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Utopia IV sinks... a fuel tanker???

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by Pascal, Dec 25, 2021.

  1. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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  2. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Pictures from various websites...

    B59BF1EE-FDA6-4805-9760-39996639202B.jpeg 65BB730E-E898-4E52-9EE5-6CD4B48C8853.jpeg
  3. C team

    C team Senior Member

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    WOW! Nobody on watch while using autopilot???
  4. jsschieff

    jsschieff Senior Member

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    I read elsewhere that Utopia was barreling along at 20+ knots in near darkness when it rammed the ship.
  5. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    20kts in open waters north of Nassau is no problem. That tanker should have popped up on radar like a flare... also these boats are always well lit with flood lights and visible miles away. And hard to believe a boat that size doesn’t have FLIR...

    Either whoever was on watch left his post for whatever reason or maybe was having a Washington Ferry moment :)
  6. hat4349

    hat4349 Senior Member

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    I would think the tanker would also have FLIR and should have seen the yacht approaching. I think there is blame on both boat watches. I know the yacht did the ramming but the tanker seems to have done nothing to avoid it or warn the yacht.
  7. Slimshady

    Slimshady Senior Member

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    This is going to cause major problems for fuel delivery in Bahamas. These aren't regular fueling barges that can be purchased off the lot. We'd have shortages before tropic sank, now it's going to get bad.
  8. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    True. I wonder how many of these are used between Nassau and the family island.

    interestingly neither the Guardian or the Tribune has reported the accident.
  9. Slimshady

    Slimshady Senior Member

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    I believe there are two or three vessels total. Tropic was a big one. They have a very long hose that a tender pulls onshore to refill the marina tanks. Regular ships cannot get into these small and shallow spots. Long island is first good fuel coming into Bahamas, so when they run out what happens to all the vessels that can't make it further north? All the cars on land? Hope they find a solution quickly.
  10. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I wonder if Utopia is shallow enough to replace the fuel barge?
    Adopo and rtrafford like this.
  11. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    I asked here at SCYC if that was the same boat which brought fuel here and apparently it isn’t. They don’t expect issues.
  12. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    They will when their boat has to start covering the gaps in service.
  13. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Probably...
  14. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    The tanker was rear ended by Utopia IV. It was being overtaken, so it's Utopia IV's fault.
  15. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    A lil late to da party my friend.
    Yes, That is my first thought.
    However, as observed in past court cases, The guy getting run-over (sunk here) may have some blame.

    Does NTSB get invited to these little sinkings?
  16. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    I don’t think they will be involved since the tanker was Belize flagged and it happened in Bahamian waters. Utopia is US flagged but as a recreational vessel I doubt the Investigation will go beyond the Bahamas port authority.

    as I said earlier I doubt they are going to release the vessel anytime soon
  17. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I wouldn't..
  18. HTMO9

    HTMO9 Senior Member

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    I know that in face of God and in court, everything is possible but giving the captain / crew of this poor little tanker a share of the blame is rediculous!

    It is like blaming the car driver, whose car was hit from the rear on the highway (rear-end collision !), for not observing his rear mirror closely enough and giving way to the approaching car (accident cause).

    According the international laws of the seas, hitting annother ship in motion between the 8 o'clock and the 4 o'clock sector (means basically behind the 3-9 line) of the longitudinal axis, is cleary a rear-end collision and no right of way can be claimed, period!

    And the 8 o'clock to the 4 o'clock sector is where 90 % of the wheelhouses of commercial ships have no loookout capability. Some special ships like Tug boats or large work boats like offshore vessels or icebreakers may have wheelhouses with 360 degrees field of view but the average merchant vessel definately not.

    Speeding at night at 20 Kts under AP and not using all sensors available, like RADAR, FLIR and ECDIS / AIS, is not only stupid, it is grossly negligent. And the yacht is equipped with all of this. And even more, if there was only one pair of eyes on watch on the bridge.

    If the point of the collision was in Bahamian waters, the case will be held at an Bahamian court. If this accident happened in international waters, this case (if there will be one) will be held at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, as a commercial ship was involved. This UN body is located since 1996 in Hamburg, Germany. The NTSB will absolutely have no shares in this proceedings.

    I found it very strange of the Bahamian authorities to say that there is no pollution, as all cargo was lighter than seawater and would evaporate by itself. IMO, gasoline fuel and diesel fuel in the water is definately pollution. For example, 1 litre of diesel fuel will contaminate 1 Million litres of water.

    Sorry but the former commercial captain could not resist.
  19. Rerm

    Rerm New Member

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    thoughts?!?
  20. CTdave

    CTdave Senior Member

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    Who is the current Captain on UtopiaIV? Just wondering if it’s the same one who grounded the yacht here in Greenwich, CT last year.