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These close-encounters do occur but not so often do we get to see them in real-time, this one worked out okay, but yes, kind of close.  Finally the bulker (I'm assuming it's the red icon) was doubly-burdened, since: a)sailboat  b) sail is crossing from ship's starboard.

https://gcaptain.com/vendee-globe-skipper-says-bulker-captain-needed-some-convincing-in-high-seas-crossing-situation/?subscriber=true&goal=0_f50174ef03-6cd46f12b8-139795957&mc_cid=6cd46f12b8&mc_eid=0a747aadd9

A practical tip if you're the sailboat some day:   On that ship's bridge is just one Mate, plus a non-officer "helmsman" who has little to do when on autopilot.  He/she may be the only "lookout", but probably isn't looking.  The Mate will be on 16, and will answer a hail if you call.  AIS is really helpful here, since you can call ship by name, which is way better than just "ship off my port bow", especially if there's other traffic around.  They may have set a CPA or distance-off alarm on their radar, or may not.  Mid-ocean, you may have to work at getting their attention.

Traditionally in terms of experience, the 8-12 watch, day or night, is the Chief Officer;  12-4 is the Third Mate, and 4-8 is Second Mate.  Sometimes the split watches around 1800 into two hours each.  But the Third Mate, presumably with the least experience, gets the "graveyard" watch.  Be extra careful therefore, at 4, 8, and 12, that's when they're changing watch, looking at chart or ECDIS, making a log entry.  And very likely, not looking out.  And changing course may mean more chart or log work since they've departed from trackline.  When you do get through, call whoever answers "Captain", they like it, and technically they are representing the Master when on watch.  

Oldendorff has a reputation as a good company with good officers, btw.  Glad they altered, even if it did take some conversation to get them to.  And good on our singlehanded sailor for being heads-up.  Unlike the ships, a singlehanded sailboat is not going to have someone looking out at all times.  That's the risk.  

We sailors like to complain, or at least comment (as our sailor did here) about ships not looking out or not answering the radio, or scaring us unnecessarily, or whatever.  But if you ever need a rescue far from shore out of rescue boat/helio range, the nearest ship, once notified by a Coast Guard or any other source of a distress call, will not hesitate in "breaking passage" and coming to the rescue.

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^ lots of good points ^

Calling a commercial vessel by name is a very good capability. Used to be, I was told that captains would answer if a woman's voice hailed them on the VHF, so I taught my wife how to use our radio and she grew to like talking on it. But 1- times have changed, there are a lot more women in the marine industry now and 2- it never was 100%

Big ships go deceptively fast, too. You can think you're going to clear ahead of them easily and suddenly find you're in the no-go cone in front of them, wondering if you've already disappeared below their bow rail (viewed from their bridge).

FB- Doug

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As a former ship’s master and avid sailor, I have mixed emotions about Boris’ incident.  Technically, everything was absolutely correct, good contact, good lookout, fair request.  Pity, that the watch officer was so reluctant to see/cooperate with the request.  Another thing to consider is that watch officers are often under somewhat,  how shall I say this, unrealistic ‘rules’ from a ship’s master who is overly controlling.  I.e. some foreign, junior officers operate in greater fear of disturbing the master and his rules than should be the case.  Make no mistake also, a 30 degree course change in mid ocean, in those swells, WILL bring the master to the bridge, out of curiosity if nothing else at that hour anyway.

Ultimately, even as that course change for the ship, was of no major affect to her voyage, neither would a 10 degree course change, made early by Boris, have likely impacted his race. He might have had to spend 10 minutes re-tweaking his sails and runners but... c’est la vie.  He made contact, soon enough to have a good outcome.  Had the ship refused to make the change, his work would have been heavier and his adrenaline would have really been running.  At his speeds, he may actually have had a greater opportunity to shift the outcome with less work than a crash course change made under stress.  BIG CAVEAT:  I wasn’t there.  I don’t know how close the CPA.  I don’t know the real work/risk involved in making even a small course adjustment on Boris’ part.  He should rightly have expected compliance to the rules and courtesy from the other vessel— all too often however, it isn’t given and mores the pity.  Sailors are the poor step child of the ocean going commercial business and we, sadly,  can’t really ever depend on them to ‘do the right thing’.

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26 minutes ago, Veeger said:

He should rightly have expected compliance to the rules and courtesy from the other vessel— all too often however, it isn’t given and mores the pity.  Sailors are the poor step child of the ocean going commercial business and we, sadly,  can’t really ever depend on them to ‘do the right thing’.

So let's hope he was more courteous in his request than he suggested in the interview. Since in a way he was representing all ocean sailors.  (But I imagine he was.)

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4 minutes ago, Israel Hands said:

So let's hope he was more courteous in his request than he suggested in the interview. Since in a way he was representing all ocean sailors.  (But I imagine he was.)

In my limited experience, the German ‘way’ tends to be a bit more direct and frank, than would be others’ approaches.  Some folks don’t take it as well as others....

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And remember the ships are working, have schedules to make, etc. We are out their recreating. Might want to take that into consideration when your trying to force a fully loaded bulker to make a 30 degree course change, when you could have avoided the situation to begin with. Seems  a kinda wanker move on Boris' part

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Ooookayy, fishing boats generally are not that speedy, and if they have gear out, they can'l really avoid you, even if you "technically" have right of way (unless they are trawling with nets on the bottom).  I wonder if he even saw them?

He's picked two take-long-time-to-maneuver-vessels to tangle with on the same spot of ocean.  I noticed from his video that Hannah Oldendorff looked like she was loaded, and I counted 9 cargo hold hatches along her length. I'm used to seeing them with 5, or  7 for the big Panamax ships.  

So I looked HANNAH up, she is---wait for it---300 meters by 50 meters.  That's huge.  That's  "New Panamax" size,  About 1000 feet long and 160 feet wide.  No wonder the Mate might have dragged his feet a little on changing course, it takes some time to make that starboard turn then steady her up, compared to some handy-size ship.  'The Colregs are sort of based generally on the general proposition to  have the faster vessel (power) yield right of way slower (sail).  But often, and as above, the modern racing sail vessels are way more maneuverable and faster, assuming they have the breeze, than that 13-knot bulk carrier or a what, 4-knot fishing vessel if they're fishing?   Our singlehander is pushing his luck.  Presumably he's finished by now.    

 

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4 hours ago, ROADKILL666 said:

That’s not close.You can’t see the captain.

Much less see how many fingers he's holding up

 

2 hours ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Interesting. Reported a few minutes ago. Now the same Vendee shipper has hit a fishing boat. https://gcaptain.com/vendee-globe-skipper-who-had-a-close-call-with-bulk-carrier-collides-with-fishing-boat/

One is an isolated incident. 2?

 

Beginning to look like the Vendee skipper is a bit of a dick

FB- Doug

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Had a run in with a ship 100 miles off the east coast of Aussie. 30+ knots, would have needed to gybe. Asked if the view from their stable platform, as opposed to us bouncing around, it looked like we would clear them.

No answer but they did a big course change, then came back up to pass clear behind. Gave them a big thanks, still no radio response.

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1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

Beginning to look like the Vendee skipper is a bit of a dick

Indeed.  But he has created some empirical data to assist anyone else contemplating navigating an IMOCA on a "get the f*ck out of my way" basis.

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1 hour ago, Steam Flyer said:

Beginning to look like the Vendee skipper is a bit of a dick

FB- Doug

Jeeze, give him a break.  He didn't know about the fishing vessel until he woke up crashing along the side of it - he was asleep and the alarms didn't go off!

Easy to be judgemental from an armchair ... <_<

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6 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

Jeeze, give him a break.  He didn't know about the fishing vessel until he woke up crashing along the side of it - he was asleep and the alarms didn't go off!

Easy to be judgemental from an armchair ... <_<

I'd be a lot more judgemental if it was me he crashed into, in his sleep

I suspect you would too.

Just because he's a big-shot singlehanded racer doesn't give him any extra rights.

To be sure, he did not do it on purpose so perhaps that was implied and I apologize if so.

FB- Doug

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5 hours ago, Recidivist said:

Jeeze, give him a break.  He didn't know about the fishing vessel until he woke up crashing along the side of it - he was asleep and the alarms didn't go off!

Easy to be judgemental from an armchair ... <_<

I wasn’t there and I never will be be but...

Maintaining a proper lookout???

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7 minutes ago, Black Sox said:

I wasn’t there and I never will be be but...

Maintaining a proper lookout???

Mate, that wasn't the issue.  We all know that single-handers are perforce weak in that area, despite alarms etc - the issue was whether the collision makes Boris a dick or not - taking into account his earlier request for a LARGE ship to alter course to allow him to cross safely.  

Personally, I think the very size of the ship justifies the request - if they came into close quarters, Boris would have very little hope of successfully avoiding.  Some SA'ers apparently see it differently ... I doubt they'd say so to Boris' face though.

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7 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

Mate, that wasn't the issue.  We all know that single-handers are perforce weak in that area, despite alarms etc - the issue was whether the collision makes Boris a dick or not - taking into account his earlier request for a LARGE ship to alter course to allow him to cross safely.  

Snip

Agreed.

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21 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

taking into account his earlier request for a LARGE ship to alter course to allow him to cross safely.  

err .................nope .

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12 hours ago, Matt DI said:

And remember the ships are working, have schedules to make, etc. We are out their recreating. Might want to take that into consideration when your trying to force a fully loaded bulker to make a 30 degree course change, when you could have avoided the situation to begin with. Seems  a kinda wanker move on Boris' part

Id say Boris was working too, with schedule. We might be recreating, but he was there in multi million business run.

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1 hour ago, Black Sox said:

Maintaining a proper lookout???

Yeah, I mean, who needs to sleep? It's only 80 days racing around the world singlehanded... 

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6 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

I'd be a lot more judgemental if it was me he crashed into, in his sleep

I suspect you would too.

Would you be sailing without AIS too?  Because Hermann was asleep with his AIS alarm on and it didn't detect the fishing boat.

Judgemental is not the word I would use to describe what I'd be if I'd crash into you then.

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2 minutes ago, chuso007 said:

Would you be sailing without AIS too?  Because Hermann was asleep with his AIS alarm on and it didn't detect the fishing boat.

Judgemental is not the word I would use to describe what I'd be if I'd crash into you then.

For all that (and I agree), Boris has been VERY shaken by the collision - the sheer fright of waking from the crash - the realisation of what has happened - the immediate fear for his boat, are we sinking?  What damage has been done?  How can I sort this?  Can I continue to the finish? 

A world class, promising and up and coming sailor has just learnt the most important lesson on his road to future success and greatness - humility!  

Boris will be back - and much tougher and smarter for this experience, horrible as it has been.  At least no-one died.

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My summary:

Boris "required" a large ship to alter course, in accordance with the letter of IRPCAS. (Whether he absolutely needed that to happen is, at present, being debated here.)

Boris was subsequently involved in a collision with a fishing vessel and was, apparently, asleep at the time. He was not strictly adhering to the letter of IRPCAS at the time.

So which is it:

a) IRPCAS are absolute, (so Boris was right in the first case and wrong in the second), or

b) IRPCAS are "guidance" (so Boris was wrong in the first case and right in the second).

c) Boris can have it both ways.

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8 minutes ago, Black Sox said:

My summary:

Boris "required" a large ship to alter course, in accordance with the letter of IRPCAS. (Whether he absolutely needed that to happen is, at present, being debated here.)

Boris was subsequently involved in a collision with a fishing vessel and was, apparently, asleep at the time. He was not strictly adhering to the letter of IRPCAS at the time.

So which is it:

a) IRPCAS are absolute, (so Boris was right in the first case and wrong in the second), or

b) IRPCAS are "guidance" (so Boris was wrong in the first case and right in the second).

c) Boris can have it both ways.

Ha - good one.  Do you mind if I take a month or 3 to see what (if any) further information comes to light?

My current take is that IRPCAS are paramount (not absolute) in that one MUST comply with them IF POSSIBLE.  If a vessel is not able to comply with their obligations, it is an ABSOLUTE obligation on the other vessel in a situation to do whatever that vessel can do to avoid a collision.

Based on Boris' video, where he says he used ALL previous encounters to prove that his alarm systems were working, I tend to the view that he had done all that was reasonably possible in the way of maintaining a watch (it being a human requirement to sleep sometimes).  If further information comes to light, I would be prepared to revisit that current assessment, but for now, I'm happy with it. 

Does that mean I'm voting for (c)?:unsure:

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1 hour ago, Mid said:

my answer as Master of said large ship .

Mid, sorry, I'm obtuse.  

Which part of

"taking into account his earlier request for a LARGE ship to alter course to allow him to cross safely"

are you responding "nope" to?

Happy to discuss, but I don't know what we would be discussing ...

Is it "nope, that doesn't make him a dick"; or

"Nope, I am the master of said large ship and I don't agree to alter course"; or

?

 

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Whats the german for Schadenfreude again?

I know it's wrong.  Don't get me wrong, I like Borris, he has brought the vendee to a new market, and produced hours of entertaining footage, and been a great competitor.

But it's just always funny seeing a German trying to understand how other nations interpret the irpcs.

To a german, shall means will.  To a brit, shall means probably should.  To the french, it means maybe? To a med sailor, there are rules now? but I was here first!

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Ring up & ask. If they say no or don’t answer then so be it. Ever thought the guys on the bridge might be following the race & this might have been the highlight of their day. Plenty of pro mariners are sailors. 

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18 minutes ago, SCANAS said:

Ring up & ask. If they say no or don’t answer then so be it. Ever thought the guys on the bridge might be following the race & this might have been the highlight of their day. Plenty of pro mariners are sailors. 

And I would hope and expect that a pro mariner would appreciate and respect the guys and girls blasting around the world in their little carbon shells, under sail (especially if the sailing boat is overtaking!!).

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3 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

And I would hope and expect that a pro mariner would appreciate and respect the guys and girls blasting around the world in their little carbon shells, under sail (especially if the sailing boat is overtaking!!).

Respect works both ways. Perhaps if you are used to being able to raise millions of $$ and pursue a sport fulltime, constantly receiving adoration and accolades...then just perhaps you become a bit arrogant and believe it is "your right" to order around a supermax because you are certain that you are richtig.  Then you slam into a fishing vessel...

Here lies the body of Michael O'Day.
He died defending his right of way.
He was right, dead right, as he sailed along,
But he's just as dead as if he were wrong.
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2 hours ago, Recidivist said:

Based on Boris' video, where he says he used ALL previous encounters to prove that his alarm systems were working, I tend to the view that he had done all that was reasonably possible in the way of maintaining a watch (it being a human requirement to sleep sometimes).  If further information comes to light, I would be prepared to revisit that current assessment, but for now, I'm happy with it.

COLREGS Rule 5 Look-out: "Every vessel shall at all times maintain a proper look-out by sight and hearing as well as by all available means appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions so as to make a full appraisal of the situation and of the risk of collision."

I don't see anything there which says that one vessel's decision to sail without enough crew to maintain a proper lookout at all times somehow creates an obligation on other vessels

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3 hours ago, Recidivist said:
3 hours ago, chuso007 said:

Would you be sailing without AIS too?  Because Hermann was asleep with his AIS alarm on and it didn't detect the fishing boat.

Judgemental is not the word I would use to describe what I'd be if I'd crash into you then.

For all that (and I agree), Boris has been VERY shaken by the collision - the sheer fright of waking from the crash - the realisation of what has happened - the immediate fear for his boat, are we sinking?  What damage has been done?  How can I sort this?  Can I continue to the finish? 

A world class, promising and up and coming sailor has just learnt the most important lesson on his road to future success and greatness - humility!  

Boris will be back - and much tougher and smarter for this experience, horrible as it has been.  At least no-one died.

Ah well, that makes it all OK

"He learned his lesson."

"At least no one died."

AIS is not a substitute for an actual lookout and an actual watch keeper. As TL says above, they don't get a special dispensation. Most race organizers address the issue of racers interfering with other traffic in the Sailing Instr, does the Vendee? One of the things I love about sailing is that results matter, not excuses

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There is also, according  to COLREGs, the basic responsibility of both vessels on a collision course to avoid collision.  It is just plain silly that man has created an iteration of a sport such that when well offshore a lone sailor, solely for the sake of winning a competition, can order a supermax ship to take evasive action. And this iteration of sport also puts sailing vessels in a state of insufficient lookout every night. That just doesn't pass the common-sense test (or the good sportsmanship test).

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Israel Hands said:

There is also, according  to COLREGs, the basic responsibility of both vessels on a collision course to avoid collision.  It is just plain silly that man has created an iteration of a sport such that when well offshore a lone sailor, solely for the sake of winning a competition, can order a supermax ship to take evasive action. And this iteration of sport also puts sailing vessels in a state of insufficient lookout every night. That just doesn't pass the common-sense test (or the good sportsmanship test).

 

 

There is indeed nothing sensible about the Vendee at all.  Fails every H&S test going.  This one time, one of the racers woke up with half a boat.  Every Vendee survivor is a hero, regardless of finishing position.  Proof of great seamanship in a Vendee is the ability to re-use the boat afterwards.  Can't wait for the next one.

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13 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

AIS is not a substitute for an actual lookout and an actual watch keeper.

Ok, let's ban singlehanded ocean racing then. 

We are heading to a society of brainless zombies anyway...

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Trouble is, when singlehanded sailors were yachting around in fragile 5 knot wooden boats, and the only person who could die in a collision was the sailor, then, you know, fair enough. But hurtling around at 25knots plus is another game of soldiers entirely. I wonder what the fishing boat has to say about this collision?

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19 hours ago, Israel Hands said:

So let's hope he was more courteous in his request than he suggested in the interview. Since in a way he was representing all ocean sailors.  (But I imagine he was.)

As quoted

‘Get out of my way, I’m a sailboat. I have right of way!’ Ha!,” he said, recalling the event.

It’s possible the exchange was in German and lost something in translation but it does not sound like it.

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The inability of singlehanders to keep a proper lookout 24/7 has seemingly always been similar to Lord Nelson putting his telescope to the ‘wrong’ eye.  Ie. ‘I don’t see a problem...”

However, please explain the legality of something like the new autonomous sail drone of 70 some feet in size.  If using electronic sensors ‘whenever possible’ is adequate, then surely the Vendée Globe sailors should be legal, n’est pas?  I also see articles from time to time about making large ships autonomous in the future...  It’s coming, yet likely the reason they’ve not been implemented yet are indeed the ‘current’ requirement for a lookout at all times.  Sail Drone is already pushing the boundaries.

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3 hours ago, Recidivist said:

For all that (and I agree), Boris has been VERY shaken by the collision - the sheer fright of waking from the crash - the realisation of what has happened - the immediate fear for his boat, are we sinking?  What damage has been done?  How can I sort this?  Can I continue to the finish? 

A world class, promising and up and coming sailor has just learnt the most important lesson on his road to future success and greatness - humility!  

Boris will be back - and much tougher and smarter for this experience, horrible as it has been.  At least no-one died.

I think your first and third paragraph likely.

What evidence do you have to support your second. I see no signs of humility.

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13 minutes ago, chuso007 said:
28 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

AIS is not a substitute for an actual lookout and an actual watch keeper.

Ok, let's ban singlehanded ocean racing then. 

We are heading to a society of brainless zombies anyway...

I don't advocate banning it. Setting it up from base-line so that the sailors must be at least as responsible as any other skipper would be a very good idea, though. I'm also not in favor of banning SailDrone either, just make really sure that the people responsible for it, are held responsible.

No singlehand racing = brainless zombies? Hmmmmmm :huh:

In the first incident discussed here, it seems to me that Boris was in the right although doing something that most of us would never consider. In the second, I personally think that he's so much in the wrong that I'm a little amazed anybody would defend him on it. No AIS, ok then just crash into that fucker.

FB- Doug

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24 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

I don't advocate banning it. Setting it up from base-line so that the sailors must be at least as responsible as any other skipper would be a very good idea, though.

^ That.

When a human game has features that don't make common sense, then the answer is simple: change the rules of the game.

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A few years back, the Irish authorities issued a Marine Notice which basically said that COLREGs rule 5 applies to everybody , including solo sailors.    That killed the few single-handed long-distance races in Irish waters.

I dislike nanny-state laws such as mandatory seatbelts ... but i reckon there is a stronger case for laws which prevent people doing harm to others.  Sailing through coastal waters without permanent lookout seems pretty anti-social to me, so I can't object to that one.

The Vendée Globe is a harder case.  Most of the route is in waters where the chances of collision are low, but some of it is coastal. 

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Can't believe the posters here criticizing Boris. He had set up three alarms (radar, AIS, and OSCAR) and took a nap. All three failed (AIS at least because the fishing ship had it turned off), and that needs investigation, but it is very hard to blame Boris. If you are going to require singl- handed racers to maintain a visual lookout at all times 24/7 for 80 days, then no Vendee Globe.

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6 minutes ago, TheDragon said:

If you are going to require singl- handed racers to maintain a visual lookout at all times 24/7 for 80 days, then no Vendee Globe.

Which part of COLREGS Rule 5 exempts the Vendée Globe?

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4 minutes ago, TheDragon said:

Can't believe the posters here criticizing Boris. He had set up three alarms (radar, AIS, and OSCAR) and took a nap. All three failed (AIS at least because the fishing ship had it turned off), and that needs investigation, but it is very hard to blame Boris. If you are going to require singl- handed racers to maintain a visual lookout at all times 24/7 for 80 days, then no Vendee Globe.

Whether the fish boat's AIS was on or not is not the issue. Boris' AIS had not been working for more than a month. Radar, on both vessels was not being used properly, or not monitored. Fishermen working the deck, nets, long lines, were not paying attention, Boris asleep. Middle of the night...Alarms are problematic, ask Alex Thompson about that. 

Vendee competitors ramming fish boats has been common. Many races disrupted, mostly the first night following the start. 

Plenty of blame to both the fish boat, and Boris for this incident. 

I understand the fish boat captain was joking about the crash.

Boris might have scratched his anchor.

Rubbin' is racin'. Get over it. 

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Okay, radar alarm should have worked.

so I think he was being as careful as one can be while sailing really fast while asleep below decks.  
which nevertheless fails the Rule 5 requirements, big-time.  That’s no big secret, all singhanders can’t help it.  Everyone in the regatta knows this, and keep fingers crossed.  My concern is with Boris, but more so with the vessels around them, who don’t know that boat is “blind”, but without a “white cane” to tip them off?
Suppose the fishing vessel had someone out on deck or out on tne rig, who got hit?  
 

Singlehanders willingly accept that risk.  But other souls and vessels shouldn’t have to.

Mini-rant over...

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13 minutes ago, jhc said:

Whether the fish boat's AIS was on or not is not the issue. Boris' AIS had not been working for more than a month.

"Monday 4th January. After 56 days of racing, Boris Herrmann (Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco) is set to round Cape Horn for the fifth time in his career, but first time solo. The German skipper should pass this legendary point during Monday to Tuesday night.

“I think only Jean Le Cam has done it more,” says Boris. “I can’t wait to get there! We are going to run into each other so will follow each other on the AIS… A bit like a battle of the gybes."

Seems to me he had working AIS less than month ago.

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3 minutes ago, Upp3 said:

"Monday 4th January. After 56 days of racing, Boris Herrmann (Seaexplorer-Yacht Club de Monaco) is set to round Cape Horn for the fifth time in his career, but first time solo. The German skipper should pass this legendary point during Monday to Tuesday night.

“I think only Jean Le Cam has done it more,” says Boris. “I can’t wait to get there! We are going to run into each other so will follow each other on the AIS… A bit like a battle of the gybes."

Seems to me he had working AIS less than month ago.

I belive JLC was complaining he could not see Boris' AIS. 

Back in the day there was a tool, Radar detector. Would give a alarm, and bearing, to any operating radar signal. Was very popular with single handers. Much like a VHF RDF, used the other vessels signal to identify a potential collision threat. Relied on the other vessel having it's radar on transmit, but better than nothing. Most ships continue to transmit their radar, whether they are monitoring or not. 

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1 hour ago, Israel Hands said:

^ That.

When a human game has features that don't make common sense, then the answer is simple: change the rules of the game.

Or choose not to participate...

I am both awestruck by the skill and tenacity of successful single handed distance racers AND concerned they think it acceptable that they impose risks on others so they can pursue their self interest.

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47 minutes ago, TheDragon said:

Can't believe the posters here criticizing Boris. He had set up three alarms (radar, AIS, and OSCAR) and took a nap. All three failed (AIS at least because the fishing ship had it turned off), and that needs investigation, but it is very hard to blame Boris. If you are going to require singl- handed racers to maintain a visual lookout at all times 24/7 for 80 days, then no Vendee Globe.

Well if a society is willing to impose seatbelts on drivers...preventing a sailing race that can not observe COLREGS does not seem a stretch

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16 minutes ago, KC375 said:

Well if a society is willing to impose seatbelts on drivers...preventing a sailing race that can not observe COLREGS does not seem a stretch

It’s up to the French, not us, and they have a much more permissive view on the rules. 

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14 minutes ago, KC375 said:

Well if a society is willing to impose seatbelts on drivers...preventing a sailing race that can not observe COLREGS does not seem a stretch

Whoa, nobody has died, due to this single handed yacht/commercial vessel collision. Poor analogy alert!

Boris, and other single handers are willing to take the risk involved. In this incident the fish boat guys laughed it off. 

Teaching moments, incremental change, appropriate action. 

I don't think anyone wants this kind of activity to cease.

 

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I don't want to sound like my hair's on fire here.  Collisions are very rare (or never so far?? I don't know), and way out at sea, whatever you hit will be some Leviathan such as the HANNAH OLDENDORFF, and will probably get only scratched paint (though these structurally kind of delicate racers, might get wiped out, but that risk they assume when they head out. . 

But closer to shore, there are more miscellaneous vessels (and tows), and the risk is higher for the unsuspecting Fishing vessel or tug and tow, or indeed another pleasure vessel or who knows what, who might not be able to avoid this unseeing 23-knot seagoing hot rod, and could conceivably get damaged, or sunk (unlikely), or someone hurt or thrown overboard.  

Maybe the race organizers could do more real-time traffic guidance for their racers, in coastal waters?  Or (God forbid) somehow put a second person on so you can do a two-watch system and actually comply with Rule 5.  

 

This is mostly thinking out loud.  Do the organizers see this as a deal-breaker?  Maybe it won't be a problem and no one will get injured or wind up dead.

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Short answer - I am not required to have AIS or radar of any kind. If I am out fishing or sailing and I get run into by someone who was sleeping, I am going to be very pissed off to put it mildly. Would you be happy dodging sleeping pilots next time you go flying or dodging Teslas with sleeping drivers next time you drive to the 7-11?

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The same risks at sea exist whether racing, fishing, pleasure boating, swimming. The risk is known to people who go to sea,

I'm not adverse to racing organizers being part of the equation, in mitigating risk. But unlike closed course racing, the sea is an open environment. My personal experiences at sea have informed me, as to just what risks are involved, even at a very young age. When I go to sea, I accept those risks. Even the risk of a collision with  a vessel with no manned watch.

 

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22 minutes ago, jhc said:

When I go to sea, I accept those risks. Even the risk of a collision with  a vessel with no manned watch.

That's very nice for you. But many people who go to sea round the world don't have much of a choice. There's already been a fatality caused by a race boat travelling at high speed. There is nothing theoretical about this.

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51 minutes ago, nolatom said:

Maybe the race organizers could do more real-time traffic guidance for their racers, in coastal waters?  Or (God forbid) somehow put a second person on so you can do a two-watch system and actually comply with Rule 5.  

That's an interesting thought. Would a two-handed Vendée Globe be much less compelling to follow?

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14 minutes ago, JimC said:
18 minutes ago, jhc said:

When I go to sea, I accept those risks. Even the risk of a collision with  a vessel with no manned watch.

That's very nice for you. But many people who go to sea round the world don't have much of a choice. There's already been a fatality caused by a race boat. travelling at high speed. There is nothing theoretical about this.

Boldly saying "I accept those risks" is a very different thing from -imposing- that risk on others, unasked, especially a bunch of working fisherman who are already miserable enough trying to make a living.

I think it's a wonderful way to celebrate, setting off explosions and firing an AK-47 in the air. Wedding? Birthday? Who gives a fuck, let 'er rip! Everyone should be willing to accept the risks of my having a big wild party!

Right?

3 hours ago, Upp3 said:
3 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

it seems to me that Boris was in the right although doing something that most of us would never consider

Sailing around the world alone in foiling Imoca?

I personally wouldn't want to do it -alone- but it's an awesome challenge. Doublehanded?

Anyway, I was talking about making a large freighter divert their course so I wouldn't have to. I mostly sail smaller boats inshore but often in heavily trafficked waters such as the lower Chesapeake or New York approaches. I've never once requested a commercial vessel to avoid me, even though technically I may be privileged to do so.

Many coastal races have provisions in the Sailing Instructions that if a commercial vessel has to take avoiding action of your vessel, you are DSQ right then automatically. That could probably be challenged. It has certainly led to protests including one that I was on the Protest Committee for, a bunch of J-24s that got 5 horn blasts from a tow & barge. They all stood in a circle pointing at each other, "Wasn't me, it was him" so we DSQ'd them all. They were not happy.

Boris was technically in the right, and that may be the standard for ocean racers. By the standards I'm familiar with, it's a dick move. Hitting a fishing boat at night while you sleep? Aren't ALL vessels required to avoid collision?

- DSK

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2 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

Anyway, I was talking about making a large freighter divert their course so I wouldn't have to. I mostly sail smaller boats inshore but often in heavily trafficked waters such as the lower Chesapeake or New York approaches. I've never once requested a commercial vessel to avoid me, even though technically I may be privileged to do so.

Reminds me of this, check from 4:10 :

 

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1 hour ago, jhc said:

The same risks at sea exist whether racing, fishing, pleasure boating, swimming. The risk is known to people who go to sea,

I'm not adverse to racing organizers being part of the equation, in mitigating risk. But unlike closed course racing, the sea is an open environment. My personal experiences at sea have informed me, as to just what risks are involved, even at a very young age. When I go to sea, I accept those risks. Even the risk of a collision with  a vessel with no manned watch.

 

Well actually the COLEREGs are designed to reduce the risks at sea. Is it OK for a group to not follow the COLEREGs because they are inconsistent with the activity they have freely chosen to pursue?

(For what it is worth – the Vende Globe participants are not top of my list for enforcing COLEREGs...the list is pretty long)

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2 hours ago, JimC said:

That's very nice for you. But many people who go to sea round the world don't have much of a choice. There's already been a fatality caused by a race boat travelling at high speed. There is nothing theoretical about this.

The incident you refer to was, by the way, a fully crewed yacht, and a fishing boat. Does not relate to your argument regarding banning single handed racing.

Your own theory about single handed racing being more dangerous than fully crewed doesn't seem to stand up using that argument.

Also, I don't have a choice either. I accept that.

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2 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

I think it's a wonderful way to celebrate, setting off explosions and firing an AK-47 in the air. Wedding? Birthday? Who gives a fuck, let 'er rip! Everyone should be willing to accept the risks of my having a big wild party!

Right?

I'm not the guy who shoots guns in the air. I'm the guy who understands that is a risk, and does my best to stay safe, and aware. Legislation won't stop idiots from being idiots.

But then I don't think it's a wonderful way to celebrate. "setting off explosions and firing an AK-47 in the air".

Whatever floats your boat. 

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12 hours ago, maxstaylock said:

To a german, shall means will.  To a brit, shall means probably should.  To the french, it means maybe? To a med sailor, there are rules now? but I was here first!

This kind of reminds me of a quote years ago in a magazine about driving in Europe: "All of Europe is a road race-The Germans drive the fastest, the French have the most flair, the English have the most technique and the Italians always get there first."

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I've called up many an ocean going freighter or tanker to ADVISE them of my position. If I establish communication usually I'll say "hey I'm a sailboat about 5 miles off your port beam. My AIS is saying I'll have a CPA of ~ 1/2 mile in about 15 minutes. Do you mind altering course a bit to starboard (or port) to allow us to safely pass?" 

Never an issue; they're happy to avoid any big drama.

It's harder to judge crossings for the freighter if you're a sailboat closing at 20 knots. Lot less time for reaction and yes, a bigger course adjustment might be required.

Doesn't matter if the freighter is "working". COLREGs apply to all.

Boris hitting a fishing boat? Not cool. Might have scratched their paint.

But frankly I hate fishing boats. They do not obey the COLREGs, do not show the correct lights, adjust course in a random fashion, try to get too close just because they curious who the hell else is out here on some black night, set unlit kilometer long nets that tangle my rudder or daggerboards etc etc.

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I do something similar with the ferry traffic in Puget Sound if I'm on or nearly on a collision course. I'll hail them by name, advise them of who I am, let them know we're heading for each other, and ask if they need me to divert. Nine times out of ten, they'll tell me to hold course and speed and they'll move out of the way. That 10th time is usually when they're hemmed in (unbeknownst to me) and they're grateful that I've offered to move. 

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20 hours ago, Recidivist said:

"Nope, I am the master of said large ship and I don't agree to alter course";

this .

basically it's  ridiculous  to even put yourself in the position where you need to ask .

 

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Three things:

In my experience these kind of vessels have just one person on the bridge pushing a 'dead man alarm' every 15mins or so, but otherwise mostly just sitting in a comfy chair and relying on radar and AIS, maybe even watching a movie (probably not on an Oldendorff vessel, they are a rather high quality operator). Do not expect anyone is keeping a proper lookout especially out on the ocean.

The vessel is most likely running on autopilot. Altering the course requires turning a small wheel with one of your fingers while staying put in the chair. However, depending on the size of the ship and the waters, they might have to stay on course, even if it looks like there is a lot of room. 10+ meters of draft and a very large and slow moving chunk of steel makes a difference. Maybe they are already avoiding another large vessel that you haven't even seen on your sailboat. The crew are also under a lot of pressure to run their voyages efficiently to save fuel.

Also be aware that even when they are master mariners, a lot of crew especially from developing countries will have never set foot on a small sailboat, so do not really know how it operates, what the limitations are. I remember having a conversation with a ferry captain who said he was surprised that boats sometimes suddenly change direction by around 90 degrees (tacking upwind). He didn't know why they did it and was not able to anticipate these moves.

My suggestion is to stay out of the way of commercial traffic irrespective of any rights you may have. If there is a problem, the sailing vessel will loose.

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14 minutes ago, nogetwe said:

Three things:

In my experience these kind of vessels have just one person on the bridge pushing a 'dead man alarm' every 15mins or so, but otherwise mostly just sitting in a comfy chair and relying on radar and AIS, maybe even watching a movie (probably not on an Oldendorff vessel, they are a rather high quality operator). Do not expect anyone is keeping a proper lookout especially out on the ocean.

The vessel is most likely running on autopilot. Altering the course requires turning a small wheel with one of your fingers while staying put in the chair. However, depending on the size of the ship and the waters, they might have to stay on course, even if it looks like there is a lot of room. 10+ meters of draft and a very large and slow moving chunk of steel makes a difference. Maybe they are already avoiding another large vessel that you haven't even seen on your sailboat. The crew are also under a lot of pressure to run their voyages efficiently to save fuel.

Also be aware that even when they are master mariners, a lot of crew especially from developing countries will have never set foot on a small sailboat, so do not really know how it operates, what the limitations are. I remember having a conversation with a ferry captain who said he was surprised that boats sometimes suddenly change direction by around 90 degrees (tacking upwind). He didn't know why they did it and was not able to anticipate these moves.

My suggestion is to stay out of the way of commercial traffic irrespective of any rights you may have. If there is a problem, the sailing vessel will loose.

Thanks Captain Obvious!! 

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I may be overly generous, but I am assuming that Boris knows all this.  I picture a scenario (and I could be quite wrong) that goes along the following lines:

BH: "Hannah Oldendorf, this is the small sailing vessel Malizia, approximately 7 miles on your port quarter - I calculate we will come into close quarters if we both continue on the same course.  I am a solo sailor, in a round the world yacht race, and it will be difficult and costly to my speed for me to alter course - would you mind altering course 30 degrees to starboard to allow me to pass safely?"

HO: "I am reluctant to do so because of my size"

BH: "I say again, I am under sail, which gives me right of way over a power driven vessel - please alter course to allow me to pass safely"

HO: "Very well, I am altering course to starboard 30 degrees. Because of my size, it will take some time before you notice any variation"

BH: "Thank you Captain.  Malizia standing by on CH16."

I think such a scenario would be entirely proper. 

I doubt that the conversation actually went as he picturesquely described on the video - "get out of my way" (that WOULD be inappropriate).

 

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45 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

I doubt that the conversation actually went as he picturesquely described on the video - "get out of my way" (that WOULD be inappropriate).

Most people describe themselves as being less asshole than they actually are.

So when the self-description is a boastful form of high-grade asshole, I am not inclined to give them a discount.

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