Thursday, July 11, 2013

Nina, Nemeth, What Went Wrong? Page 11

Page 1 Search Suspended

Page 2  The Story
Page 3  About the Nina
Page 4  Dyche Family Page
Page 5  Evi Nemeth
Page 6  Matt Wootton
Page 7  Kyle Jackson
Page 8  Danielle Wright
Page 9  RCCNZ 
Page 10 To the Families and Friends

Page 11  What Went Wrong With The Nina?

Page 12  Last Message From Nina Crew
Page 13  Family of Nina Crew Appeal For Search Funds
Page 14  Family Anxious For Search To Begin
Page 15  RCCNZ Less Than Cooperative in New Nina Search
Page 16  Third Day of Nina Search, Funds Needed 
Page 17  New Zealand Responds
Page 18  Equusearch Seeks Satellite Specialist
Page 19  A New Generation of Cooperation
Page 20  Wild Speculation No Help
Page 21  Sailboat Washes Up On Beach
Page 22  Nina Fund
Page 23  Nina Makes Prime Time
Page 24  Kyle Jackson, Hiya Mom!

Page 25  U.S. Coast Guard Endangers Lives of Nina 7
Page 26  Equusearch, Nina Families, Ask For Help
Page 27  Apathy From US Officials
Page 28  Families Seek More Funding
Page 29  Standing Up To Uncle Sam
Page 30  Possible New Location of Nina
Page 31  Reason For Hope Rescue After 76 Days At Sea
Page 32  Breaking News Delayed, TES Profile
Page 33  Positive Despite The Negatives
Page 34  Tomnod Saves Lives
Page 35  Holding
Page 36  Tasman Takes Two
Page 37  91 Days Lost At Sea
Page 38  Your Calls Needed



There is some speculation the Nina had a catastrophic failure which forced her to sink rapidly.  It is important to remember, if the authorities knew what went wrong, they would tell us.  They have remained silent on the matter, so it is fair to presume their suspicion is nothing more than an educated guess.  

They have not found a debris field, they have not found flotsam, they have not heard a distress signal.  They have no first hand account of any problem with the yacht.  No one knows.

Evi Nemeth, The Register

At this point, no one knows if anything went wrong on the yacht at all from a catastrophic point of view.   It could be, the new engine failed and the reconditioned sails blew out.   While such a condition leads to a miserable existence for awhile, that condition alone will not cause loss of life.  The yacht was full of provisions.  It is likely floating in the vast Tasman Sea.  In a less optimistic view, it could be the crew is floating in a life raft in the vast Tasman Sea.

David Dyche (Laura McDermott Palm Beach Post)

  I am including here what some people think might have gone wrong as a way of being thorough.  While people can speculate, the speculation does not have any bearing on what happened.  When the sailors return to port, they will tell us.

 I believe in being optimistic.  If I was bobbing up and down in a life raft, I would want people to remain optimistic for me.

Rescue Coordination Center New Zealand says:

The leader of Friday's search efforts, Neville Blakemore of New Zealand Rescue Coordination Centre, said it's now logical to assume the 70-foot (21-meter) boat sank in a storm but added that it's possible some crew members survived either in the life raft that was aboard or by making land.

Plastimo Transocean 8 Man Life Raft


Megan Jackson on RCC NZ

Russ Rimmington Report:

Russ Rimmington, (New Zealand Herald)

According to Rimmington, the yacht may have had structural problems in her hull.  She had not been out of the water for three years while sitting in port in Whangerei, New Zealand, Rimmington, a local sailor claims.  

Rimmington claims the Nina wooden hull had become "hogged" or warped, with the middle of the hull bending upwards.  This occurs when the center is more buoyant than the bow and the stern.  With excess weight on the ends, a hogged yacht begins the slow process of warping.  If left untreated, the condition may cause the hull to fail when placed under heavy stress.  The compromised hull together with the installation of a new engine may have been more than the yacht could bear in heavy seas.

Photo courtesy of Wikpedia.  The first photo is an example of sagging.  The second photo is an example of hogging.  The diagrams are exaggerated to illustrate the concepts.


Latitude 38 states:  

From Latitude 38

(Regarding a catastrophic disaster,) "the first thing that occurs to me is that there was still something wrong with the base of the foremast, and that under the tremendous compression of heavy weather, it opened up the garboards. That would sink the boat in a hurry. The second thought is that maybe one of the deformed turnbuckles had failed, causing the big aluminum main mast to fall, fill with water and, still attached to the boat, ram a big hole in the hull. Or the butt could smash a large hole in the hull. A distant third possibility is that some of the fiberglass sheathing no longer adhered to the hull and led to some kind of hull failure."

RCCNZ States:

"If it [locator beacon] had [been on] we'd know where they were within 10 to 15 minutes."

I would like to remind the RCCNZ the Grain de Soleil had a perfectly good EPIRB.  They were unable to find the boat, however, after the EPIRB stopped transmitting.  Having a water activated EPIRB would not necessarily result in an immediate find. The unit has to function, as well.  it's batteries have to be charged.  When a boats sink, the signal is lost.  Hence, if the crew did not have time to move the EPIRB to the life raft then having a locater beacon "turned on" would not have done much for anyone.

I know the RCCNZ did a great job in their search.  However, I think the EPIRB statement is callous.

Cloudsail on the Cruisers forum says it well:

"Thanks for keeping this thread open so experienced sailors can fill in some gaps in NiƱa's unfinished story. A well-tested ship, excellent crew, bad but survivable weather, scant and falliblecommunications technology all give reason for hope. Everyone feels powerless on some level which might be why you get "monday-morning quarterbacks" and those of us wishing modern technology was bigger than the sea. But when Iridium, Spot, EPIRB fail to give us answers or a direct connection to loved ones, we can still pray for God's comfort and guidance."

Tragedy Brings Change

John Rousmaniere, who sailed in the fatal Fastnet race said, 

"Few hopes are more universal than the one that a tragedy will have a positive outcome, no matter how small."

The fact is, everything about cruising is safer today because of the 1979 Fastnet race and the 1989 Sydney Hobart race in which sailors lost their lives and boats were sunk.  A great deal was learned about heavy weather tactics, crew safety and the construction of more comfortable, hence to some degree, safer, safety gear, presuming if the gear is comfortable the crew works better and is more likely to be wearing it during time of crisis.

1979 Fastnet Race


1998 Sydney Hobart Race

Rousmaniere continues:

 As for personal safety gear, it is difficult to overstate how much it has been improved over the past 20 years. Safety harnesses are stronger, inflatable life jackets are easier to wear and more reliable, and crew-overboard rescue devices are more effective.

From Richard Bennett's Sydney Hobart Race 1989

Life rafts have been improved with the addition of ballast bags, although as the 1998 Sydney-Hobart experience showed, life rafts still must be handled with care and respect for their vulnerability as a vessel of last resort. And sailors today know much more about safety gear and skills, thanks to safety-at-sea seminars and other educational programs.

From Richard Bennett's 1989 Sydney Hobart Race

The Authorities are getting a little tougher on unsafe boats, as well. Or, perhaps, that is unsafe sailors. While The Northern Advocate says New Zealand authorities won't allow American sailor Sean D'Epagnier to leave until he repairs his mast light a rudder, D'Epagnier has been the subject of a missing sailor search already. He didn't even know people were looking for him!


"The family were largely kept in the dark about his travel plans from the start and were only told of his intention to voyage around New Zealand when he "popped up" in American Samoa after sailing there from California, they said." (

D'Epagnier arrived on his sailboat in New Zealand in November of 2012.  Despite an expired Visa, authorities will not grant the sailor leave to leave.

Monday Morning Musings

A lot of people were worried about this sailor.  Yet, he turned up in good spirits and even wondering what all the hub bub was about.  While the Nina crew certainly must know the search is on, many think they will emerge from this adventure full of tales to tell.  It is too soon to give up the hope.  

Grave concern for the Nina is warranted, but action is what these sailors need most of all.  Their best chance is to keep this story in front of the public for as long as possible.  Certainly, local sailors will be watching should they attempt to cross the terrible Tasman.  Yet, rescue stories of those who survived long battles with the sea are full of an ocean of people that could have ended their journey sooner, had they been alert.

To Page 1


No comments:

Post a Comment

Tell us what you think! Everyone has a point of view and yours counts!