Unlit sailboat badly damaged in collision

| 12/06/2018 | 33 Comments
Cayman News Service

Sailboat damaged in collision, 11 June

(CNS): The RCIPS Joint Marine Unit is investigating a collision in the North Sound yesterday evening when a 35ft power boat struck a unmanned sailboat that was anchored without mooring lights in the area of Duck Pond. The boating accident happened just after 7:30pm Monday, when the Carbo Express vessel, travelling from Cayman Kai, collided and extensively damaged the unlit sailing vessel.

Cayman News Service

Sailboat damaged Monday night, 11 June

Although there were no injuries resulting from the collision, the police warned that boats, whether manned or not, must have lights on at night.

The power vessel sustained what appeared to be minor damage but the sailboat was extensively damaged, police said.

Acting superintendent Brad Ebanks, head of Specialist Operations, said, “We would like to remind the public to adhere to all aspects of the Port Authority Law. All vessels, whether anchored (even unmanned) or in operation are required to have lights illuminated at night. As the boating community grows, we all have to increase our compliance, caution and vigilance whilst on the water.”

He added, “Under the law, vessels anchored more than two hundred yards from the shoreline must carry riding lights at night, unless in areas protected by reef, or otherwise authorized by the director of the port.”

Visit the RCIPS website for boat safety tips

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Category: Local News

Comments (33)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    An unit boat moored in the dark is an invitation for an accident and the owner is at fault in that case.

    However, he is not the only one at fault.

    Running in the dark with no RADAR and lookout is also an invitation to an accident and in the event of a collision the Captain of the moving boat is very likely to be at least partially at fault as well! This is especially true if the same Captain has passed by the same moored boat on multiple occasions over multiple days and therefore ought to have been fully informed of the position of this boat (and maybe even that it was unlit). In that case he is almost certainly largely responsible for any collision.

    A Sunday afternoon at Rum point is a pleasure in life that you can hardly find anywhere else in the world but it can be very costly and even end in tragedy if the person in charge is not responsible enough to look out for their passengers, crew, the boats and others on the water. We have had far too many examples of this! Take this shit seriously and be responsible!

  2. Anonymous says:

    The Cayman Islands Sailing Club offers sailing lessons and will soon be offering a power boat training course! Sign up soon!

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  3. SSM345 says:

    Once we were travelling from RP to Kaibo at about 730 and missed a man in his 14ft boat by inches whilst travelling at about 50mph+; in fact we clipped his little outboard and he dove out the boat. We were lucky no one got seriously hurt when we had to maneuver out the way at that speed; let alone the guy in the boat not getting cut in half. Upon circling back round we asked him whilst all in shock where the f**k his lights were?

    His response was “Unna the 2nd group of people to ask me that tonight”.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Just because it’s darker out, doesn’t excuse you from the requirement to look where you’re going. Maybe under those conditions, you shouldn’t be going off at flank speed into the void? There are all kinds of stationary and moving hazards in the North Sound, not least of which, CUC cable marker buoys, shoals, and reefs. You should expect to find fishermen and kids in unlit 15 footers!

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      • SSM345 says:

        3:36pm: Expect to find people in unlit 15fters at night in middle of the sea? And with kids? Well that’s just f**king stupidity at its finest. Maybe they should expect to find boats crashing into them when they venture out like that. Probably with no life jackets, oars, flares or epirbs too right? Your logic is amazing, please do everyone a favor and stay off the water. What you going to propose next, that they put a limit on the amount of HP a boat can have to 15? Absolute Muppet.

      • SSM345 says:

        P.S. we were looking exactly where we were going, THATS WHY WE SAW HIM AT THE LAST MIUNTE Capt Obvious! Maybe we hadn’t eaten enough carrots that day.I will remember next time to go in reverse and take 4hrs to get to our destination because there might be absolute morons with no lights on sitting right in the middle of a traffic lane fishing for grunts. Have you ever been on the sea at night btw? Having over 30yrs experience in the NS you know where everything lies that fixed i.e. markers, reefs, shoals; there’s an amazing piece of technology called GPS or a Depth Finder too if you need that fancy stuff; but personal knowledge is even better. Responsible boat owners have something called lights that they turn on when that big orange ball goes to sleep. Are you the owner of FARGO?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Why on earth would you be traveling at 50 mph+ In the dark in a recreational boating area? Granted people should have lights but that’s the same as saying “I was driving 100mph on the Linford Pierson Highway and almost hit a man on a bike going the wrong way without lights”

  4. Anonymous says:

    “Under the law, vessels anchored more than two hundred yards from the shoreline must carry riding lights at night, unless in areas protected by reef”. So since (a) the North Sound is an area protected by reef and (b) Faro was possibly (I Do Not Know) within 200 yards of the shoreline (the Duck Pond / North Sound Estates channel is pretty close to the shore) then there was actually no legal requirement for them to have a light right? Yup, best adhere to all aspects of them laws Captn.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Port Authority Anchoring Rules (for all vessels):
      https://www.caymanport.com/wp-content/uploads/PortAuthoritysafety.pdf

      “Anchoring is prohibited in marked channels, turning basins, within all Marine Park Zones and Environmental zone (outside of the Port Anchorage Area)”.

      “At night, any vessels anchored in the Port Anchorage Area or moored more than two hundred yards from shore must carry one white light visible for 360 degrees”.

      “No vessel shall exceed a speed of five knots when within two hundred yards of shore or when within fifty yards of any vessel at anchor”.

  5. From dusk to dawn says:

    Yes the sail boat had no lights on but what can be said about the other boat? What speed must it have been going at to not have been able to avoid the massive sail boat ahead? And it’s well known sail boats when manned taker a longer time to move so seems to me the captain of the other boat was not paying attention. And this just after sunset? Perhaps a day of drinking then boat driving should be looked into.

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    • West Bay Premier says:

      From dusk to dawn , I have to agree with 100% , and the boaters today need to be a lot more responsible and experienced in boating. What i see here is the power boat is just as responsible for the accident as the sail boat . If the power boat went out in daylight , didn’t they see the sail boat and know that it was moored there , and when returning back they should return with cauction. But I guess that after having dinner you would forget that the sail boat was anchor there . I guess that if there had been a reef in their route the same thing would have happened .

      Speeding on boats in the dark of night seems to be the way for some Captains , isn’t this the second time that going too fast in the dark of night has caused this . No one cannot tell me that excessive speed wasn’t most of the cause for boat going up on iron shore , and power boat demolish sail boat .

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    • Alan Roffey says:

      This accident was entirely the sailboat owners fault for not having an anchor light, and his choice of anchoring spot. The speed of the other boat has nothing to do with it.

      When travelling south from Cayman Kai towards North Sound Estates most power boaters follow the boundary of the Marine Park. There are many lights on the shoreline that can cause night blindness, not least the Marine Unit Base’s floodlights pointing out into the sound. It is very hard to pick up an unlit vessel against that skyline, even if the hull is white.

      All boat operators ought to be able to rely upon other users to be properly lit at night. There have been rules about lights to avoid collisions at sea for much longer than rules of the road.

      If FARO was anchored unlit along that busy route then the accident was almost guaranteed by its owner to happen.

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      • West Bay Premier says:

        Alan if there had been a reef there , would the power boat have missed it ? probably not because there was too much speed and fun and darkness and no boating experience involved ..

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      • Anonymous says:

        Amazing how these self appointed experts who were not there or witnessed the collision can make judgements based on a media report. Perhaps his anchor was on and the bulb blew but you have assumed the ‘owner’ of the sailing vessel was entirely at fault he may not have even been present! The owner is not necessarily the master.

        • Alan Roffey says:

          A blown lamp in the anchor light is still the Owner’s responsibility, even if he employed a Master/Captain/Skipper and whether or not either of them were aboard.

          I’m going back to my Patrick O’Brian novel now.

  6. Call sign :Broadway says:

    Dear 4:26pm The port authority laws that a boat at anchor must have a light on but the question is at a stone throw distance from the much touted UK funded JMU Marine Base how could this happen??? No patrols??? i guess It would never happened with the old DTF marine unit who were always out and about at night especially in the North Sound.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Regardless of no light, it as a big boat with white hull which seems to have been hit side on at speed. Yet another boat travelling in the dark at speed, proper lookout would have seen it.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Just because the sailboat was not displaying an anchor or masthead light, does not excuse the other boat failing to a: post a bow lookout , b: travel at such a speed to be able to avoid colliding with a 38 something foot..light color boat at anchor.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Seize the sailboat!

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  9. Anonymous says:

    ZZZZZZZ, more laws and regulations that go unenforced

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    • Anonymous says:

      What are the laws and regulations that you speak of? Please tell us.

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      • John Lin says:

        Most driving regulations for a start. Tinted windows, non existent license plates, excess speed, drunk driving, off road motorbikes etc.
        Litter laws with trash thrown out car windows.
        Business licensing laws on public beach.
        No health insurance for workers.

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        • Anonymous says:

          So true.

          I was asking about the laws and regulations relating to boats like this one.

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        • Anonymous says:

          So nothing whatsoever to do with the article/situation in question then. Thanks for proving that the original comment was useless.

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      • Anonymous says:

        You are kidding right?

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      • Anonymous says:

        Here you go…please read!

        Port Regulations (2013 Revision), Part II: Navigation
        http://www.gov.ky/portal/pls/portal/docs/1/11525777.PDF

        “Anchorage”
        §21. It is unlawful to anchor any vessel in any of the turning basins or channels in the ports or in a navigational channel listed in Schedule 9, or otherwise to obstruct navigation except in cases of actual emergency.

        – and –

        “Lights at Night”
        §22. (1) Vessels anchored, moored or manoeuvring in the territorial water-ways of the Islands must at all times exhibit the lights required for their class by collision regulations.

        • Anonymous says:

          S21 – no one has said the Faro was in the channel .So S21 doesn’t apply.

          S22 – As quoted in the article itself (last paragraph) the anchor light requirement doesn’t apply inside the reef.

      • Anonymous says:

        §30 (4) No vessel shall exceed a speed of five knots when within fifty yards of any vessel which is at anchor.

        §36 (2) Vessels shall anchor, moor, and berth to the satisfaction of the Director, and shall take such additional precautions in severe weather as may be ordered.

        §114 (2) Anchorage or lay-up charges at the rate of fifteen cents per foot of the overall length of the vessel (as calculated in subregulation (1)) per day or part thereof for each day or part thereof after the first seventy-two hours shall be paid by all vessels except locally owned vessels whilst in a port awaiting orders or whilst laying-up within territorial waters.

        §141 The port anchorage areas for the ports of George Town and Cayman Brac are prescribed in Schedule 7.

        SCHEDULE 7 PORT ANCHORAGE AREA

        The following area is designated the port anchorage area for the Port of George Town-
        From Lat 19 18′ 36″ N, and Long 81 23′ 19″ W, thence in a westerly direction to a point at Lat 19 18′ 36″ N and Long 81 23′ 48″ W, thence in a southerly direction to a point at Lat 19 17′ 34″ N and Long 81 23′ 38″ S, thence in an easterly direction to a point on the shore at Lat 19 17′ 34″ N, and Long 81 23′ 7″ W and thence along the Foreshore to Lat 19 18′ 36″N and Long 81 23′ 19″ W.

        §143 (2) Vessels anchored more than two hundred yards from the shoreline must carry riding lights by night unless otherwise authorised in that behalf by the Director or in areas protected by reef.

        ==> Note there is NO MOORING ALLOWED WITHIN 200 yards of shore in the Cayman Islands, without express permission of the Port Authority Director, unless it’s at a marina or within the prescribed Port Authority’s Anchorage Area above!! <==

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        • Anonymous says:

          No mooring within 200 yards of shore? Which regulation says that? (Marine Police are going to be busy issuing tickets for that one.)

        • Anonymous says:

          A lot of the laws/regulations need to be rationalised and updated to reflect the current realities and without a doubt there needs to be legislation to PROHIBIT being in charge of a vessel underway whilst intoxicated!

          Almost every serious incident or accident in Cayman waters can be linked to lack of experience, lack of safety equipment or intoxication and far too often all three! The sea is very unforgiving and it is time these issues are taken seriously!

          The Ministry of Tourism (which has responsibility for the Port Authority) should be motivated to address this but if they are not interested then the Premier himself should pursue an initiative to appropriately update our laws in this respect. It will save lives!

    • Anonymous says:

      I am also concerned about the large barge that is anchored around the same area. I am not sure if it had anchor lights or not; more that likely this will be its final resting ground.

  10. Anonymous says:

    That good ship FARO was moored unmanned near the marina in North Sound earlier this year. It dragged its anchor and ran aground in a Norwester, and the marine police boarded it then.

    Its owner doesn’t really seem to understand sailing, bless him.

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