sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Don McIntyre: On the loss of the yacht Berserk in the Antarctic

Don McIntyre: On the loss of the yacht Berserk in the Antarctic

'Spirit of Sydney - Sailing the Antarctic'    Margie McIntyre    Click Here to view large photo

Sailing adventurer Don McIntyre who, among his many other sailing exploits, has made nine sailing voyages to and through Antarctic waters, here comments on the tragic loss of the Norwegian yacht Berserk in the Ross Sea in the Antarctic. The steel yacht was skippered by Norwegian television personality Jarle Andhoey. On land trying to reach the south pole, he survived the sinking that cost the lives of three of his crewmates.

[As a guide to anyone thinking about such a voyage to Antarctica go to the www.iaato.org the International Association of Antarctic Tourist Operators (IAATO) has a section dedicated to Yachts.]


The final outcome of the Berserk voyage to Antarctica is sad for a few reasons..but as I write this, I hope that the yacht with the three missing crew may still be afloat, slowly headed north, in a damaged state, without communications. The outlook is not good, with every indication that it has sunk and the crew lost.

The Captain, Jarle Andhoey, has simply been reckless from the moment he set out on this expedition. He has an adventurous spirit which I admire. I have laughed at a few of his exploits in the past. He has the right to do his own thing, as we all do, but only if it does not impact on anyone else, or break any laws which may be in place for the sake of the environment or humanity. As a self proclaimed 'Viking' ,he does not really care. He shuns officialdom and his track record shows he may not listen to the law.
Skipper Jarle Andhoy, safe and on his way back to Christchurch -  .. .  

He apparently spoke to quite a few experienced Antarctic adventures (myself included) before the began, for advice and opinions, but for his own reasons then disregarded most of it.

I have visited the Ross Sea for the last six seasons. I have spent most summers since 1993 in East Antarctica on yachts and ships of various sizes. Unlike the Antarctic Peninsula (which is much milder with less hazards), East Antarctica under Australia and particularly the Ross Sea, is not the place for your average well found centre cockpit, steel cruising boat.

Berserk in Antarctica -  .. .  
You need a special yacht for that trip! During my own numerous sailing expeditions to the Antarctic, in specially equipped and prepared expedition yachts, the boat has hit ice and split the hull three times..water tight bulkheads were integral for safe passage and getting home. No other yacht had ever been as far south into the Ross Sea as Berserk attempted. Andhoey told me in November, before setting out, that he thought the Ross Sea would be easier than the Southern Ocean…I did not agree.

Collectively I have spent years sailing the Southern Ocean (including solo around the world) and the Ross Sea can be dramatically worse, especially when close to the Antarctic continent, where 'extreme' winds can create ridiculously unmanageable seas. In 80kts in the Southern Ocean, seas can still be managed and you don’t usually have ice. As expedition leader on Antarctic cruise ships, I have seen some sea states off Commonwealth Bay that I believe no yacht would survive, 'unless' it was the best of the best, specifically built for the job , manned by a very experienced crew and I would not want to be one of them….it is not a game.

Berserk liferaft recovered - photo from Sea Shepherd -  .. .  
You can be lucky and even go down in a multihull, but for me, you must prepare for the absolute worst and hope for the best. Berserk did not do that. They did not have a crisis management plan, they had no contingency planning, they did not alert the relevant RCC of their plans before setting off, they did not have the necessary permits under the Antarctic treaty (which is law for Norwegian yachts heading to Antarctica) and by all reports they were seriously overloaded.

I cannot comment on the equipment they had onboard, nor the training or experience of the crew, but if they were doing a full risk minimisation plan before they set off, they should have had a satellite tracking system reporting their position regularly, Iridium sat phones in Waterproof pouches, survival suits, PLB’s and at least two Epirbs,( one float free and one manual)..they should have had two life rafts, all the crew should have done a survival course and everything about the boat should have been in perfect condition, with great emphasis taken on watertight integrity…hatches and companionways etc..One can only speculate, but the photos I have seen of Berserk, if overloaded and icing up , could turn the cockpit into a big funnel ( if the companion way hatches breeched in a Knock down) pouring water below rapidly, as the 8 mtr seas are short, steep and would dump onboard easily.( not like longer Southern Ocean seas) With no watertight bulkheads and floating 'growlers' hard to see in 90kts of wind blown white out (which they had)…the results would be catastrophic. A helmsman in those conditions is afforded little protection from a design that is meant to be cruising the Pacific. It is all simply a bad formula!

In December Andhoey asked if I would rendezvous with Berserk off Ross Island at the very bottom of the Ross Sea. He wanted to transfer 1500 ltrs of fuel onto Berserk from the MV. ORION (4000 tonne expedition ship.) I agreed, but only if he could show me his permits to undertake the fuel transfer and the expedition itself. I would also then have to get special permits for that activity. The Antarctic permits are all about protecting the environment. He said he had a Russian Agent that would do that, but never did. He then said he did not need a permit anyway, as basically he would be a vessel in need of assistance. We made it clear that you cannot claim that if you are trying to organise things months in advance!

I told him to get out of the Ross Sea no later than Feb 20th as conditions can get very bad after that. It would mean leaving Ross Island by about the 14th Feb. He arrived late and unbelievable was apparently trying to get to the South Pole? on tracked ATV’s? when the rest of Antarctica ( Govt. and Private) was shutting down for the season as the weather is getting so bad?.

I love adventure and will passionately protect the right of people to do their thing like I myself have done and continue to do. Jarle Andhoey just set back the cause of responsible risk takers many years. The Norwegian Govt has announced that they intend prosecuting him. Many people selflessly put themselves in harm's way trying to find the lost sailors. Even the rescuer's job could have been made less dangerous, if Jarle Andhoey had been fully prepared and fully equipped.…or done as the true Vikings would have done and left the EPIRB at home……we all have the right to die.

Don and Margie McIntyre -  Margie McIntyre   Click Here to view large photo
About Don McIntyre:
53 year old Don McIntyre is one of Australias most experienced sailors, having competed in the 1990 BOC Challenge Single Handed Around the World Yacht Race, coming second in Class, the highest placing for an Australian at the time.

He then embarked on numeros Antarctic sailing Expeditions, including in 1995, living in a 2.4m X 3.6m box for a year, together alone in Antarctica, with his wife Margie, chained to rocks at Cape Dennison, the site of Sir Douglass Mawson’s Hut and an area called the Home of the Blizzard.

Having been awarded an Australian Geographic Society silver medal for the Spirit of Adventure in 1993, Don and Margie were Awarded the Australian Geographic Society’s highest honour in 1996…a Gold Medal as Adventurers of the Year, the youngest to ever recieve it at that time.

Their award winning documentary and best selling book 'Two Below Zero' are still in demand sixteen years on.

When Don owned Spirit of Sydney (pictured above) it made nine sailing voyages to the Antarctic.

More recently, with three crew Don completed a re-enactment of the voyage of Captain Bligh's voyage in a small open boat from where he was cast adrift the South Pacific to Kupang in Timor. The voyage took 44 days and covered 4000 miles.

Don & Margie McIntyre now lead tourist expeditions to Antarctica on the 4000 tonne ship cruise ship ORION.
.




by Don McIntyre

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=81046

7:07 AM Sun 6 Mar 2011 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


Related News Stories:

28 Mar 2011  Voyaging with Velella: Baja Hospitality
14 Dec 2010  Sydney to Melbourne, non-stop and almost unassisted, in a month

News - USA and the World

At exactly 00:01 on the 29th January 2015, TeamVestas?' VO65 left VTE - Voltri Terminal Europa en route to Persico Marine in the foothills of the Italian Alps. The boat is now safely secured in a purpose-built facility near Bergamo, awaiting full assessment and the beginning of the repair process. ... [more]  

ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami Day 3 - There's a world of difference between skiing a long, smooth run and skiing on moguls. Today, forget the waves, it was the breeze on Biscayne Bay that was 'moguls.' Shift upon shift upon shift upon shift. ... [more]  

Ioannis Mitakis (GRE), the 2012 Finn European Champion, ruled the roost in Miami today with two emphatic race wins and moves up to third overall. Giles Scott (GBR) sailed his worst day so far, but still leads with a five point gap on Jake Lilley, and 12 points over Mitakis as the event reaches its half way stage. ... [more]  

The International DN Ice Yacht World and North American Championships are being held in Kingston, Ontario (right in front of our office). For the Kingston Yacht Club, we skated out to the middle of the lake, and put together a little highlight piece for them to remember the event by. ... [more]  

Doyle Sails had more success last weekend in the Auckland Optimist Championships, taking first and second overall in the 110 strong Open fleet. Six countries were represented in the event, and young sailors came the length of New Zealand to compete in the regatta that is a ranking event for World and International team selection. ... [more]  

EFG's Star Winter Series rules in Biscayne Bay by Connie Bischoff, Miami, FL
The third Star Winter Series presented by EFG (SWS) and hosted by Miami’s Biscayne Bay was a shining success. Not only have all five regattas had stronger participation than last year but the final one, the Mid Winters, grew 35% with 45% of the sailors international (CAN, SWE, BRA, UKR, ARG, ITA and GER). ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Day 3 photos provided by Ocean Images. ... [more]  

Day 3 of ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella marked the midpoint of North America’s biggest Olympic and Paralympic classes regatta. With bright sunshine and fresh breeze in abundance, the world’s top athletes in 13 classes were treated to the conditions that exemplify why Miami is a preferred international sailing destination. ... [more]  

It was windshift upon windshift upon shift upon windshift on Day 3 of the ISAF World Sailing Cup Miami sailed on Biscayne Bay Presented by Sunbrella, the premier regatta has attracted 599 boats and 768 sailors who were adjusting all day to one thing or another. If it wasn't the wind direction that was changing, it was the wind speed. ... [more]  

Following the success of the Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series that concluded last week, the dates of next year’s event have been confirmed for 16-24 January 2016. With overseas competitors from 11 nations represented a large part of the 47-strong fleet overall at the 2015 event ... [more]  

Ben Ainslie Racing, the British Challenger for the 35th America's Cup, have shipped two foiling Nacra 20 catamarans to Bermuda and have become the first team to commence sailing operations at the Venue for the next Cup. The team conducted an initial training camp in Bermuda, last week. ... [more]  

North U kicked off its 2015 season of youth match racing clinics around the U.S. with a successful clinic hosted by the Texas Corinthian Yacht Club in Kemah, Texas on Galveston Bay near Houston. Forty high school and college sailors spent two-and-a-half days learning about match racing and training in Sonars on flat water and 6-12 knots of breeze. ... [more]  

A fantastic week of sunshine, warm weather, big breeze and competitive sailing is what sailors were treated to last week in Key West. Several Canadians left the bitter cold of the north to partake in the fun filled week and a few even brought home trophies. Here's a peek at the fun in the sun! ... [more]  

At ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, presented by Sunbrella, if the Chamber of Commerce had stayed up all night working at it, they could not have served up a better day for racing. ... [more]  

On day 2 of ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella, the rainstorms of yesterday vanished but the excellent wind conditions remained in place on Biscayne Bay. A more conventional day of racing saw US Sailing Team Sperry athletes finish the day in the top 10 in 5 Olympic classes and 2 Paralympic classes. ... [more]  

Bringing Dragon Sailors from around the world to Antigua. Harmony Hall Yacht Club, with the support of the Antigua Yacht Club Marina and the Inn at English Harbour, will host the second Annual Antigua Dragon Yacht Club Challenge with nine races scheduled to take place over five days in fantastic Caribbean conditions on identical Petticrow Dragons. ... [more]  

There are so many ways that the Dongfeng Race Team could have lost the chance to win the light-air marathon from Abu Dhabi to Sanya in China. Leading from the first 24 hours to the finish, 23 and a half days later, 5,403 nautical miles sailed and eight different gulfs, oceans and seas, is not necessarily the most advisable way to try and take the spoils. ... [more]  

Sydney photographer, Michael Chittenden was on Sydney harbour last Sunday and captured these images from Race 4 of the NSW 18ft Skiff Championships ... [more]  

New Zealand short-handed sailor, Conrad Colman is on his second two handed round the world race, this time aboard the Spirit of Hungary with Nandor Fa sailing in the Barcelona Round the World Race: I had noticed a couple of chafing zones on the mainsail so I prepared some patches and the Dr. Sails flexible epoxy glue so we could drop the main quickly ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami- Photos provided by Ocean Images. ... [more]  

Photographer Ingrid Abery was on the water at 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami and provided this gallery of images. ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - It may have been a day late for Australia Day, but on the second day at the Sailing World Cup Miami, the Australian Finn sailors were on a charge with some sparkling performances. Giles Scott (GBR) still leads after winning the opening race of the day, while Jake Lilley (AUS) won the second and moved up to second overall. Ed Wright (GBR) is in third. ... [more]  

2015 Pineapple Cup – Montego Bay Race is set to begin Friday, February 6. The 32nd edition of the venerable Pineapple Cup – Montego Bay Race will start in Port Everglades, Florida, and send its 12-boat fleet on a challenging 811 nautical mile course to Montego Bay, Jamaica. George Sakellaris’s (Framingham, Mass.) 72-foot Shockwave will be the largest boat competing, so it should be interesting to ... [more]  

VX One momentum is growing with ever larger fleets showing the pure fun and easy performance of this true thoroughbred one design. ... [more]  

Last Friday, former Oracle Team USA team member, Matthew Mitchell issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the International Sailing Federation over the actions of a fellow crew member, Simeon Tienpont, and inaction by the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup, in San Francisco. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: A warm and colorful welcome for Team SCA into Sanya by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com NZL, Auckland, NZ
The all-female crew, Team SCA, arrived to a warm and colorful welcome including fireworks, Chinese dragons, orchid garlands and traditional costumes into the city of Sanya on Hainan Island in southern China early Tuesday evening (local time). 'It was a really different leg. I wouldn’t say it was hard in terms of the physical side but it just had lots of things coming at all angles ... [more]  

Touch2Play had the great fortune of participating in what would be the largest yet gathering of J88’s to date. Quantum Key West Race Week would serve as a chance to see how boats lined up against one another in conditions that covered the full range. For this event we had Rob and Sandy Butler, Steve Leibel, Keven Piper, Coleen Walsh and myself, Larry Huibers. ... [more]  

As the Barcelona World Race leaders race to the Crozet Islands, once again their paths have diverged – Neutrogena around 200 miles to the south-west of first-placed Cheminées Poujoulat on the water, and gaining around 40 miles in the past 24 hours. ... [more]  

For the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) will announce on Saturday (31 January) at 10:00 CET the final line-up of sports. ... [more]  

On a high octane first day of the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami on Monday (26 January) Giles Scott, Alison Young and the Paralympian Sonar trio of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas saw the best possible start to their 2015 sailing seasons with double race victories. ... [more]  

On the opening day of racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, presented by Sunbrella, it was sunny and bright. It was storming and raining sideways. It was sunny and bright. ... [more]  

On the opening day of racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, presented by Sunbrella, it was sunny and bright. It was storming and raining sideways. It was sunny and bright. ... [more]  

RC44 World Championship Leg 1 gets underway on 24th March until 29th March 2015. The RC 44 Class is unlike any 40 foot sailing yacht ever designed, and the reason for that is simple. She is a high performance one design yacht created for top level racing in international regattas. If one was to compare this concept to racing cars, then we would be talking about the F1, NASCAR or similar. ... [more]  

ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - US Sailing Team Day 1
ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami -Finn class -testing conditions on Day 1
ISAF Olympic classes regatta Miami 2015 images by Ingrid Abery
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Alvimedica wins first podium place in Sanya
Volvo Ocean Race: Dongfeng scores historic victory for China
Volvo Ocean Race: Dongfeng release first DroneCam video from Leg 3
Volvo Ocean Race: Chinese team set historic first with home port win
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Vestas Wind arrives on time in Genoa + Video
America's Cup - Virgin considers backing Ben Ainslie, BAR
Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race - Changes
Alpari World Match Racing Tour - Monsoon Cup preview
Barcelona World Race - A game of chase
Quantum Key West Race Week: Four GC32's make spectacular USA debut
Volvo Ocean Race – Frostad says Caudrelier proving them wrong *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race - Last day drag race to Sanya
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - Tense onboard Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - Dongfeng Race Team pushing hard!
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 3 Finish - Video - Delayed feed
2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Countdown begins
Volvo Ocean Race: Donfeng set to create a piece of sailing history
Barcelona World Race - First of the iconic Great Capes has been passed   
Classic 18fters racing on Sydney Harbour   
Volvo Ocean Race - Can Dongfeng still hang on for a Sanya win??   
Stephanie Roble, 2014 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year   
Barcelona World Race - Taking advantage   
Oakcliff Awarded Joe Prosser Award at US Sailing NSPS 2015   
20 Nations head for 2015 St.Maarten Heineken Regatta   
Volvo Ocean Race - Less than 500 miles to go   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Fantastic finish   
Barcelona World Race: Weather beacons launched midrace   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 5   
Mount Gay Round Barbados Race – Gala prizegiving marks end of event   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 5 images by Ingrid Abery   
Volvo Ocean Race Leader - Dongfeng - the right place at the right time   
ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship - Notice Of Race online   
Volvo Ocean Race: Changes to Team Vestas Wind crew   
McDougall+McConaghy Moth Worlds: Highlight video released   
America's Cup: Oracle crew mate lodges complaint against Tienpont   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 4 images by Ingrid Abery   
2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - US Sailing Team preview   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT