaked in the night time shadows. From his actions it looked like he was stabbing at himself with a knife and there had been recent reports of lifejackets in the lockers with repeated punctures from an unknown source. Dad snuck up on the guy and confirmed that he did have a knife and was stabbing vigorously about his chest area. When he got some backup from the MP or whatever they have for onboard security they grabbed the weirdo and cuffed him and rushed him to the sickbay thinking he would be bleeding out. Turned out he had picked a knife with a blade barely longer than the life jacket was think and he just had a bunch of shallow puncture wounds for his efforts. Healed scars seemed to indicate he had been up to such odd behaviour for some time and was responsible for all the punctured vests on board. He went straight to the brig onboard for the rest of the cruise and then to military prison when they reached homeport. 

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This tragic accident has taught me a few lessons. One, people can blow up anything into a personal issue, well, I knew that. Two, lithium batteries mayn't be the future, apparently there is also an environmental cost associated with lithium salt extraction. I won't take battery charging for granted any more but will think harder about locations to minimize risk. Nicad may be worth hanging onto longer. Three, all the boring nights spent on night watch should've been taken more seriously. This is probably what it will boil down to, all the regs always have a loophole. The human factor can cover for that usually. Four, my skepticism about escape egress adequacy in public spaces and vessels is valid.

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26 minutes ago, Crash said:

You don’t think 34 deaths as “probable” cause a crime might have been committed???

 

it may turn out there was no crime and no negligence, but chances of that are not that likely, I’d guess...

In the cold daylight of hindsight, we can all envision things that might have helped avoid this catastrophe. Obviously the 'escape hatch' was unsuited to the job even if it met the letter of the law. There could have been a watch schedule (even though there were only five crew with 30+ clients to serve during daytime).  But we don't even know the cause of the fire at this point - a lot of information is missing. 

I object to the idea that we need to perp walk people in an uncertain situation like this, or work up the indignation of a lynch mob.  Let's meticulously investigate it, figure what happened, and hopefully prevent something like this from happening again.  

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12 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

"Asking nicely" doesn't get you unfettered access to everything needed. And it is messy in court. A warrant exercised and all the evidence gathered legally in a rigorous manner is far preferable.

Coast Guard and NTSB both have subpoena powers for documents and evidence.  Which is not unheard of at the "scene"  But if they want to go to the "cops" for it, that would be the FBI, not the local police.  And the US Attorney for that Distict would likely be the one shepherding it through a District Judge.   For a business office search, the FBI would have the experience the investigators might not have.

While a written final report from either agency may take a good while, a Formal Marine Board of Investigation, either separately, or jointly with NTSB and Coast Guard, is the usual procedure in a very serious marine casualty such as this.   This would be sooner rather than later, with witnesses questioned under oath, and would have "parties in interest" who can put questions to witnesses in addition to what the Board members ask.  This would be a public proceeding.   So much info may be "public" before the report(s) themselves are written, reviewed, and released which typically can take a lot of time.

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2 hours ago, Israel Hands said:

In the cold daylight of hindsight, we can all envision things that might have helped avoid this catastrophe. Obviously the 'escape hatch' was unsuited to the job even if it met the letter of the law. There could have been a watch schedule (even though there were only five crew with 30+ clients to serve during daytime).  But we don't even know the cause of the fire at this point - a lot of information is missing. 

I object to the idea that we need to perp walk people in an uncertain situation like this, or work up the indignation of a lynch mob.  Let's meticulously investigate it, figure what happened, and hopefully prevent something like this from happening again.  

Israel, I don't disagree with that mindset...I'm not suggesting everyone should be perp walked.  But just like we don't know the chain of events onboard that night, we also don't know what it is that law enforcement or the USCG or NTSB may have found that prompted them to go to the FBI and ATF in the first place, which apparently convinced the FBI and ATF to go to a Federal Judge and ask for a warrant, and for that Judge to believe there was probably cause, and issue the warrant.

I was just trying to say, with 34 folks who are dead, "probable" cause to go search (not arrest, not charge) is probably not that unreasonable.

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3 hours ago, sadug said:

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2019-09-11/coast-guard-issues-new-safety-rules-after-boat-fire

"

Dan Salas, the CEO and owner of Harbor Breeze Cruises in Long Beach, said the Coast Guard conducted annual safety inspections of his vessels on Monday. Salas said he noticed an immediate change in how the Coast Guard examined his vessels, which include the 500-passenger Sir Winston.

“We entered into a whole new world,” Salas said, offering condolences for the Conception victims. “It’s not just a routine safety inspection anymore. There was a higher level of scrutiny to firefighting equipment and emergency access. We can’t take anything for granted. We fully support the Coast Guard regulations.”

He ordered his employees to review safety procedures on his nine vessels and to make sure each worker is properly trained. Salas said the Conception tragedy “has rocked the marine industry to its core” and he has had difficulty sleeping at night since the accident.

"

 

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looked like recovery assets were out at SC Island based on marinetraffic.com observations.  News reports suggest vessel recovery tomorrow(Thurs Sept 12 2019) or Friday.

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Conception boat safety video – now on YouTube.

 

I get a very bad feeling every time I see that emergency exit (at 0.20).  How in the hell did that ever get approved?   

Once you climb up to the 3rd bunk on a wood ladder, then you must do the following: (1) lay on the bunk (2) sit upright to open the hatch (3) stand up on the bunk and (4) crawl out of 3-sided box under at table.   

Then the unsupported hatch slams shut behind you and the next person must repeat the process all over again. 

At the very least, during the safety briefing they should have made every passenger practice an emergency exit through that escape hatch.   

Capture - Conception exit.JPG

Capture - Conception exit 2.JPG

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So we haven't entered a whole new world, there are no new safety regulations, just a mealy-mouth notice to review your vessel with respect to existing regulations.

Yawn.

Yet another proof point that one cannot legislate safety and that common sense is the least common of the senses.

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They can’t issue new regulations that quickly, nor should they IMO.   Regulations have the force of law and therefore must go thru a review process, be formally proposed, and then have a public comment period before being finalized. This CG memo sets out common sense reminders to operators, just in case they haven't figure it out themselves from what has been reported so far.

Well drafted regs can make things better, ill-considered regs can be both destructively expensive to implement and ineffective, and in some cases counter-productive.  These boats have operated safely for decades, but the Conception loss shows that maybe some things should be different going forward.  It takes time, but the investigation needs to happen, then consider changes to the regs.  

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59 minutes ago, Moonduster said:

So we haven't entered a whole new world, there are no new safety regulations, just a mealy-mouth notice to review your vessel with respect to existing regulations.

Yawn.

Yet another proof point that one cannot legislate safety and that common sense is the least common of the senses.

Moon, I hear your frustration.

42 minutes ago, CruiserJim said:

They can’t issue new regulations that quickly, nor should they IMO.   Regulations have the force of law and therefore must go thru a review process, be formally proposed, and then have a public comment period before being finalized. This CG memo sets out common sense reminders to operators, just in case they haven't figure it out themselves from what has been reported so far.

Well drafted regs can make things better, ill-considered regs can be both destructively expensive to implement and ineffective, and in some cases counter-productive.  These boats have operated safely for decades, but the Conception loss shows that maybe some things should be different going forward.  It takes time, but the investigation needs to happen, then consider changes to the regs.  

Cruiser has it correct.

To change CFR you have to convene a working group to draft new regulations, then that has to be published in the Federal Register as an NPRM (Notice of Proposed Rule Making) with a public comment period. And then there is a process from there to make it into a published enforced regulation.

Somewhat predictably, the USCG safety bulletin only addresses operational aspects with the exception of Li Ion batteries, where they again through an operational framework hint at some changes that are probably overdue. But as for changes to Subchapter T they are staying in their lane for now. The NTSB will certainly have something to say. If you consider the scale of the human loss in this case, it really is going to have to lead to significant changes.

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2 hours ago, Morgan Crewed said:

Conception boat safety video – now on YouTube.

 

I get a very bad feeling every time I see that emergency exit (at 0.20).  How in the hell did that ever get approved?   

Once you climb up to the 3rd bunk on a wood ladder, then you must do the following: (1) lay on the bunk (2) sit upright to open the hatch (3) stand up on the bunk and (4) crawl out of 3-sided box under at table.   

Then the unsupported hatch slams shut behind you and the next person must repeat the process all over again. 

At the very least, during the safety briefing they should have made every passenger practice an emergency exit through that escape hatch.   

Capture - Conception exit.JPG

Capture - Conception exit 2.JPG

Watching that video makes the idea of trying to use that escape hatch under duress, terrifying.

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2 hours ago, Morgan Crewed said:

Conception boat safety video – now on YouTube.

 

I get a very bad feeling every time I see that emergency exit (at 0.20).  How in the hell did that ever get approved?   

Once you climb up to the 3rd bunk on a wood ladder, then you must do the following: (1) lay on the bunk (2) sit upright to open the hatch (3) stand up on the bunk and (4) crawl out of 3-sided box under at table.   

Then the unsupported hatch slams shut behind you and the next person must repeat the process all over again. 

At the very least, during the safety briefing they should have made every passenger practice an emergency exit through that escape hatch.   

Capture - Conception exit.JPG

Capture - Conception exit 2.JPG

 

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VWAPs proposal to the Working Group: "Hey, it's all good. Just require these here lexan private yachty hatches on the sides of all overnight t-boat hulls."

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It’s not as terrible an idea as the escape hatch in the middle of a potential fire trap in hindsight:(

 

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It is also easier than my upthread suggestion of taking a fire ax to the topsides.

In all seriousness, he planted a seed. If you don't take it literally like my flippant retort, well, it gets interesting.

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The modern Western, particularly American torso is unlikely to fit through that hatch.

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33 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Did you see the big sign saying not to block that opening? It might have been full of random shit on top of the hatch.

Who would block an emergency exit?

For the "uninformed" keep clear might not mean the same as don't put anything on this inviting flat surface begging to hold your bag etc.

Once the first thing has succumbed to the allure of an unoccupied flat surface the warning sign is obscured and the magnetic effect of unused stowage space kicks in.

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Well, good, a formal Marine Board of Investigation has just been convened, and at the Commandant (rather than local Sector) level:  https://www.workboat.com/news/passenger-vessels/coast-guard-convenes-high-level-investigation-of-dive-boat-fire/.   I hope the public hearings are useful for everyone, and give a quicker way for possible "fixes" to be made without waiting a year or two for a written report.

And the attached Marine Safety Information Bulletin ("MSIB) gives a good idea of where they are looking in order to make a recurrence less likely:  See MSIB-008-19 here:  https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Featured-Content/Mariners/Marine-Safety-Information-Bulletins-MSIB/

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6 minutes ago, nolatom said:

Well, good, a formal Marine Board of Investigation has just been convened, and at the Commandant (rather than local Sector) level.   I hope the public hearings are useful for everyone, and give a quicker way for possible "fixes" to be made without waiting a year or two for a written report.

And the attacherd Marine Safety Information Bulletin ("MSIB) gives a good idea of where they are looking in order to make a recurrence less likely:  See MSIB-008-19 here:  https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Featured-Content/Mariners/Marine-Safety-Information-Bulletins-MSIB/

That goes to the same bulletin I linked just upthread. Nothing in there yet other than operational stuff. As for the board yes, they are serious about this. How could they not be? Biggest loss of life in decades.

Here is the text:

Marine Safety Information Bulletin Commandant MSIB Number: 008-19 U.S. Coast Guard Date: September 10, 2019 Inspections and Compliance Directorate E-Mail: CGCVC@uscg.mil 2703 Martin Luther King Jr Ave SE, STOP 7501 Washington, DC 20593-7501

Passenger vessel compliance and operational readiness

On September 2, 2019, the small passenger vessel CONCEPTION caught fire and sank off the coast of Santa Cruz Island, California with loss of life. A Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation (MBI) has been convened and will conduct a thorough and comprehensive marine casualty investigation to determine the causal factors that contributed to this tragic incident. The Coast Guard and the maritime industry do not have to delay until the MBI has completed their investigation before taking immediate and positive action.

This bulletin identifies regulations related to firefighting, lifesaving, preparations for emergencies, and means of escape that serve as a reminder for owner and operators to ensure the safety of the passengers and crew while onboard. It is recommended that owners, operators, and masters of passenger vessels immediately complete the following:

Review the routes and conditions listed on the vessel’s Certificate of Inspection (COI) including the number of passengers and overnight passengers permitted. Ensure crewmembers are aware of and clearly understand their obligations including any additional requirements detailed on the COI.

Review emergency duties and responsibilities with the crew and any other crewmember in a safety sensitive position to ensure they comprehend and can comply with their obligations in an emergency to include the passenger safety orientation. Ensure emergency escapes are clearly identified, functional, and remain clear of objects that may impede egress.

Review the vessel log book and ensure records of crew training, emergency drills, and equipment maintenance are logged and current. Additionally, it is recommended that the master complete log entries to demonstrate to the Coast Guard that the vessel is operating in compliance with routes and conditions found on the COI.

Ensure all required firefighting and lifesaving equipment is onboard and operational.

Reduce potential fire hazards and consider limiting the unsupervised charging of lithium-ion batteries and extensive use of power strips and extension cords.

Review the overall condition of the passenger accommodation spaces and any other space that is readily available to passengers during the voyage for unsafe practices or other hazardous arrangements.

Owners, operators, or masters of passenger vessels that are unsure of the requirements placed on the vessel’s COI or otherwise required by regulation are encouraged to contact their local Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection. Alternatively, questions may be forwarded to Coast Guard Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance, Domestic Compliance Division (CG-CVC-1) by email at CGCVC@uscg.mil.

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2 hours ago, Moonduster said:

one cannot legislate safety 

It's just impossible!

 

 

Screen Shot 2019-09-12 at 11.34.36 AM.png

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Clean - that is half the story. Mandated equipment and training is 50% and a change in culture was the other 50%. See CRM for planes and BRM for boats.

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22 minutes ago, MR.CLEAN said:

It's just impossible!

 

 

Screen Shot 2019-09-12 at 11.34.36 AM.png

Is that raw data or normalized? Looks quasi-linear reduction but also looks like raw. So actually the improvements in safety are astounding.

 

Further to this premise, "you cannot legislate safety."

Sure you can. In the same way that you can actually implement a robust review process with real knowledge etc.

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2 hours ago, CruiserJim said:

They can’t issue new regulations that quickly, nor should they IMO.   Regulations have the force of law and therefore must go thru a review process, be formally proposed, and then have a public comment period before being finalized. This CG memo sets out common sense reminders to operators, just in case they haven't figure it out themselves from what has been reported so far.

Well drafted regs can make things better, ill-considered regs can be both destructively expensive to implement and ineffective, and in some cases counter-productive.  These boats have operated safely for decades, but the Conception loss shows that maybe some things should be different going forward.  It takes time, but the investigation needs to happen, then consider changes to the regs.  

Jim,

Agree with most of this, with exception of "These boats have operated safely for decades..."  We don't really know that.  What we know is that these boats have operated without major incident for decades.  It could be that they were safe, or it could be they were lucky.  Its likely a combination of the two.  That emergency hatch was never good, and fortunately apparently was never needed in the previous decades.  

As you imply, I suspect the boats were reasonably safe when built, and over time have become less safe, both from a systems getting old and worn standpoint, and from a systems not designed for today's loads/uses, i.e. charging multiple devices from a bunch of surge protectors just sitting on a shelf, etc, etc.

 

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8 minutes ago, Crash said:

Jim,

Agree with most of this, with exception of "These boats have operated safely for decades..."  We don't really know that.  What we know is that these boats have operated without major incident for decades.  It could be that they were safe, or it could be they were lucky.  Its likely a combination of the two.  That emergency hatch was never good, and fortunately apparently was never needed in the previous decades.  

As you imply, I suspect the boats were reasonably safe when built, and over time have become less safe, both from a systems getting old and worn standpoint, and from a systems not designed for today's loads/uses, i.e. charging multiple devices from a bunch of surge protectors just sitting on a shelf, etc, etc.

 

True, no major incidents - the sequence of events that resulted in the Conception disaster never occurred before.  Perhaps luck played a part here, and no doubt existing safety practices too.  I remember maybe 10-15 years ago, the dive boat Sundiver out of Long Beach lost a diver - they left the dive area before the last diver was aboard.  A breakdown of the buddy system and the headcount procedure.  Fortunately he was rescued by the Sea Scouts.  A failure of two separate procedures.

Agree the emergency hatch, especially the access from below, is terrible in hindsight.  I've never been aboard one of these boats, but I do have a touch of claustrophobia.  Looking at the bunkhouse pictures and imagining 30+ people in there triggers that in me.  

Complacency is a problem, a bit of human nature that is easy to succumb to.  "Nothing's ever happened in all these years, what's going to happen tonight that's any different?"  How risky is it to go to sleep while safely anchored on a calm night at Platts, which they done hundreds of times.

If a battery did cause this, will the investigators ever be able to determine this with certainty?  Whatever device might have been involved no longer exists after the intensify of the fire and then sinking, inverting and spending 10 days on the bottom.   FAA has battery regs, but their records have just 265 incidents since 1991.  Given the number of passengers and devices flying around every day, these things are statistically darned safe.  Very low probability of something going wrong, but huge consequences if it does go wrong.  

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21 minutes ago, CruiserJim said:

 Very low probability of something going wrong, but huge consequences if it does go wrong.  

That's the issue not so much with the batteries but with the overall fire safety philosophy on a T-boat. Sort of. There have been quite a lot of fires, mostly engineroom, over the years. The regulations depend heavily on crew vigilance and certain fire prevention measures. But there is not a systems approach to the whole problem of fire safety and evacuation. It isn't part of the regulations. And once fire starts, because the T-boats do not have a stringent set of requirements for combustibles and fire boundaries (indeed, you can build and outfit with combustibles), there is very little the crew can actually do to stop the fire. It is evacuation time. So there is a blind spot that is even more, well, shocking, because this event could be forseen, looking at previous casualties. Only a year ago in Florida, a T-boat ferry caught fire. The ultimate result was burned to the waterline after full evacuation. Notable was the location and weather (captain beached boat immediately, daylight, not extremely windy). At night in deep water would have been a big problem.

T-boats have such absurdly low requirements for fire suppression, there is really no chance to save the vessel in a (probably) statistically significant number of forseeable cases.

But the overall reaction to that casualty was poor operating practices and improper machinery (improper sight glass and improper fuel shutoffs) along with poor operating procedures. But this simply became the overall reason for the casualty. (1 died at hospital of smoke).

What to do when there are so many wooden or wooden-outfitted T-boats out there? How do you rewrite the regulations without ending everything and without also creating substandard "grandfathered" vessels? Not easy.

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17 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

That's the issue not so much with the batteries but with the overall fire safety philosophy on a T-boat. Sort of. There have been quite a lot of fires, mostly engineroom, over the years. The regulations depend heavily on crew vigilance and certain fire prevention measures. But there is not a systems approach to the whole problem of fire safety and evacuation. It isn't part of the regulations. And once fire starts, because the T-boats do not have a stringent set of requirements for combustibles and fire boundaries (indeed, you can build and outfit with combustibles), there is very little the crew can actually do to stop the fire. It is evacuation time. So there is a blind spot that is even more, well, shocking, because this event could be forseen, looking at previous casualties. Only a year ago in Florida, a T-boat ferry caught fire. The ultimate result was burned to the waterline after full evacuation. Notable was the location and weather (captain beached boat immediately, daylight, not extremely windy). At night in deep water would have been a big problem.

T-boats have such absurdly low requirements for fire suppression, there is really no chance to save the vessel in a (probably) statistically significant number of forseeable cases.

But the overall reaction to that casualty was poor operating practices and improper machinery (improper sight glass and improper fuel shutoffs) along with poor operating procedures. But this simply became the overall reason for the casualty. (1 died at hospital of smoke).

What to do when there are so many wooden or wooden-outfitted T-boats out there? How do you rewrite the regulations without ending everything and without also creating substandard "grandfathered" vessels? Not easy.

If they had followed the EXISTING regulations and had someone awake that would have been 75% of the battle right there and having an exit that was actually an exit was the other 75% :rolleyes:

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Not a boat thing but I think about the fire code for buildings;  it requires 2 means of exit from sleeping rooms, one directly to the outside (doorway, or a window with sill no more than 44" above the floor nor smaller than 5.3 square feet or 20" in any dimension).  When I was in the fire service I recall it being said that there had never been a multiple death fire in a fully sprinklered building, (I can't give a reference for this statement, but it never happened on my watch.)  How many folks plan what to do in a fire when sleeping in an unfamiliar place; boat or building?  Is there an operational smoke detector, openable window, baseboard heater/ignition source too close to couch/curtains/combustibles, path to exit stairs, etc.... Good things to think about when you check into a hotel room.

I thought the safety video was pretty good, slightly fast for this oldster, but short enough for my attention span.  I suppose it was meant to be viewed at home before arriving at the boat or maybe at the start of the safety briefing.  For overnighters, at least,  it definitely needed to be followed up with an onboard walk through by the captain with the group.  Would a required fire drill through that emergency exit be too much to ask of the industry?  It may show obvious deficiencies and lead to better design/solutions.

The sadness of this fire is hard to fathom.  RIP to the deceased,

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5 hours ago, KC375 said:

Watching that video makes the idea of trying to use that escape hatch under duress, terrifying.

KC,   Your post #382 above with the photos makes a good point, about physical movements needed to get from floor to bunk and into and through the escape hatch.  People have gotten bigger on average over the decades, and passenger boats have not always kept pace.  

The capsizing of the tour boat LADY D was caused in part by passengers moving to the low side en masse (mass??).  The boat was built when the average adult passenger weight "formula" was 140 lbs.  Average adult weight on Lady D was 168.   And I recall reading where the Coast Guard recently raised that weight figure from 165 (from the mid 1960's) to 180.  Some "head boats" had to cut down on the number of heads (bodies) they could take on board.

A fit 140 passenger might find that hatch to not be big problem to wriggle up to and through;  a 165, a challenge but still doable.  At 180, it might get dicey, and there are others behind you.

No offense intended to any divers, but I think scuba is one of the more "physically tolerant" sports for the experienced but very overweight--once you're in the water, you just get neutral, and relax as much as possible in order to use less gas and have a longer dive.  I've seen downright graceful divers who weigh twice or more than I weigh, and they make me look like a flailing air-hog.  Not a big deal on a day boat, and they're just part of the fellow-diver mix.   But getting up and  out of small spaces designed decades or half-centuries ago, may be less orderly and safe than originally intended.  I point no finger here, just an observation.

One more thing for the Formal Board to take a look at.

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4 hours ago, fastyacht said:

VWAPs proposal to the Working Group: "Hey, it's all good. Just require these here lexan private yachty hatches on the sides of all overnight t-boat hulls."

golly gosh there mr fastyacht maybe  multiple means of escape might be looked into and gee wizz if viable design, build whatever is necessary. 

 

 

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39 minutes ago, nolatom said:

 

The capsizing of the tour boat LADY D was caused in part by passengers moving to the low side en masse (mass??).  The boat was built when the average adult passenger weight "formula" was 140 lbs.  Average adult weight on Lady D was 168.   And I recall reading where the Coast Guard recently raised that weight figure from 165 (from the mid 1960's) to 180.  Some "head boats" had to cut down on the number of heads (bodies) they could take on board.

 

That is correct, it was the early 2000s when they changed that. The capsize on Lake George of Ethan Allen wasn't a USCG cert boat (NY) but because there had also been a recent duck boat tragedy and the pontoon boat capsize in Baltimore you mention it got their attention. If I could figure out how to get my pm to work again I'd tell you more "off the record."

 

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The Administrative Procedures Act (Congress) requires Federal agencies to go through public notice and comment, consider economic burden etc. when developing regulations.  The system is designed to resist change.  And the status quo is generally well represented by lobbyists.  

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7 minutes ago, NaptimeAgain said:

The Administrative Procedures Act (Congress) requires Federal agencies to go through public notice and comment, consider economic burden etc. when developing regulations.  The system is designed to resist change.  And the status quo is generally well represented by lobbyists.  

Ironically that's one of the laws that tripped up the present Administration on something not too long ago.

 

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2 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

Ironically that's one of the laws that tripped up the present Administration on something not too long ago.

 

The Supreme Court decision on the citizenship question for the 2020 census.

When I get on a boat or plane I generally focus first on how I'd get out or off.  I can't imagine ever wanting to bunk in a relatively closed space like that, especially with a group of strangers who likely also haven't had a lot of evacuation practice in the dark and maybe upside down.  Heck I try to stay in the front rows of an airplane or otherwise near a mid cabin door.

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25 minutes ago, Rasputin22 said:

That will teach those entitled assholes in first class!

Yes, it is amusing that first class has the highest fatality rate, but if safety was really the priority we would all fly facing backwards.

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