classic 21m US schooner NINA missing

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by Titirangi, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. Titirangi

    Titirangi Previous Member

    The classic schooner Nina departed from NZ Bay of Islands May 29 for Australia with 9 SOB sailing into very heavy weather 600nm north west of Cape Reinga and is reported missing believed possibly lost due to storms.

    After several satellite calls on June 3 to NZ weather station for weather info nothing has been heard since. A wide air sea search hasn't found any trace of the yacht or crew.

    As in many other cases the very experienced Capt. apparently decided to sail even though the forecast for the region wasn't good.
  2. Milehog
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    Milehog Clever Quip

    Still missing? I had hoped for good news...
  3. Titirangi

    Titirangi Previous Member

    NZ Airforce searched a huge area with Orions but nothing sighted, CG arranged for twin engine aircraft to search shoreline for any signs of survivors or wreckage.

    We had some really severe storm weather 150-200k/h winds with huge seas and heavy rain lasting several days over the whole region.

    The plan was a 12day sail to Australia but its a bit puzzling why they set out when they did.
  4. daiquiri
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    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    Was the storm preannounced by weather bulletins?
  5. Titirangi

    Titirangi Previous Member

    On May 29 a big very cold southerly front with gales, sleet and heavy rain had passed over NZ but divided. The main body went east with the western half stalling out in the Tasman then a second very big southerly change following due in 3-4 days.

    It probably arrived off the north west NZ in time to intercept with Nina's position.

    Tasman is always unpredictable this time of year starting with Autumn anti cyclones from southern ocean as Hobart racing has proven in the past.
  6. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

  7. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    Missing schooner Nina presumed sunk

    " The fact that satellite phones were not used and the EPIRB was not set off points to the fact that the historic schooner sank so suddenly in some catastrophic event that none of the crew had time to activate the EPIRB or phone.

    The crew was mostly American, aged from 17 to 73, with one British man known to be on board. The search has not been abandoned, as it is still possible that survivors are on board the life raft or made land. "
  8. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I find it very difficult to believe that all the EPIRB's likely aboard, failed to get activated.
  9. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    Yes, isnt there at least on device that will float to the surface automatically, activated by a lanyard ?
  10. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    Elsewhere it has been reported that there was one EPIRB aboard, that it was manually activated, and that it was kept below decks......I do not claim this is accurate info.
  11. Titirangi

    Titirangi Previous Member

    A decision was announced last night based on the vessel and crew have now been missing for three weeks to end the search.
    No wreckage or survivors were sighted at sea or along the western shores of the north island.
  12. tomas
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    tomas Senior Member

  13. BPL
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    BPL Senior Member

    I hate to say it; for $500, an automatic EPIRB should be mandatory now when going more than a few hours offshore.

    How often do you check your EPIRB?
  14. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I've had multiple EPIRB's aboard for over a couple decades. Way back then, these things weren't cheap. PLB's have supplanted most in pleasure boating circles.

  15. Titirangi

    Titirangi Previous Member

    Update today

    RCCNZ reported - Family members of some of those on board a missing schooner say a delayed satellite-phone message is giving them renewed hope the vessel may still be afloat after sailing into a severe storm.

    The 21-metre schooner Nina left Opua on May 29 and was last heard from on June 4 when the vessel was about 370 nautical miles west-north-west of Cape Reinga.

    Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand received details of the schooner's last known position on June 15, where weather conditions were known to have been rough with winds of 80km/h gusting to 110km/h and swells of up to 8m.

    On June 29 it became clear to RCCNZ that a message from the crew sent on June 4 had not been delivered. Working with the US State Department, the RCCNZ obtained contents of the message after phone carrier Iridium initially refused to release the information.

    "Thanks storm sails shredded last night, now bare poles. Going 4KT 310DEG will update course info @6pm," the text message read.

    Maritime New Zealand spokesperson Rosemary Neilson said the message clearly indicated the Nina was affected by the storm, but gave no indication of immediate stress.

    The message shows that Nina had survived the storm up to that point, but very poor weather continued in the area of many house and has been followed other storms.

    "The text message, in isolation, is not considered to indicate what might have happened subsequently," Ms Neilson said.

    The RCCNZ said the concerning part of the message was that the crew intended to provide course information six hours later at 6pm, but did not.

    Extensive aerial searches, and shoreline searches have found no trace of the crew, their vessel or liferaft.

    An RNZAF P3 Orion has today been tasked to search a rectangular area north of and parallel to another area searched by radar on Wednesday last week.

    Today's search will take the total coverage to more than 689,500 square kilometres.

    RCCNZ Operations Manager John Seward said today's search area was identified during reassessment overnight of the data gathered from earlier searches and the results of drift modelling from the last known positions for the yacht on June 4.

    EPIRB - Australia & New Zealand Maritime will not permit any vessel to go off shore if not equipped with a hydrostic activation EPIRB
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