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Bosun killed in tender accident
Mate
Posted: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 12:26 AM
Joined: 06/04/2010
Posts: 1


I just heard the sad story of the bosun who was killed when he hit a boat at anchor this past weekend and was wondering if anyone had more information? Anone who was there? My condolences to his family.
Kate Lardy
Posted: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 1:48 AM
Joined: 24/07/2008
Posts: 22


The article that Mate is referring to can be found here.


Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 8:54 AM
He's still a missing person. Any helpful information would be appreciated.
Capt.AdG
Posted: Wednesday, September 29, 2010 10:14 PM
Joined: 15/02/2009
Posts: 13


Sad, very sad story! I participated on the MOB SAR operation with our tender. I joined the search group at 11.30 and it was touching to see so many crew involved in the desperate search to find a crew community fellow lost at sea in a so little surface, making it difficult to believe that we failed to find him. Our condolences to Williams family, his friends and his crew fellows. Captain Chris of Maltese Falcon did a great job with his “on scene coordination”. He was able to put us all together in well thought search patterns, talking to the local authorities and have a good word for friends and crew missing their Bosun William. How can this happen? Is this a question or is this something we already know long time? English is not my language and it would take me a page to explain properly my thoughts. I think we have to learn from this terrible accident to avoid similar losses. Fact is that during major events in front of harbours, there are always a huge number of boats on anchor. Shuttle tenders are so many during day and night, bringing people on board or ashore, between boats, shopping and so on. The sea state is like in a force 5 and the tenders are running 20-30 knots to satisfy the requested tasks. During the night, myriads of lights from shore make anchor lights disappear and alter the ability to estimate distances and size. This is a scenario we live with, since Yachts were involved in static charters. The bay in front of the harbour during an event, should be considered as a “Harbour extension” and therefore the speed limit should be 3-5 knots … tenders in “displacement mode”! if this would be the rule, no agent, owner or guest could put pressure on the drivers. In addition but not necessary if the speed limit would be a rule, is to illuminate all yachts properly to make a clear identification of the hull dimensions possible.
junior
Posted: Thursday, September 30, 2010 6:39 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Good man Adg....keep your crew off the throttles. For me one of the most dangerous times of the day is the " High Season " ....guests back and forth into town... nightime tender run. We operate small, 3.8 meter tenders with twist grip tiller outboards. Typically the tender is loaded down with people, the running lights are very discreet because of the low freeboard and the backround lights on shore and in the anchorage virtually obscure the tender illumination. Night after night we are chugging back to the yacht harassed by high speed yacht tenders flying back and forth, with only our ears to warn of danger approaching.. One day there will be a huge tragedy when a low tender full of guests is run over at night
Janine
Posted: Thursday, September 30, 2010 4:10 PM
Joined: 02/05/2008
Posts: 392


As the search continues for Bosun William Black of S/Y Burrasca more resources are needed. The Black family would like search efforts to continue in order to locate the body of William, now presumed dead. A submarine or ROV is needed to search Port Hercules and the deep anchorages off Monaco. Captains, crew and industry professionals with access to these resources are being asked to offer their services or subs/ROVs. If you are able to help, email us and we’ll get in contact with those assisting in the search. Janine@dockwalk.com or kate@dockwalk.com. 


Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, September 30, 2010 4:13 PM
Wish I coud help. Was the tender ever recovered ? Where and in what condition.
simongb-N2
Posted: Thursday, September 30, 2010 8:26 PM
Joined: 21/06/2008
Posts: 17


Very sad, so young and sounds like he was a fun loving young man, sincere condolences to William's parents and his friends and crew members. We will be thinking of him.

Rusty Wrench
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 12:05 AM
Joined: 21/09/2010
Posts: 207


In support and further to junior's comments, I would like to add the following; The vessel I work on was also anchored outside Monaco harbour during the Monaco show and on the night in question. There were many, many yachts, all anchored in VERY close proximity to each other, fortunately without incident. It was an obvious scene to witness, even by a casual observer, the dangerously high speeds of small craft weaving between the anchored vessels; a small wonder that a head on collision between any two tender boats did not happen. Even with night time/restricted visibility it seemed not to be a deterrent to the speed of the small boats. Large, stationary solid objects do not 'jump out' in the the path of high speed vehicles. Nightfall and the so called lack of adequate lighting on anchored vessels should serve as damn good reason to be extremely careful.
Joanna
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 12:15 AM
Joined: 30/09/2010
Posts: 1


Although I didn't know William, his parents are long-standing family friends and wonderful people. Many questions remain, there seems to be a 30 minute gap between the collision and the raising of the alert - largely because the Fado was not manned at the time. Were there any clues when the tender was found? Was he sited falling into the sea? Could anyone be certain that William was still in it when the crash occurred? Was there anyone else on board (no-one else has been mentioned), in which case could he have fallen or been knocked from the tender, or suffered from some sort of (acute) medical condition on board, at some point between the shore and the crash site? Could the tender have somehow set off without anyone on board? Without wishing to supply false hope, could he conceivably have been intercepted, mugged or abducted or even lying in a local hospital oblivious to the commotion? Rare though this is, such events happen. Capt.AdG's update is welcome and his thoughts are interesting. He comments that the harbour area was quite contained, thus he was surprised that William was not found. Without any kind of body or answers, it must be incredibly difficult for William's family (or the family of anyone lost under similar circumstances) to come to terms with the tragedy. My heart goes out to them ...
junior
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 7:34 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Did anyone think of contacting the Monaco Oceanographic Institute ? If the crew is indeed under water, the liguro/provencal current drift off Monaco and Hydrographic profiles were well studied before the present harbour barrier was constructed. http://www.hydro-international.com/issues/articles/id19-The_Extension_of_Port_Hercule_in_Monaco.html
Henning
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 9:39 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052



Depending on the individuals body density, water temp and ruptures to plural spaces, it can take a couple of weeks before decomposition gasses get them floating, but typically they will float. Major bottom searches with ROVs and subs will have a remote chance of finding him at best. The percentage of people lost at sea being found again in a search is a minority one. More likely they turn up on a beach or in a fisherman's net in a few weeks.

The way tenders are operated, especially at night I also find disturbing. It seems like either the subject of operational safety and the term "safe speed" and all the factors that have to be considered in its determination isn't covered in the "powerboat" classes, or that the operators just don't bother. Regardless the reason, I see a lot of unsafe tender operation. "The owner/guest... wanted to go fast" is not a determinant in traveling at an unsafe speed. "This is as fast as it's safe to go" has been working well for me as a response for over 20 years. If you are the operator, it's your call, your passengers are just that, passengers.

Anonymous
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 11:17 AM
As William's godmum I didn't want to hear that first paragraph, however, now I know the worst, and I would just like to say a huge thank you to all those helping to find William and the support they are giving his family.xx

junior
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 11:26 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


You really have to ask why captains permit the use of " full on " yacht owner guest tenders when the yacht is not in operational mode. I regularly see crew using them for garbage runs ashore. Some excuse can be made for these very high powered tenders being used to take guests on long range tours, or fishing, sking, but never for day to day crew duties. As for education....operators with my flag already must hold a license to navigate a vessel powered by over 10hp. Safe speed is always taught . Unfortunatly Crew all to easily become invincible behind the wheel of these high powered machines and disregard common sense safe operation procedures. Its very good of Dockwalk to highlight these tragedies. Many accidents happen that go unreported. A few years ago I interviewed a stewardess. She came to the yacht for the interview , took off her jacket and revealed a grotesque railroad track of scar stitch from her shoulder to elbow. This stewardess was a passenger in a highspeed tender in the Antigua which struck a wake at 40 knots..she was standing at the center console, , lost grip and flew forward against a ss guard rail shattering the bones in her arm. Just before I left Croatia I noticed a picture in the local newspaper of high speed rib minus its bow section tube as a result of a nighttime collision with a fish farm.
Henning
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 1:50 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


junior wrote:
You really have to ask why captains permit the use of " full on " yacht owner guest tenders when the yacht is not in operational mode. I regularly see crew using them for garbage runs ashore. Some excuse can be made for these very high powered tenders being used to take guests on long range tours, or fishing, sking, but never for day to day crew duties.


I use them for regular duties. Machines abhor sitting. Take it for a responsible run once a week, let everything get up to operating temp, play with all the buttons and switches. Make sure everything is working properly. Deterioration doesn't stop when the boat does either so it gives me a chance to look around and evaluate the overall condition and get squawks squared away so there are no problems when the owner wants to use his gear. There is also operator proficiency and training. I've never had an owner question me on doing that with any and all the gear including taking out the big boat.

Henning
Posted: Friday, October 1, 2010 1:55 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Anonymous wrote:
As William's godmum I didn't want to hear that first paragraph, however, now I know the worst, and I would just like to say a huge thank you to all those helping to find William and the support they are giving his family.xx

If that is addressing my post, yeah, sorry, didn't mean to be cruel, but sometimes a reality check sooner than later is better. Sorry to hear what happened to your godson William. I hope there's resolution for you all in the near future.

Capt.AdG
Posted: Sunday, October 3, 2010 11:16 AM
Joined: 15/02/2009
Posts: 13


Dear Janine, it is known that the current at lower levels is setting strong westwards, coming from the south part of Italy along the french coast. Oceanographic institutes will conferm and might be able to give better data. Probably a chart showing the pread of the Caulerpa Taxifolia would help. The killer algae started her voyage from the oceanographic institue of Monaco. A few years ago the "Contessa Vacca Augusta" fell in the water in front of Portofino ... she was found only 3 days later in the bay of St. Tropez. Monaco has deep waters and I would not be surprised if they will find poor William somewhere west from Monaco.
Libby Nicholson
Posted: Tuesday, October 5, 2010 4:45 AM
Joined: 05/10/2010
Posts: 1


I have just heard the very very sad news about Will's accident...I know William to be a very responsible and caring crew member....He will always be remembered with great love and profound affection....Will cared more for others and showed it in his kindness towards his mates....I feel deep sympathy for this loss for his family...We have all lost a great friend and a legend in the industry...We will miss you, Will, at The Pineapple House in Antigua....
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, October 5, 2010 12:30 PM

Sincere condolances to William's family, friends and crew.  Does anyone know what happened to William's belongings from the S/Y Buarrasca?  It would be helpful for these to be preserved in a sealed plastic bag and provided to the UK police for forensic work before being passed on to his family.


Brian
Posted: Tuesday, October 5, 2010 1:36 PM
Joined: 05/10/2010
Posts: 1


I heard this tragic story, but didn't know it was my good friend Will Black until receiving a phone call on Sunday. My heartfelt condolences go out to Will’s family, friends and crewmates as we share the loss of Will and a character who stood out in our lives.


yachtone
Posted: Wednesday, October 6, 2010 12:01 AM
Joined: 27/07/2008
Posts: 96


The insults I received after offering safety advice regarding the last reported crew fatality make me hesitant to post further advice knowing I will be pilloried for promoting unsafe practices,  however it is to important a subject not to respond to.
          I am not in any way promoting or condoning the operation of tenders at unsafe speeds, and Junior even your little inflatable can go fast enough, with only one or two people onboard to kill, if it runs into an obstruction . My tip to help you all avoid a tragedy is to try and pick out a light beyond your destination and check very carefully that its reflection in the water extends in an UNBROKEN line all the way to you, if it doesn't move laterally until it does then follow that unbroken line till you are close enough to see your destination clearly, safe navigating & condolences to all affected.

Henning
Posted: Wednesday, October 6, 2010 9:20 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


yachtone wrote:
The insults I received after offering safety advice regarding the last reported crew fatality make me hesitant to post further advice knowing I will be pilloried for promoting unsafe practices,  however it is to important a subject not to respond to.
          I am not in any way promoting or condoning the operation of tenders at unsafe speeds, and Junior even your little inflatable can go fast enough, with only one or two people onboard to kill, if it runs into an obstruction . My tip to help you all avoid a tragedy is to try and pick out a light beyond your destination and check very carefully that its reflection in the water extends in an UNBROKEN line all the way to you, if it doesn't move laterally until it does then follow that unbroken line till you are close enough to see your destination clearly, safe navigating & condolences to all affected.


I can't see any reason why you should be pilloried for saying that. It is one of several techniques that should be employed whenever available.

junior
Posted: Wednesday, October 6, 2010 1:06 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Steering into the reflection of a light is always good seamanship....when you see the light reflection tail on the water there can be no obstruction on your track. Paralleling the coast close in, then fetching your destination by steering a perpendicular also works fine . All night time , low visibility techniques, including the use of your hearing to identify incoming targets assume that the tender is travelling in quite mode, at displacement speed, operated by a sober seaman. Its speed and stupificants that cause trouble . When I Tboned that unlit steel mooring buoy this summer ,at displacement speed , it only caused embarrassment. Its also critical for tender operators to realize that a vast proportion of the bareboat charter fleet is returning back to their yacht after dinner in a stubby, overpacked, 2 and a half meter putput tender with no lights whatsoever. When you run them down, you may escape liability because they were navigating unlit , but you will carry the guilt of killing a family for the rest of your life.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, October 6, 2010 7:59 PM
I heard the driver was only on board for two weeks and was driving a Contender go-fast with twin whatevers on the back, and that he buried it up to the console in the side of the vessel it struck. Does anyone no if any of this is true. I would hate to add to the continuance of a rumour. Are there any facts or photos out there ?? Albeit, the details don't detract from the tragedy and I always am saddened to hear of the loss of another sailor.
junior
Posted: Thursday, October 7, 2010 9:24 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


It really makes no difference what type of tender nor the employment longevity of its driver. The fact is the whole super yacht fleet is guilty. High speed tenders are a plague and high crew churn rate on yachts is well known. Its the responsibility of the captain to control the situation by devising fool proof operational techniques.
Rusty Wrench
Posted: Thursday, October 7, 2010 10:57 AM
Joined: 21/09/2010
Posts: 207


Hear hear junior!, perhaps mandatory use of oars after sunset combined with compulsory confiscation of ignition keys or disabling the motors with a light sensitive switch are good examples of the ''fool proof techniques'' you seek. ''The fact is the whole super yacht fleet is guilty'' I presume by 'super yacht' you mean anything larger/more complex than the honest, simple, harmless, perfect vessel you operate? Be very careful how you lay blame whilst claiming to be the know-it-all in every subject.
enc
Posted: Thursday, October 7, 2010 6:52 PM
Joined: 07/10/2010
Posts: 1


Whilst this a forum, lets not forget that it pertains to the tragic death of William Black and thus should not be the place for idle gossip,speculation and comments close to slander. William was returning at 9.40pm to go on watch on s/y Burrasca as a thorough, diligent, capable and professional crew member, who would not have been a bosun had he not been! The police have witness statements which confirm his capability on leaving the harbour that night. The tender was not" buried" in the side of the s/y Fado but left the yacht with a minor scratch only . The tender console was not damaged in the way anonymous speculates from "rumours". May I remind junior and" anonymous" that William Black,s family will read their comments. The family have a history of heart problems- will,s cousin died aged 39 , and it is a possibility that Will could have been dead before the crash. A huge thank you to captain AdG for his thorough and helpful comments on this tragic accident and for his help on 25th september.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, October 20, 2010 5:42 AM

I would just like to thank enc for his post, pointing out the obvious.  As a friend of the Black family and someone who has extremely fond memories for William and knows the devastation his loss has caused to all who knew and loved him it is not helpful for people to be casting aspersions towards his character or making observations regarding his abilities.  This is a terrible tragedy made worse by the loss of poor Will's body, for friends such as myself who know little about the yachting industry this forum has revealed some details which can help us come to terms with this loss.  Reality can be tough to understand and something so shocking as this can be hard to come to terms with.  Reading untrue comments about Will is neither helpful or necessary.  Thank you to those who have helped me to understand what actually happened and those who searched and those who are using their knowledge to help and prevent this from happening in the future but please 'junior' and 'anonymous' think very carefully before making such statements.  All it achieves is to cause uneccessary heartache and pain to us who loved him.

 


junior
Posted: Wednesday, October 20, 2010 8:13 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Anonymous....Readers have no idea of the circumstances behind this tragedy. We do know a crew was killed. Readers can either eulogize this crew or comment on obvious safety issues which affect all on the yachts. Tender operation deserves critical comment. Tender operators need to be constantly reminded of the concept of safe speed, sharp lookout and the possible fatal consequences of their actions.
Henning
Posted: Thursday, October 21, 2010 1:19 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Anonymous wrote:

I would just like to thank enc for his post, pointing out the obvious.  As a friend of the Black family and someone who has extremely fond memories for William and knows the devastation his loss has caused to all who knew and loved him it is not helpful for people to be casting aspersions towards his character or making observations regarding his abilities.  This is a terrible tragedy made worse by the loss of poor Will's body, for friends such as myself who know little about the yachting industry this forum has revealed some details which can help us come to terms with this loss.  Reality can be tough to understand and something so shocking as this can be hard to come to terms with.  Reading untrue comments about Will is neither helpful or necessary.  Thank you to those who have helped me to understand what actually happened and those who searched and those who are using their knowledge to help and prevent this from happening in the future but please 'junior' and 'anonymous' think very carefully before making such statements.  All it achieves is to cause uneccessary heartache and pain to us who loved him.

 

Well, that brings up a couple of issues. First off this is an industry forum, not a bereavement and remembrance site. I've been in the maritime and aviation sectors for over 20 years and I always recommend that people not involved in the industries who have lost a loved one in an occupational accident stay away from industry forums and other publications if hearing a criticism of your loved one will upset you. The fact is, most people who get killed in our industry do so of errors in judgment, either their own or someone else's. Since he was alone at the time, this leaves either a medical issue that left him incapacitated or he failed to safely navigate the vessel he was the sole occupant of. Outside of pirates and snipers, that's really the only choices. Considering the multiple accidents and fatalities every year that happen due to errors in operational judgment, the analysis and conversation over this accident among industry personnel will inevitably drift in that direction because that is where lessons for others in the industry can be taught to help further their judgment and hopefully prevent future accidents.

If you want to read a cold, clinical and sometimes cruel analysis of the event, then these are good places to read, but as you note, they can be quite upsetting to the bereaved. If you are wanting to read fond rememberances of your loved one from others who knew them, my suggestion would be that you register the death with one of the remembrance sites, post a link to it on the industry sites, and not read anything else there. BTW, if you think you heard something hurtful here, NEVER visit an aviation forum under a similar circumstance.

Capt Edward P
Posted: Thursday, January 6, 2011 7:32 PM
Joined: 06/01/2011
Posts: 81


Very sad, but it does not surprise me, on my own boats I have been using white lights at low level for many years just for this reason. It is highly likely that at quoted speeds of 25-30kts that he was well crouched down behind the windscreen and not looking up at 30m mastheads. It is therefore sensible for all Captains to ensure a flashing LED torch or even a lower white all-round is visible above the coachroof of S/Y's or in the case of power, anything flashing over the side. Plainly in this situation the one white masthead was not good enough. Cheap LED bulb torches are readily available, that last for days on end, and now the bulbs are coming down hugely, a nice brass light can be obtained if to keep the look nice, and a multitude of LED festoon bulbs can be simply wired together to make ONE GREAT BIG WHITE LIGHT AT DECK LEVEL, for boats that are left dark and unattended. Nuff said. Everyone take note.
Russell
Posted: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 9:06 PM
Joined: 04/09/2010
Posts: 7



Russell
Posted: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 9:06 PM
Joined: 04/09/2010
Posts: 7


We probably will never know what happened to our friend and colleague, Will Black. But, we must learn. These guidelines in no way are indicative of the reason for Will's demise, but should be put in the yacht's procedures. 1. Tenders should be driven at slow speed (less than 5 knots) around anchored yachts. This is especially important at night. Who knows who might be having a midnight swim, for instance. 2. At night, if there are two or less crew in a tender, lifejackets should be worn. This is as with only one or two people in a tender, it is easy to not see an obstacle in the water. At least in the case of a collision, a lifejacket should hold an unconscious person's head above water. 3. Sailing yachts, especially, have to make sure that they are plainly visible to tenders at night. The rules state that the anchor light should be displayed, where it can best be seen. It does not elaborate on who will see it, and boatbuilders always put anchor lights on the top of masts. But they don't have to be there - in an anchorage, lights should be displayed lower down. It is the small boats that are the worst offenders - how many times have you come into anchorages and had to find yachts with searchlights and radar? Also, the small boats often drive their tenders without lights, not realising that the lights are for them to be seen, not for them to see with. Let us remember Will in life, and make sure that his death actually makes a difference to how we, on yachts, go about our business for everyone's safety.
 
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