Sea-Fever blog


Sad Day: Loss of the HMS Bounty and two of her professional mariners by Peter A. Mello

Early this morning news broke that the HMS Bounty was caught in Hurricane Sandy on her trip south and foundered in heavy weather. Fourteen of her 16 crew members were able to make it into life rafts and were ultimately rescued by the US Coast Guard. Here is an incredible video of this operation.

This is a sobering reminder of the incredible dangers of going to sea. There have been so many tragic losses of tall ships and sail training professionals over the past decade and it’s difficult to process a loss like this. Not enough is known about what transpired about the Bounty in her final moments but two experienced captains have weighed in wondering why the ship ever took to sea in advance of a storm like Sandy. Local captain baffled by HMS Bounty accident and Picton Castle captain questions Bounty being at sea during storm.

So our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of Claudene Christian who died today and Captain Robin Walbridge who is still missing as I write this post.

Finally, the sad news is somewhat offset by the good news that we still have real life heroes today. US Coast rescue swimmers risk it all, accomplishing incomprehensible feats under mind-boggling conditions.  While everyone else is advised to stay out of harms way, they are willing to jump into it save lives. They are true heroes and we can’t thank them enough for what they do, all in a days work.

 



Interview with Tall Ship Concordia Captain Bill Curry on Sinking by Peter A. Mello
February 25, 2010, 8:51 pm
Filed under: maritime | Tags: , , , , ,

Here is the first interview I have been able to locate with tall ship Concordia’s Captain Bill Curry regarding the sinking. (via CBC Radio – Feb. 24, 2010)


It’s always good to hear directly from the person in charge.



Concordia Timeline: From Abandon Ship to Rescue by Peter A. Mello
February 21, 2010, 9:40 pm
Filed under: life, maritime, sail training, tall ships | Tags: ,

The Calgary Herald published a timeline of events from the Concordia casualty to rescue.

Wednesday, Feb. 17

2:30 p.m. - A distress signal goes out from the Concordia

9:00 p.m. – Brazilian navy receives alert.  Navy officials spend 18 hours confirming what ship sent the signal, whose flag it was under. Confirms location, attempts radio contact with the Concordia. Contacts the school — is informed the last contact with the ship did not indicate any problem.

Thursday, Feb. 18

2:30 p.m. - Brazilian navy asks air force to do a flyover of the area and alerts merchant ships in the region. Stormy seas prevail.

5:00  p.m. – Brazilian air force spots lifeboats.

9:00 p.m. - Merchant ships Crystal Pioneer and Hokuetsu Delight told to go to location. Stormy seas, bad weather continue.

Friday, Feb. 19

4:00 a.m. - Crystal Pioneer spots lifeboats — due to darkness and high seas, waits to pluck the survivors to safety.

7:00 a.m. – The relieved passengers start boarding the Crystal Pioneer and Hokuetsu Delight.

9:00 a.m. - Last lifeboat located, passengers transferred to Hokuetsu Delight.

Saturday . Feb. 20 - All 64 students, teachers and crew arrive safely in Rio de Janeiro

Sources: Nigel McCarthy and The Brazilian Navy



High School Tall Ship Concordia Sinks Off Brazil by Peter A. Mello
February 19, 2010, 12:13 pm
Filed under: Education, Experience, life, sail training, tall ships | Tags: , , ,

I will continue to update this post with articles about the sinking of the Concordia. There’s a lot of duplicate content out there so I’ll do my best to curate the best, most relevant. While I am a huge fan of the Class Afloat program you may see posts with different opinions since I think examining this incident from different perspectives can be valuable and instructive. Thanks for visiting and please feel free to leave your thoughts in a comment below.

Why I created this long post about Concordia sinking Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 24, 2010

Update March 24, 2010

Student Survival Story from High School Tall Ship Concordia Sinking (video) Sea-Fever blog – March 24, 2010

Update March 15, 2010

Sinking of ship and skiing out of bounds not similar Calgary Herald March 15. 2010

Class Afloat plans to sail again Calgary Herald March 12, 2010

Safety board interviews Concordia captain, officers The Chronicle Herald March 12, 2010

Students granted free use of town recreation facilities SouthshoreNow March 8, 2010

GME EPIRB credited for saving all 64 in schoolship sinking SailWorld.com March 8, 2010

Survivor talks of shipwreck experience Battle Creek Enquirer March 4, 2010

Canadian TSB Investigates The Sinking Of Concordia Off The Coast Of Brazil The Gov Monitor March 3, 2010

Bearspaw student reflects on shipwreck experience Cochrane Eagle March 3, 2010

Crew waited 40 hours for rescue: Concordia officer Toronto Sun – March 3, 2010

Tall ship passed stability testing, owners say Globe and Mail March 2, 2010

Class Afloat Sails On Southshore Now – March 1, 2010

BC Man Helped Others Off Sinking Ship WoodTV8 – Feb. 28, 2010

Buoyed by Coverage Calgary Herald – Feb. 28, 2010

Update Feb. 27, 2010 11:00 EST

Young heroes surfaced in high seas ordeal – Emergency training aboard tall ship helped produce maritime miracle Calgary Herald – Feb. 27, 2010

Ship Sinks, West Michigan Man Helps Passengers Evacuate FOX17 – Feb 26, 2010

Update Feb. 26, 2010 8:00 PM EST

Class Afloat to celebrate safe return – Reception planned to reunite students, staff who survived sinking of SV Concordia Chronicle Herald – Feb. 26, 2010

Safety, preparation go together EMC South Ottawa – Feb. 26, 2010 *must read!

Back on land, but not for good TVNZ – Feb. 26, 2010

Local teenager’s sailing trip abroad ends in open water NC Advertiser – Feb. 26, 2010

Sailing days over, says wreck survivor CBCNews – Feb. 26, 2010

Update Feb. 25, 2010 10:00 PM EST

Interview with Tall Ship Concordia Captain Bill Curry on Sinking Sea-Fever blog Feb. 25, 2010


Update Feb. 25, 2010 noon EST

Whitehorse girl home from tall-ship ordeal CBCNews Feb. 25, 2010

How to be prepared when disaster strikes The Globe and Mail – Feb. 25, 2010

Tall ship crew well-prepared for emergency, says survivor from Gatineau Ottawa Citizen – Feb. 25, 2010

The Sailing Yacht Concordia (Tall ship) due to call at Tristan da Cunha in March sinks off Brazil The Tristan Times (Brazil) Feb. 25, 2010

Tall ship sinking probe focuses on response time TheStar.com – Feb. 24, 2010

Cowichan Bay student at home after shipwreck off Brazil Times Colonist – Feb. 24, 2010

Agency investigating sinking of Concordia to interview ship’s captain this week MetroNews Vancouver – Feb. 24, 2010

Captain of sunken ship to face questions The Edmonton Sun – Feb. 24. 2010

Update Feb. 24, 2010 noon EST

Local native has ties to sunken SV Concordia Standard Freeholder Feb. 24, 2010

Local teen survived tall ship disaster Northumberland Today – Feb. 24. 2010

Class Afloat Ponders the Future The Chronicle Herald – Feb. 24, 2010

Survivors tell tales of 40-hour ordeal at sea The Windsor Star – Feb. 21 2010

NZ student on way home after boat capsized Otago Daily Times – Feb. 24, 2010

West Van teen survives 38-hour life raft ordeal North Shore News – Feb. 24, 2010

Class Afloat prof recounts shipwreck MetroNews.ca – Feb. 23, 2010

Grandmother relieved after hearing from granddaughter who was aboard SV Concordia The News (Pictou) Feb. 23, 2010

Incident Photo of The Week – Tall Ship Capsizes, Students Rescued At Sea gCaptain – Feb. 23, 2010

Update Feb. 23, 2010 11:00 PM EST

Brazilian navy faults Canadian ship for sinking The Montreal Gazette – Feb. 23, 2010

Could the Brig Prince William Replace the Barkentine Concordia Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 23, 2010

The Story Behind the Story Lloyd’s List Feb. 24, 2010

Two MOL-owned Woodchip Carriers Rescue Shipwrecked Students PRLog – Feb. 23, 2010

Probe to shed light on sinking of S.V. Concordia The Globe and Mail Feb. 23, 2010

Update Feb.23, 2010 6:00 PM EST

Lost-at-sea student describes 41 hours on life raft Peace Arch News – Feb. 23, 2010

Trenton teacher survives ship sinking Trentonian – Feb.23, 2010

N.S. teacher stays calm on rough seas – The Chronicle Herald – Feb. 22, 2010

Emotional bonds forged during 40 hours adrift at sea Calgary Herald – Feb. 23, 2010

Unanswered questions about the sinking Globe and Mail – Feb. 23, 2010

Update Feb. 23, 2010 10:00 AM EST

Concordia Liferafts via AMVER blog courtesy of Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd

Concordia Rescue Photos via AMVER Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 23, 2010

Exclusive photos of the Concordia rescue – AMVER blog – Feb. 23, 2010

Dead calm to screaming winds – South Atlantic weather changes in seconds, says Brazilian sailor The Chronicle Herald Feb. 23, 2010

‘I didn’t think we would be rescued’: British teenager reveals how she spent two days in a lifeboat in middle of Atlantic after tall ship capsized – DailyMail – Feb. 23, 2010

Tall Ship Teens Saved After Two Days In Ocean SkyNews – Feb. 23, 2010

Concordia’s Voyage and Sinking (Graphic from The Globe and Mail) Sea-Fever blog Feb. 23, 2010

Raising children entails exposing them to risk – Vancouver Sun Feb. 23, 2010

Update Feb. 22, 2010 10:00 PM EST

First-hand account of the sinking of the Concordia Globe and Mail Feb. 22, 2010

Former Acadia prof recounts sinking of SV Concordia The Chronicle Herald – Feb. 22, 2010

Calgary teen watched ship go down CBCNews – Feb. 22, 2010

Two rainy nights singing Disney: How Class Afloat survived at sea National Post – Feb. 22, 2010

Burlington teen recounts shipwreck ordeal TheStar.com – Feb. 22, 2010

Islander safe after ship sinks off Brazil The Guardian – Feb. 22, 2010

Teen home after 41 hours on a life raft Peace Arch News – Feb. 22, 2010

Rescued teens reunited with families at Pearson (+video) TheStar.com – Feb. 22, 2010

Concordia, AMVER, EPIRBs and At Sea Rescues Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 22, 2010

more about “Students Survive Two Days at Sea – CB…”, posted with vodpod

Update Feb. 22, 2010 Noon EST

Interview with Ben Strong of the United States AMVER unit regarding epirbs and at sea rescues.


AMVER (Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System) website | blog | Twitter | iPhone App

Update Feb. 22, 2010 9:00 AM EST

School awaits investigation into ship sinking CBCNews Feb. 22, 2010

Students who survived ship sinking arrive back home CTVEdmonton Feb. 22, 2010

Parents of rescued students say full tale of ordeal yet to be told Calgary Herald – Feb. 22, 2010

Students who survived ship sinking arrive at Pearson TheStar.com – Feb. 22, 2010

Rescue light in sky ‘best feeling in world’ for shipwrecked group Vancouver Sun – Feb. 22, 2010

British teenager saved after drifting for two days in Atlantic on a lifeboat London Evening Standard – Feb. 22, 2010

Update Feb. 21, 2010 10:00 PM EST

Message from Class Afloat About Returning Concordia Students – Feb. 21, 2010

Class Afloat program classes to continue Calgary Sun – Feb. 21. 2010

Concordia Timeline: From Abandon Ship to RescueSea-Fever blog via Calgary Herald – Feb. 21. 2010

Shipwrecked teens to reunite with families in Toronto – Toronto Sun – Feb. 21, 2010

Update Feb. 21, 2010 8:00 PM EST

Survivor tells sister of ship ordeal The National – Feb. 21, 2010

Uncertainty over whether sea school program will continue after ‘miracle at sea’ Calgary Herald - Feb. 21, 2010

High school on the open seas – Globe and Mail – Feb. 21, 2010

Update Feb. 21, 2010 3:00 PM EST

Brazil defends its search efforts in shipwreck - The Washington Post – Feb. 21, 2010

Shipwrecked students drifted in rafts for 24 hours – News3 New Zealand – Feb. 21, 2010

Survivors of Canadian ship sinking prepare for return home from Brazil The Canadian Press – Feb. 21, 2010

Update Feb. 21, 2010 12:00 EST

Survival Stories: Pride of Baltimore Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 21, 2010

Update Feb. 21, 2010 9:00 AM EST

Concordia, sailing ships and microbursts Sea-Fever blog – Feb. 21, 2010

Domino effect of bad luck led to sinking The Globe and Mail Feb. 21, 2010

Survivors tell tales of 40-hour ordeal at sea – Vancouver Sun – Feb. 21, 2010

Ship’s survivors recall scramble to safety The Globe and Mail – Feb. 21, 2010

Class Afloat attracted only top students Calgary Herald – Feb. 20, 2010

Update Feb. 20, 2010 10:00 PM EST

Shipwrecked Students Feared Remote Death at Sea New York Times Feb. 20, 2010

64 People from Shipwrecked Canadian Sailboat Concordia Arrived Safe in Rio Latin American Herald Tribune Feb. 20, 2010

Update Feb. 20, 2010 8:00 PM EST

“It was like the Titanic” Passengers drifted for 30 hours before rescue TheStar.com Feb. 20, 2010

Update Feb. 20, 2010 5:30 PM EST

We’ve made it! British teenagers survive 40-hour ordeal after ship is sunk by towering waves Mail Online Feb. 20, 2010

Update Feb. 20, 2010 1:00 PM EST

Ship sinking was like the Titanic, student tells dad The Star.com Feb. 20, 2010

Survivors say Canadian tall ship sank in minutes (video/audio)  CTV Edmonton – Feb. 20, 2010

Captain of floating university: Sudden ‘microburst’ knocked ship onto side off Brazilian coast The Canadian Press – Feb. 20, 2010

Scorza AFP Getty images

Rescued Canadians dock in Rio – The Globe and Mail – Feb. 20, 2010

Rescued students arrive in Rio - CBC News – Feb. 20, 2010

Training helped save students as Canadian ship sank: teacher The Star.com – Feb. 20, 2010

‘Absolute nightmare’ ends well for students Edmonton Journal – Feb. 20, 2010

Canadian agency won’t play big role in probe The Chronicle Herald – Feb 20, 2010

Updated  Feb. 19, 2010 – 11:00 PM EST

Students safe after capsizing of N.S.-based ship CBC – Feb. 19, 2010

Canadian School Ship Sinks Off Brazil; All Rescued NPR – Feb. 19, 2010

Updated Feb. 19, 2010 – 10:00 PM EST There is still so little information available about what happened but the following story at least let’s us know that some communication has occurred with the captains of both the Concordia and the rescuing ship and that there are no serious injuries. The rest at this point is all speculation and conjecture. One thing that we do know for sure is that going to sea has always been and will always be fraught with risk and that’s one of the reasons why the experience can be so powerful.

Nova Scotia school ship sinks off Brazil; all safe but parents want answers The Canadian Press – Feb. 19, 2010

——————————————-

Very sad news today about the sinking of the high school tall ship Concordia sinking off the coast of Brazil in heavy weather. Thankfully all students and crew were rescued.

This story is still developing so not a lot of details are available; however, here are a few news reports.

Students rescued from sinking ship – CBC News Feb. 19, 2010

Canadian students ‘safe’ after boat capsizes off Brazil – TheStar.com Feb. 19, 2010

64 rescued after ‘catastrophic problems’ strike Canadian ship off Brazil – The Gazette – Feb. 19, 2010

I’ve posted about Concordia’s amazing program in the past and know the former owner and several of the captains and crew from my American Sail Training Association days. If you are not familiar with the Concordia or Class Afloat, please take a few minutes to watch this video about their amazing life forming programs for young students.

During a time when so many sail training vessels and tall ships are experiencing challenges, this is even more sad news. Concordia was a wonderful ship that did great work over the years and she will be sorely missed.



Tall Ships Sailors Never Do Anything Easy by Peter A. Mello

Think sailing a tall ship is challenging? That’s nothing compared to building one. Think building one is difficult, that’s nothing compared to finding the trees, cutting them down, dragging them out of the jungle, loading them on another tall ship and sailing them halfway around the world. Tall ships sailors never do anything easy.

Grab a beer and some popcorn because this will be the best reality TV that you’ll watch this week.

Flag dip to my friend Voytec on Facebook.



Google Ships: Duchesse Anne of Dunkirk, France by Peter A. Mello

Click on photo to go to Google Street View    
Duchesse Anne in Dunkirk, France – Formerly a German training-ship called Grossherzogin Elisabeth, built in 1901. She was saved from scrap by the City of Dunkirk in 1981 and is currently an exhibit at Musee Portuaire Dunkerque

. With an overall length of 90 m, she is the biggest tall ship preserved in France. (via GoogleEarthHacks)

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