11 metre cat flips in rough seas, 3 dead.

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Squidly-Diddly, Jul 11, 2019 at 10:51 PM.

  1. Squidly-Diddly
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    Squidly-Diddly Senior Member

  2. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Strong off-shore wind, I wonder why they didn't hug the coastline.
  3. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Saw some pictures on another website. They had the centerboards down and were apparently sailing in 25-30 knot winds and very rough seas. Sad story.
    guzzis3 likes this.
  4. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Sounded like they were doing a coastal "hop", the offshore wind would have been stronger away from land, and the seas relatively calm inshore.
  5. fastsailing
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    fastsailing Junior Member

    If it happened during daytime, meaning the prevailing wind was offshore wind, not the case of land breeze during the night time, the closer the shore line you are, the more gusty the wind is due to 2 factors, variable temperature of the landmass and variable topography of the land the wind is blowing over. To avoid those gusts, you must sail further offshore. To avoid sea state caused by that wind, you must sail further inshore. They apparently opined the former was more important for a catamaran.

    "the offshore wind would have been stronger away from land"
    Yes, and steady strong wind should have been easily taking care of by reefing. Not the same for gusts, if you want to make good average speed too.

  6. guzzis3
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    guzzis3 Senior Member

    First thing to say is we don't know anything. Anyone can buy and sail a cat in australia with just a basic motorboat licence, or they could have been experienced sailors who encountered something unusual.

    Having said that:

    The first thing that stood out to me was the daggerboards being down.

    I couldn't tell the make of the boat but it looked well proportioned and seaworthy.

    That part of NSW is notorious for high winds and big seas. The continental shelf isn't far offshore. There isn't much to hit in the way of reefs and islands.

    So..and this is pure speculation.. I'd have had a good long look at the weather before heading out. Assuming it looked ok then turned I'd have downed sail, upped boards and motored for shore. Your HAVE to take the weather super seriously there, it's a dodgy place to sail. I've seen yachts stuck at coffs for literally weeks because it was too rough to go out. Obviously you lose power when you ditch your sails but I'd have ridden the swell or whatever prevailed and tried to aim for some safe anchorage. A cat is very difficult in deed to flip with sails down and boards up so your main problem is hitting something.

    This event is terribly sad for the families involved and also bad for multihull enthusiasts. It's been said before a mono sinks and there is no good vision for the news bulletin, but an upturned cat provides them a story and the belief cats are dangerous.

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