Friday, May 31, 2013

Internet, Social Media, Could Save Sailor's Lives, Please Repost


Lady Domina

Editor's Note:  On April 24th the EPIRB from the Grain de Soleil was triggered.  Because the signal reportedly went off four times, some speculate the crew may have left the yacht in favor of a liferaft.  The Lady Domina was reported missing in the very same area at the very same time, though she may not have been within 500 miles of the location.  No one really knows where she she went.

You can help by re-posting this article.  The objective is to keep both of these yachts fresh in the mariner's mind for as long as possible.  Fellow mariners are an important part of any search effort.  Wouldn't it be tragic to sail by a life raft or miss a hijacked yacht because we were not looking? 

As baby-boomers retire, many will spend their golden years living on a trawler or a sailboat. This new crop of adventurers uses their knowledge of the internet, social media and high tech communications devices to keep themselves safe and informed. It is the use or non-use of these systems which will make a life or death difference for some.

E.P.I.R.B. Early Innovation

 The first major innovation in sea rescue descended from the aviation Electronic Location Transmitter (ELT). The most recent marine adaptation is called an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (E.P.I.R.B.). TheEPIRB is monitored by an international satellite system called Cospas-Sarsat. It spits out a code with the name of the boat, phone numbers to call, and in some cases the exact G.P.S. location of a missing yacht. EPIRB's are activated by hand or automatically via sea switch when they get wet.  

EPIRB Fires South Of Azores For Grain de Soleil

The EPIRB on a French yacht, the Grain de Soleil, went off April 24th, 2013, about 500 miles Southwest of the Azores. The unit was manually activated 4 times. The activation of an EPIRB guarantees a search will be launched, unlike the mere reporting of an overdue yacht. Rescue crews found part of a splintered boat with colors similar to the Grain de Soleil, though people who know the yacht don't believe the wreckage matches. There is no sign of the three missing crew members, including skipper Guillaume Mousette, and crew Eseulle Etienne and Frank Cousin. 

Grain de Soleil
Still Missing Lady Domina
A second yacht, the Lady Domina, was scheduled to pass within a few miles of the route of theGrain de Soleil at the same time. Unfortunately, the yacht's owner elected not to carry an EPIRB or a short wave radio. Some people go sailing precisely to get away from government intrusion.
Bill Dietrich Photo, Now Famous In Norway
Meanwhile, with the government search for the Grain de Soleil called off on April 28th, 2013,worried relatives are using social media to alert ships and boats across the globe to watch for both the Grain de Soleil and the Lady Domina. Relatives have set up a face book page for the Grain de Soleil.   Though the page is in French, modern translation tools like Google Translate impart the basics of conversations.  
The family of the missing French Sailors want you to have this message:
What You Can Do In The Search Effort
What you can do to support us:

1) Look for them if you are out there sailing (contact us for 
latest position information)
2) Like this page
3) Share this page
4) Talk to as many people as possible to increase awareness and
 link them to this page
5) Donate money even if it is a small amount through the 
Nautical Centre in Lorient via (only in French): 
6) Continue reading to find out more about the details

Lady Domina

The disappearance of Lady Domina is making it's way onto web pages and into sailing forums.  The family has been good about getting the message into the Norwegian press since the boat's owner and builder, Ovyn Slettvold, is from Norway.   Still missing are captain Ovyin Slettvold, Anders Mosteid, Stian Abrahamsen, Brian Fritzner and Katy Audrey Lee.
From Katey Audrey Lee's Face Book Page

Brian Fritzner is a Danish Citizen
Now "Wanted-Missing" by Interpol

Brian Fritzner is a Danish Citizen
Now "Wanted-Missing" by Interpol



Respond in confidence to:

Please place "Lady Domina" in subject line

Internet Range Extenders Help Pass The Word
Everyone hopes the exhausted crews of both yachts return to port, perhaps unaware a search has been launched.  If so, their fellow "yachties" may be the first to advise the skippers about the millions spent in search efforts, the fund raising parties for private searches, and the frantic families.
Crews were not always as informed about missing yachts through the internet just a few years ago.  It was difficult to log onto the net while at anchor. Wireless internet signals are line of sight signals, traveling in most cases only a few hundred yards. However, with the improvement of high tech range extenders, crew are able to stay connected, sometimes three miles away from hot spots.  The Ubiquity Bullet is one of the most popular units on the market.  The initial set-up can be difficult, but you can find companies to do that part for you.
Ubiquiti Titanium Bullet
The Ubiquiti is a device people love or they hate.  The biggest complaint is about the company which does not offer tech support to non-professional installers.  Some of the older units failed when they got to hot or by water intrusion.  When this unit works, it has a reputation of being very effective.  New installation techniques may extend life by keeping the unit dry, out of the sun and off of the mast.

Bill Dietrich has used various methods to connect to the internet.  By chance, Dietrich says he was using a regular wi-fi adapter with a hot spot at close range when he uploaded the only known photo of the Lady Domina.  Dietrich is the author of Retire Onto A Sailboat,

Dietrich takes a lot of photos of yachts he finds interesting.  With the yacht overdue, Norwegian newspapers contacted Dietrich.  They had run a sophisticated internet search to find the photo. Dietrich's photo became famous, even though better photographs have been located since then. 
Bill Dietrich from the yacht Magnolia

Satellite Phones One Key To Fast Rescue
Neither the Grain de Soleil nor the Lady Domina used the most useful and high tech tool available to a sailor. A few years ago, a satellite telephone was prohibitive in price. Today, a satellite phone can be purchased for under $1,000. 
While satellite phones are not cheap, they are lifesavers. When used in conjunction with a G.P.S., the sailor adrift can provide rescuers an exact description of location and nature of his emergency. Unlike cell phones, which use towers, sat phones connect directly to low-flying satellites. You don't need to duck. They are not that low! Since there are not many cell towers in remote regions of the ocean, cell phones are useless.  
Although the price of satellite telephones are within the reach of nearly every sailor, the data and voice plans for these phones remain prohibitive. You can spend $7.00 per gigabyte and well over a buck a minute for voice calls. They have cell plans in the $3,200 per month range if you want them.  With few competitors, internet access through satellite modems may only be for the rich, and the odd sailor willing to pay any price to get out of a life raft floating around the ocean.

The Globalstar Spot Messenger can be had for quite a bargain.  It is not designed as a satellite phone.  Instead, it is designed as an emergency rescue and tracking device.  It sells for less than $120 U.S.  The messenger is especially helpful for emergency and S.O.S. calls.  The units are waterproof and they float!

Yacht Tracking Provides Early Alert, Location
There is one other high tech option which sailors use to summon help or alert family about delays. By using a satellite phone or satellite connection, a tracking device can be placed on a boat so family and fans can watch the adventurer bob slowly across the ocean. These devices are automatic, updating every hour.  However, unless the crew remembers to grab the unit from it's mounting place during an abandon ship, at best the unit will alert for no contact, providing search crews a place to start looking. 
Some yachts are including a Yellowbrick tracking device in their budget.  A tracking device helps in the event of an emergency.   It is also a great tool to keep family advised of a yacht's progress.
Tracking devices are popular in races. For example, thePacific Cup Race from San Francisco to Oahu, Hawaii, the Rolex Sydney-Hobart Race from Sydney, Australia to Hobart, Tasmania and the Transpac Race from Las Angeles, California to Honolulu, Hawaii. The latter two races resulted in the tragic loss of yachts and lives that might have been saved using modern technology not available to racers years ago.  The Yellowbrick Tracker has been used on several of these races.
If you see either the Grain de Soleil or the Lady Domina, or any of the crew, please report it immediately.  Awareness may be the best friend the missing sailors have at this point.  Please repost, tweet and otherwise help publicise this article.  You can copy the url for this web page or copy the technorati article link immediately below.  Both will get us to the same place, which is to keep this story alive until the missing yachts are found and the sailors returned to their families safely.


Do You Have A Tip For Us?  Please Write  Place Lady Domina in the subject bar.

Article first published as Ahoy! Internet, Social Help in Search for Lost Ships at Sea on Technorati.  Alterations completed with additional information 6-1-13.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

U.S. Travel Restrictions Are Still In Place!

Many people are under the impression travel to Cuba is perfectly legal.  Well, yes, it is perfectly legal, if you have a travel license.  If you don't have a license, then you could be facing severe civil and criminal fines.  Yacht owners who visit Cuba should also be aware of the travel restrictions.  Otherwise, the U.S. Treasury Department might take an interest in seizing their yacht.


Please be aware, Cuban travel permits are not guaranteed.  If you are a U.S. citizen, you must obtain a permit to travel to Cuba.  Permanent residents may be placing the renewal of their residency at risk if they get caught traveling without a permit.

OFAC-Authorized Travel

ISSUED: July 25, 2011

SUBJECT: Travel to Cuba and People-to-People Groups

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) is aware of misstatements in the media suggesting U.S. foreign policy allows unrestricted travel to Cuba.  Although OFAC amended the Cuban Assets Control Regulations, 31 C.F.R. Part 515 in January 2011 to expand licensing of travel to Cuba for specific purposes, the amended Regulations still contain significant travel restrictions.

OFAC now licenses to organizations that sponsor and organize educational exchange programs.  The program must promote contact with the Cuban people (“People-to-People Groups”).  The strict requirements set forth in section 515.565(b)(2) of the Regulations and OFAC’s licensing guidelines must be met.  The OFAC Comprehensive Guidelines for License Applications to Engage in Travel-Related Transactions Involving Cuba are available HERE.  Please check the regulations to insure your proposed trip to Cuba could be authorized under this or any other travel license category.


As stated in the Application Guidelines, OFAC only licenses People-to-People Groups that certify all participants will have a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities.  They must certify those activities will result in meaningful interaction between the travelers and individuals in Cuba. Authorized activities by People-to-People Groups are not “tourist activities” under the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000.  The Act prohibits OFAC from licensing travel-related transactions for tourist activities.

A People-toPeople Group must use an OFAC-authorized Travel Service Provider if they use outside assistance for travel.  Travel agents and tour operators in the United States must hold an OFAC Travel Service Provider authorization in order to organize trips, collect funds, make travel arrangements, or engage in any other Cuba travel-related transactions for People-to-People Groups.

Authorized travelers to Cuba are subject to daily spending limits and are prohibited from bringing any Cuban “souvenirs” or other goods into the United States.  The exception is for informational materials.

Civil and criminal penalties may result from a violation of the Regulations.
For additional information about OFAC sanctions involving Cuba, you may contact:

U.S. Department of the Treasury 
Washington, D.C. 202/622-2490 
Miami, FL 786/845-2828 (Travel Service Providers)

The Perfect Day of Sailing, Caribbean Adventure

This is an extremely well done video depicting in the author's words, 'the Perfect Day of Sailing".  We, at Sailing Savoir Faire think it is about as close as one can come to the perfect video depicting the fantasy and fun of blazing through the water using the power of the wind.

Wow, beautiful seas, nice boat, spectacular women.  Caribbean sailing at it's best!

Send Us Your Heavy Weather Sailing Videos

We Will Put 'Em Here!

Do you have a favorite yachting video? Maybe it is funny, maybe it is adventurous or exciting.  Just send it to us, we will edit it, if it needs it, and post it here for you!

Send to or put it in our drop box!


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Monday, May 27, 2013

Down to Davey Jone's Locker

The end of a yacht is always a sad moment.  It represents someone's dreams.  Usually, it also represents a fair amount of cash that might have been better left in the bank.

This yacht looks like it could end the life of several more yachts if the location of her sinking is not marked.  While people on shore jeer, they cannot know the pain her passing will bring.

Southern Cross, More Yacht Rescues

Tough times at sea. Every sailor has had his great days, eventually followed by not so great days.  The following are some video stories of yachts whose owners were having tough days.

Yacht safety and the cruising lifestyle is an art.  Sure, there are rules of the road to follow, but once you are out in the wild blue, the rules fade a bit.  Choices must be made, risks taken and eventually the benefits and consequences of the journey earned or paid.

Seven Attempts To Board Southern Cross

Lying Off Of Pitcarin Island

I have wanted to visit Pitcarin Island since I was a little kid. Probably the first thing that attracted me to the Mutiny on the Bounty story was the Rogers and Hammerstein Music.  It surprised my mother, who didn't think I was a fan of classical music.  She was right.  But there is something about the music which embodied all of my dreams of escaping a life that maybe wasn't exactly perfect.  

The Mutiny on the Bounty holds for me, incredible fascination. Few of us realize the brutality used centuries ago as various armies combed the new world looking for riches.  Still, I often wondered what could have compelled Fletcher Christian to give up his wealthy position in society and strike against Captain Bligh and the Crown.

The mission of the Bounty was inherently evil from my thinking.  They were looking for a cheap way to feed slaves.  Breadfruit was seen as nutritional and cheap to grow.  Why should we be surprised a mission of such evil nature was doomed to failure by powers greater than ourselves?

England was especially brutal in the use of the cat-o-nine tails in compelling a reluctant crew to follow orders.    A sailor's life was tough, underpaid, full of risk, a thankless job, but most sailors probably would not have wanted it any other way.  Well, except the crew of the Bounty.

Alas, one day, I hope to venture to the Pacific side to see this lost island for myself. However, I hope I never have to take on a bucking yacht from a dingy like the Southern Cross!  Shucks, a yacht like that is way out of my price range anyway!

You can watch the original movie, which I trimmed Here.

You can listen to the soundtrack Here.



Sunday, May 26, 2013

More Heavy Weather Sailing

It is exciting, it is full of peril, it breaks equipment and sometimes breaks people. The rush from heavy weather sailing is like no other. All of your senses are in tune, you feel the cold air whipping at your gear, the water looking for a path down the front, making the cold that much worse.

If you don't know what you are doing in heavy weather you are likely to find yourself in the water, the foundation of your world sinking, and with a sickening realization about how much trouble you are in. It is not the money, or the rules. It is your life on the line.

There is nothing like a sailboat for heavy weather conditions. If the craft is built for open ocean cruising, the rig is fresh and the sails are strong, not much will take a sailboat down. Even if she flips she will come back up, shattered but still floating.

One of the worst mistakes a sailor can make is to step down to a life raft when he has a firm foundation under his feet.

Bare poles, storm jib only, running down wind. Your stomach turns with each bob, up, down, side to side, the boat rolls, and the waves mostly follow.

Send us your heavy weather sailing videos and we will post them here!

Send to:




More Photographs 'n Information About the Missing Lady Domina

SV Lady Domina, a home-built 75 foot motor sailor, disappeared after leaving the Island of St. Martin on March 31st, 2013.  The yacht was reportedly on it's way to Norway via the Azores.

Photo by Auto k. Blix Hulbak
of sv Lady Domina

The owner and builder of the boat, Øyvind Slettvold had attempted to start a dry-dock service in Martinique.  After spending a wheel barrow of money, including dealing with corrupt government officials, he finally gave up and had the drydock moved to Dominica, where he encountered the same problems.  Tired of the graft and corruption, Slettvold decided to sail his 75 foot yacht, Lady Domina, home to Norway.  

The Caribbean is no longer the place it used to be years ago.  It has been "discovered" in part by bare-boat cruisers who fly into various island destination from the madness of workaday life in cities the world over.  Thousands of people who retired onto a yacht have made the Caribbean either their home or their frequent destination.  It is a tight knit community.  Everyone knows everyone, well almost.

People have posed the question, "then why didn't someone see the Lady Domina weigh anchor and make her way out of Caribbean waters?  Why have there been no sightings of the yacht anywhere along her intended 2,200 k.m. course?

Actually, there was one supposed encounter.  The owner of a yacht who was familiar with Lady Domina overheard one side of a conversation.  The following post was placed on the Cruisers Forum, a popular internet information site:

"We heard a one sided VHF conversation between US Coast Guard, Puerto Rico and Lady Domina broadcast 3rd May as we were passaging along the Puerto Rico coast.  It seemed Lady Domina was requesting weather information only, certainly not assistance. Their position we presumed was most probably lust north of Puerto Rico. Our interest was piqued because we knew of the boat, her owner and one crew member from our time in Hartman Bay, Grenada."

Photo by Auto k. Blix Hulbak
taken of stern of sv Lady Domina

The people were able to pinpoint a rough location for Lady Domina because VHF radios have a short transmission range.  It is quite normal to hear one side of a VHF conversation when one of the parties is beyond reception range.  Slettvold reportedly purchased a hand held VHF radio along with a hand held GPS shortly before his departure.

Yet, a sighting of the yacht within 3 miles of Puerto Rico places the Lady Domina far off course for a trip to the Azores from Martinique.  While the trip is certainly possible, no one in the crew had mentioned sailing to Puerto Rico first. According to later posts on the cruisers board, the registration number of the Lady Domina heard by the yacht was different from the registration number of Slettvold's Lady Domina.  The conclusion is, there must be two Lady Dominas.

Therein lies the difficulty.  Lady Domina translates to Dominance Lady.  In fact, an internet search for Lady Domina reveals references to adult internet sites and all that is entailed in the dominance and submission under-world.  While many sailors may feel they are under the spell of a dominatrix in the form of a yacht, few people would have the courage to name their yacht Dominance Lady in any language.

Part of the sailing life is the carefree ability to go anywhere you like, limited only by wind and weather.  It is not unheard of for sailors to change course for an unannounced destination without telling anyone about their new plans.  Worried relatives signal the alarm and the bashful sailors get a stern talking to by authorities who launched a search party for them.  That could easily be the fate of the Lady Domina, but she had passengers on board who would want to advise friends and relatives of a course change.  No one has heard a word.  

Slettvold has a reputation as an experienced sailor who insists his crew tow the line while at sea.  On a prior voyage, he required his crew to stick exactly to course.  Having done an amazing job building Lady Domina, Slettvold also has the experience and ability to repair about anything.  People who know the yacht say the below-deck cabins had been turned into a large repair shop with multiple tools and repair equipment.

Guillaume Mousette, Esteulle Etienne and Frank Cousin

Captain and Crew of the Grain de Soleil

Those repairs may have been needed based upon the distress call put out by another yacht that was near the anticipated course of Lady Domina.  The yacht, the Grain de Soleil, was battling heavy seas.  A faint EPIRB signal was picked up by authorities about 6oo miles south of the Azores.  Because the EPIRB was set off, a search and rescue effort was mounted.  The hulk of a boat with a color similar to the Grain Soleil was found, though rescuers don't believe it is the French yacht.  It certainly was not the Lady Domina, for she had a black hull whereas the shredded remnants found floating had a green or turquoise hull.

So what happened to the sv Lady Domina?  She is now over 60 days out with no sighting of the yacht.  Most sailors suspect she will show up any day now, the crew with a sheepish grin on their faces for not notifying people of their course change.  Others say she may still be in the Caribbean, having delayed departure.  Until more information comes to fore, the Dominance Lady will be shrouded in mystery.

(59), Dane Brian Fritzner (46) and English Katie Lee (34).

Norwegian Anders Mosteid (27) Stian Abrahamsen (29) skipper and owner of the boat, Øyvind Slettvold (59), Dane Brian Fritzner (46) and English Katie Lee (34).


Best Of Heavy Weather Sailing


Some avoid heavy weather sailing.  Others seek it out.  It is full of risk, adventure, a life experience if you make it through.

As a general rule, most sailors avoid heavy weather.  They know the cost wear and tear on equipment, the placing of lives at risk, the ability to sit it out in a safe port, all are factors to be considered.

Yet mother nature is not always predictable.  Sometimes she pitches a fit when everyone thought she was only going to bless sailors with rays of sun and fair winds.


Nothing makes heavy weather sailing completely safe.  Yet, preparation is obviously a key ingredient to getting through tough times at sea.  Preparing for the worst case scenario often is what avoids falling into it.

Where Is sv lady Domina?


Lady Domina From Family Friend

A motor-sailor with a high-tech top has vanished into the Atlantic ocean after departing Marigot Bay on the Northeast Caribbean island of St. Martin.  The yacht, the Lady Domina, was heading for the Azores on March 31st, 2013, to pick up a crew member.  From there, the yacht was scheduled to motor to Norway.

The internet plays an important role in the search for wayward yachts.  Using high-tech devices, sailors have learned how to extend the range of wireless internet signals.  News of a missing yacht travels quickly in sailing circles aided by shortwave radios.  Sailors the world over watch for missing craft which sometimes show up in port, the captain unaware he has been reported missing.

The internet also provides a sense of intrigue about the Lady Domina.  Here is a posting seeking crew from 2011:
 "Female Crew wanted for atventure trip in the carebbean With ,75" sailboat This is not a race , but adventure, The point of this trip is not to make money on the ship,but too enjoy,and explore islands and met new people and cultures . no sailing experiense needed. I am from norway 183/85 blond 43 easy going ,likes the good things in life."

Often a yacht is found in places far from the captain's stated course.  This happens when bad weather or mechanical failure force a course change, and sometimes when the captain changes his destination at the last minute without advising family or friends.

Tore Christiansen, a Norwegian fluent in English, learned of the missing yacht from a Norwegian sailing internet bulletin board.
"Is there any of you who know Lady Domina or Slettvold and can help with some information? How the boat is equipped?" the poster asked in Norwegian.
 Christiansen began making inquiries on the English-language sailing site the Cruisers Forum and other web sites.  Meanwhile, Bill Dietrich, who authored  Retire Onto A Sailboat, had by chance, taken the only known photograph of Lady Domina.  Dietrich was preparing for his "vacation" from living on a sailboat when a Norwegian newspaper asked permission to use the photograph.


Bill Dietrich Photograph
Reportedly, the Lady Domina had been under restoration by expert welder, Norwegian sailor Øyvind Slettvold who built her and sailed her throughout the Caribbean for the past 12  years.  According to Christiansen, the Lady Domina didn't have a main sail though she did have one or two small jib sails in front.  The skipper planned to motor all the way to Norway using his 220 hp diesel engine.

Lady Domina Looking Forward

New technology makes finding missing yachts much easier.  An Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) alerts search crews to a yacht's location by satellite.  Many sailors carry a satellite telephone not limited by cell areas, since these units are now affordable.  While a sailor can grab these items at the last minute, they were reportedly not part of the equipment on board.

However, the Lady Domina had a commercial-grade black life-raft lashed to the aft rail in a white canister, plus a handled VHF radio and a hand-held GPS.  She also appears to have modern navigation equipment including radar.
2009 Message From Kati Lee 
Regarding Attack Against 
Her Parent's Yacht

Venezuela, 10 miles from Puerto Santos - Attack on British Yacht

By Sue Richards — last modified Jan 21, 2009 08:54 PM
Published: 2009-01-21 20:54:19
Topics: Piracy Reports 2008
Countries: Venezuela 
My parents, Peter and Betty Lee, were attacked on their yacht "Raven Eye" after leaving Puerto Santos on the 5th July 2008.
A pirogue with 6 men aboard approached the boat (whilst they were underway). One man was in military uniform. Peter proceeded to slam and try to sink the boat but shots were fired.
The men boarded "Raven Eye", shooting and stabbing the family dog. They tied Peter on deck with a gun pointing at him and went down below and held Mrs Lee with 2 guns pointing at her face. They took US$300, a laptop computer, tool boxes, the SSB radio, outboard motor, ripped the microphones from the VHF, ripped the compass out, tried to take the radar and forward looking sonar but they were fixed too well, and left the boat a complete mess. They also tried to take Mrs Lee's wedding ring, but she could not get it off and in the process cut her hand severely.
After the attack my parents had no means of communication at all so Peter took the decision to get out of Venezuelan waters to Trinidad.
The case is now in the hands of the authorities and the British Commission.
If anyone has any advice or know of people we can contact, we would be grateful.
Katie Lee
S/V Lady Domina

Facebook provides a last, perhaps tell-tale glimpse, of the future of Lady Domina. Crew member Kati Audery Lee:
" On my way, there may be trouble ahead, there may be moonlight and love and romance, so let's face the music and dance". Hopefully we'll be in the Azores in 3 weeks."
With Lady Domina now 60 days over-due, ships are keeping a close watch for her.  By chance, two other sailboats, Grain de Soleil and Team 2 Choc were reported missing in the same area where Lady Domina should be at the same time  The first of these boats set off it's EPIRB on April 28th, 2013, while battling heavy seas.  The three man crew remains missing.  The Team 2 Choc was located, likely by watchful sailors, when the boat arrived in the Azores piloted by an exhausted single handed sailor.

Meanwhile, Interpol, has issued a Wanted-Missing notice for Danish crew member, Brian Fritzner.


Brian Fritzner

The five member crew aboard Lady Domina are Norwegian Anders Mosteid (27) Stian Abrahamsen (29) skipper and owner of the boat, Øyvind Slettvold (59), Dane Brian Fritzner (46) and English Katie Lee (34).

At this point, no one really knows what happened to Lady Domina and the five souls on board. Some say she did not carry adequate fuel for the 2,200 nautical mile trip and is floating around the Atlantic. Others speculate fuel stores were adequate, but the trip could easily take 40 to 60 days depending upon weather, currents and other things Mother-Nature. 

Portuguese Search Party Located Wreckage
The Color Is Not Close To The
Black Hull Of Lady Domina


S/Y Lady Domina
May 1, 2013

Subject: Distress Relay Alert / Communications Search

All Ships in the area of Atlantic Ocean   – St. Martin to the Azores

There has been no communications with S/Y Lady Domina after its departure from St. Martin on April 1st.

Position: Between St. Martin and the Azores

Boat description:  75 foot sailing yacht, with dark blue/black hull, white strip, red bottom.

There are 5 people on board.

Assistance Required:  Communication Search on VHF and Sharp Look Out.  Any information regarding the route and estimate of arrival to the Azores.

Instructions to Ships: – Ships enroute are requested to help keep a sharp look out and report any sightings to MRCC DELGADA
                                         – Ships with other vital information about the distressed vessels situation are invited to inform this rescue centre ASAP.
                                         – Ships enroute are requested to do communications search on VHF on a regular basis.
TEL: +351 296 281 777
Fax: +351 296 205 239

Lady Domina Looking Aft

Adding to the intrigue is a report of a one-sided conversation from "Blue Dolphin":

  Boat "Blue Dolphin" entered this post on Cruisers Forum:

We overheard a one sided VHF conversation between the U.S. Coast Guard, Puerto Ricoand Lady Domina broadcast 3rd May as we were passaging along the Puerto Rico coast.
It seemed Lady Domina was Requesting weather information only, certainly not assistance. Their position we Presumed was most probably lust north of Puerto Rico.Our interest was piqued Because We knew of the boat, here owner and one crewmember from our time in Hartman Bay, Grenada . We suggest any interested party contact the U.S. Coast Guard Puerto Rico two see if they may know anything further.
They told you that they knew his boat and one of the men from a business in Grenada earlier.
Do not know about Even Vinge has hoert something from the Coast Guard in Puerto Rico yet?

On the one hand, the name "Lady Domina" is very distinct, unlike some yacht names.  On the other hand, the report indicates the registration number of the yacht does not match the registration number of the missing Lady Domina.

Photos of Debris Found Near Floating Yacht Hulk

The partial hulk of an upturned boat found during the search for the Grain de Soleil does not resemble the black hull of the Lady Domina.  The majority of the yachting community remains optimistic Lady Domina will turn up soon, with crew unharmed. Such is the lifestyle of the cruising community. In the event someone spots the yacht, has asked to be immediately notified.