BCC Aeolus Sad news this morning

BCC Aeolus was lost yesterday in the North Pacific 1200miles east of Japan.
Both sailors were safety rescued by a coastguard flying boat.
At this stage the information available points to an impact with an unknown object.

How awful - I guess it might have been one of the thousands of shipping containers that fall in the ocean from freighters EVERY year.
I don’t understand why the connections between the corners of these containers can’t be designed to locate more securely.

My sincere condolences to the people involved.
What a tragic and needless waste.

From Mainichi Shimbun (http://mainichi.jp/english/english/newsselect/news/20130622p2g00m0dm002000c.html):

Blind sailor, supporter rescued off Japanese island
SENDAI (Kyodo) – Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force on Friday rescued a blind sailor and his supporter in the Pacific off northeastern Japan after their small yacht was flooded with seawater, the Japan Coast Guard said.

Mitsuhiro Iwamoto, 46, and his supporter, 57-year-old newscaster Jiro Shimbo, were rescued at around 6:15 p.m. in waters around 1,200 kilometers southeast of Kinkasan Island in Miyagi Prefecture, the coast guard said.

They were taken to the MSDF’s Atsugi Base in Kanagawa Prefecture near Tokyo, the coast guard said, adding they were not injured and looked healthy.

Iwamoto, who has actively participated in yacht races for the visually impaired in and out of Japan, and Shimbo left Onahama port in the city of Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture in northeastern Japan, last Sunday in a bid to cross the Pacific to San Diego, California.

Earlier Friday, an MSDF search-and-rescue amphibious aircraft tried to rescue the pair after their office sought help from the Japan Coast Guard in the morning, saying the 6-ton yacht, about 13 meters long and 3 meters wide, was flooded with seawater.

But stormy conditions prevented the aircraft from rescuing the two sailors, who were waiting to be rescued aboard a lifeboat.

The MSDF sent another amphibious aircraft to the area to replace the first plane, which had to turn back due to a shortage of fuel after attempting to rescue the pair for around an hour.

Iwamoto and Shimbo left Osaka on June 8 and called at Iwaki, where they presented two training yachts to a local high school and other clubs that lost their yachts in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, their office said.

Iwamoto and Shimbo had planned to arrive in San Diego in August.

Sumio will post details soon. Sumio told me that sailing conditions had been better than the rough conditions of the past few days. Hiro Iwamoto, who was on watch, heard three loud bangs near the keel. Jiro Shinbo was asleep in the cabin and woke to find knee high water. The bilge pumps could not cope with the inflow.

Point your browser to http://b-sailing.blogspot.jp/ to see the blog of Jiro and Hiro as they prepared Aeolus for their voyage.

Very sad to lose a hull from the BCC fleet.

Bil

http://www.b-sailing.com/ has a chronology of the events of June 21.

The key events are:

07:35 (June 21) Jiro Shinbo contacted their support base to seek urgent assistance;

08:01 Jiro and Hiro abandoned BCC Aeolus and took to their life raft; and

18:40 rescue by the Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force.

Your browser will likely offer to translate for you (and probably give you a garbled but vaguely understandable version).

India’s Asian Age was one of the few English-language newspapers that had put the voyage in perspective. See their story at: http://www.asianage.com/newsmakers/blind-sailor-cross-pacific-539


Blind sailor to cross Pacific
Jun 09, 2013 | PTI

A blind sailor and his partner set sail on a small yacht on Saturday from Osaka harbour to cross the Pacific Ocean in what the organiser calls the world?s first such attempt by such a pair.

Mitsuhiro Iwamoto, 46, who has actively participated in yacht races for the visually impaired in and out of Japan, and newscaster Hiro Shinbo, 57, will call at Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture, before heading for San Diego where they plan to arrive in August.

?After about three months of training with Mr Shinbo, we got on quite well with each other. I feel full of emotion because I am at the start line of realising my dream,? Mr Iwamoto, a San Diego-based acupuncturist, said at a kickoff ceremony.

Before leaving Iwaki on June 16, they will present local high school and other clubs that lost their yachts in the 2011 quake-tsunami disaster with new gear, according to the organiser.

Bil

For a chartlet showing the last position of BCC Aeolus, see the report at:

http://www.sail-world.com/Asia/Blind-Japanese-sailors-hopes-dashed,-rescued-from-liferaft/111129

Japan Times also covers the story:

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/06/23/national/blind-sailor-friend-rescued-in-pacific/

None of the news media is focusing on the cause of the disaster.

None has yet pointed out that this was the second West to East crossing of the Pacific Ocean by Aeolus.

Would it be too much to hope that this disaster might start a process that would result in better control of shipping containers on cargo ships?

Cheers

Bil

1935Hrs: 6/20/13 The “Blind Sailing” project committee receive satellite phone call from Mr. Shinbou on the S.V. Aeolus. He advises that water is flooding the cabin from the starboard side and they are trying to pump out the water. their position is : 32’58" N 152’49" E approximately 1200 km (745 miles) from Miyagi prefecture, on the Honshu Island of Japan.

1941Hrs: The Committee contacts the Japanese Coast Guard asking for assistance.

2001Hrs: Mr. Shinbou calls the committee again and advises: "Flooding water is greater than they can pump out. They have to abandon the S.V.Aeolus and move to life-raft in order to survive. But both Shinbou & Iwasaki (Hiro) are in good condition with no injury.

2040Hrs: The Japanese Coast Guard 2nd dept. contacts the JMSDF (Japan Maritime Self Defense Force) and requests them to dispatch a rescue unit.

2150Hrs: Mr. Shinbou contacts the committee stating that their current position is 32’ 58"N 152’ 49"E, with a sea state of 2~3m (6-9 feet). They have moved to the life raft and are in good condition.

2344Hrs: A Japanese Coast Guard plane (LAJ500) arrives at the wrecked area and locates the life raft. They communicate with Shinbou successfully.

0030Hrs: 6/21/13 The JMSDF dispatch their flying boat (US2) from Atsugi airbase to rescue Shinbou and Hiro.

1400~1500Hrs: US2 arrives the wreck area and tries to land on the water, but sea state too rough to land, therefore they return to the base without landing. The weather was SE wind15m/sec. sea state 4m (12ft).

1753Hrs: 2nd US2 flying boat arrives the area and successfully lands in the water close to the life-raft.

1814Hrs: Shinbou & Iwasaki successfully rescued and aboard the US2.

2231Hrs: US2 lands at MSDF’s Atsugi Base in Kanagawa Prefecture near Tokyo

Mr. Shinbou and Iwamoto (Hiro) were TV interviewed right after their arrival and they the event as follows:

  1. At the time it was HIRO’s watch and Shinbou was sleeping.

  2. Hiro heard three “bangs” on the hull of the boat.

  3. Hiro noticed the sound of gushing water on the starboard side.

  4. Hiro woke up Shinbou. and when he woke, the water level in the cabin was ankle deep.

  5. Shinbou and Hiro started pumping out the water and contacted the committee.

  6. Being unable to stem the flow of water, when the water rose to the knee level in the cabin, Shinbou contacted the committee again, advising that they have to abandon the Aeolus and move to the life raft.

These are the events as related by Mr. Shinbou and Hiro.

Sumio

I am sorry but there is some correction of the time are need.
First of all the Aeolus wrecked area’s time zone is GMT/UTC +10/+11 summer time.
And following time is the copy from their announcement so I think they used Japan time zone which isGMT/UTC +9/+10 summer time (We do not have summer time in Japan).

07:35Hrs: 6/20/13 The “Blind Sailing” project committee receive satellite phone call from Mr. Shinbou on the S.V. Aeolus. He advises that water is flooding the cabin from the starboard side and they are trying to pump out the water. their position is : 32’58" N 152’49" E approximately 1200 km (745 miles) from Miyagi prefecture, on the Honshu Island of Japan.

07:41Hrs: The Committee contacts the Japanese Coast Guard asking for assistance.

08:01Hrs: Mr. Shinbou calls the committee again and advises: "Flooding water is greater than they can pump out. They have to abandon the S.V.Aeolus and move to life-raft in order to survive. But both Shinbou & Iwasaki (Hiro) are in good condition with no injury.

08:40Hrs: The Japanese Coast Guard 2nd dept. contacts the JMSDF (Japan Maritime Self Defense Force) and requests them to dispatch a rescue unit.

09:50Hrs: Mr. Shinbou contacts the committee stating that their current position is 32’ 58"N 152’ 49"E, with a sea state of 2~3m (6-9 feet). They have moved to the life raft and are in good condition.

11:44Hrs: A Japanese Coast Guard plane (LAJ500) arrives at the wrecked area and locates the life raft. They communicate with Shinbou successfully.

12:30Hrs: 6/21/13 The JMSDF dispatch their flying boat (US2) from Atsugi airbase to rescue Shinbou and Hiro.

These are the time correction needed log.
All the log after that are written with correct time.

Sumio

P.s. Please forgive my poor English. English is not my native language.

This is the latest video released from the committee.
This video shows some black (whole?) matter getting close and hit starboard side of Aeolus.

I just show this on TV and that was much clear that on this Video but still you can see it or them.

Sumio

Wow - so easy to miss this if you’re in open ocean and busy with something else on the boat…
It’s sickening to think of all the crap floating around in our seas. Perhaps it could be something from the Tsunami time.

Ouch!

It’s surprisingly big (ie big enough to be a 20’ or 40’ shipping container, judging by the break of the sea over it when it’s still forward of the bow) and it does seem to have a sharp corner sticking above the surface.

Just after the impact (ie when the backstay rattles), the water looks red - is that the colour of the object or Aeolus’ antifouling?

Bil

This afternoon the Japanese media are saying that they hit a whale.
The sinking is getting a lot of TV time here in Japan.

This afternoon the Japanese media are saying that they hit a whale.
The sinking is getting a lot of TV time here in Japan.

This is incredible footage…

On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 2:20 AM, BCC Forums bccforums@samlmorse.com wrote:

My god,this freaks me out. Absolutely incredible. It does appear to be a whale to my eyes.

Stop action of the object in the video.

image.jpg

Surely a whale strike shouldn’t hole the boat? The impact seemed to me to be more like a very hard solid object…

Some video. The impact did appear to be rather jarring. The boat was traveling at maybe 5 to 6 knots? I would think that the boat hull shape would help to deflect some of the force of impact when hitting the density of a whale but I am no expert. I would not guess that the flatter impact area of a whale would breach the hull but maybe cause some bulkhead damage etc. To actually breach the hull is amazing given the typical layup of the BCC.

Glad no injury or loss of life .

Mark
SV “Lightfoot”

Ahoy All , I concur with Mark regarding the tough lay-up of F/G on a BCC .

Remember that Calliste went through that Tsunami in Telega Harbor , Palau Langkawi , Malaysia , and her impact damage did cause a small amount of leaking just above the waterline , but eventhough the F/G hull was crushed in a midship area the leak was quite manageable .

My wife , Lang , thinks that a ramming of 3 whales makes more sense , to do that kind of damage . She remembers the hull bottom gouges and that the BCC’s hull seems designed to deflect impacts , and I am inclined to agree with her .

Didn’t we all read that liferaft survival story of I think it was the “Bailies” (sp-?) near Panama , as their wooden sailboat was rammed and sank , by whales ?

There is a good website on whale rammings at :

http://www.yachtsentinel.co.uk/SeaMammals/mammals4.htm

It does look alot like a whale… right at 0:27 where you see a black shape (fin?) jut out of the water off the starboard bow. The thought of the boat being holed below the waterline in this situation make my hair stand on end!! I agree It’s hard to imgaine just running into it would create that kind of force.

Another thought on the ramming idea… it could have been a case of mistaken identity if she still had the large Orca painted on her starboard side below the waterline. If a whale or whales thought they were being attacked by an Orca (whcih is know to happen) that could have triggerd a ramming. Just a thought.

Relieved to here they both came though unharmed.

-Bob
#32 S/V Mandy

aeolus_3.JPG

One of those things that make you go …HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
Could not possibly be this…a pretty big in your face for a whale I would think.
Is this for real ?