sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Sinking of the Bounty: A survivor tells his story
Sinking of the Bounty: A survivor tells his story

'HMS Bounty in her death throes'    .

Of all the nightmares that a cruising sailor might have about misadventures at sea, one of the most vivid is that of watching your boat sink while you climb into a life raft in a raging storm. What would it be like... how would you feel...? Here a survivor from the sinking of the HMAS Bounty, Chris Barksdale, tells his story to Katrina Koerting:

Bounty survivor remembers the moments -  .. .  

Being in the water was the most frightening, looking up at the masts and rigging rising and falling toward me with the force of the 20-foot waves.

That’s when I didn’t know if I was going to make it or not. I had to break free of the rigging several times. The worst part was trying to get away from the ship.

The limited flexibility in our immersion suits and the waves made it difficult for us to deploy the life rafts and climb aboard.

I have no idea how long we were in the water, it seemed like an eternity.


Barksdale and five others had managed to make it onto one of the two rafts, which hold 20 people. The other raft held a majority of the remaining crew. Waves continued to smack the crew, sending them to the other side of the raft.
.......

But back to the beginning...

Before Hurricane Sandy caused the sinking of the famed tall ship, Chris Barksdale had started to think of his fellow crew members as a family.

'When you’re together 24/7 like that, you become family relatively quickly,' the fifty-six-year-old told the Nelson Country Times. 'We were all pretty close before the tragedy and we’re closer now.'

Barksdale was one of 14 crewmembers rescued about 90 miles off the coast of North Carolina when the Bounty went down. Two crewmembers died — the ship’s captain, Robin Walbridge, whose body was not found, and deckhand Claudene Christian.

The ship had set sail from New London, Conn., on Oct. 25 en route to Florida when it crossed paths with Sandy a few days into the trip. The storm was not unexpected by the crew; Walbridge had called everyone on deck to tell them about the approaching hurricane before they left Connecticut, saying he would understand if people decided to get off the ship, Barksdale said.

Everyone stayed.

'Naturally I was a little hesitant about that, but [the captain] explained the situation and it seemed like he had a pretty good strategy,' Barksdale said. 'We were going to try and get around the hurricane. Nobody knew that it was going to have the intensity and size it ended up having.'

Rough winds and waves shook the ship for about a day and a half. Crewmembers had to cling to parts of the Bounty or they would be thrown overboard.

Around midday Oct. 28, the crew noticed the ship was taking on more water than normal. Mechanical problems developed, including the failure of one of the main engines and the water pumps. The U.S. Coast Guard and the Bounty’s land office were alerted.

Conditions worsened later in the day. Crewmembers began pulling out immersion suits — used to keep them dry and warm in the water — and stuffing dry bags with rations in case the order came to abandon ship, Barksdale said.

Up until the early hours of Oct. 29, the crew’s priority was saving the ship.

Barksdale said that while he knew they were in trouble, he thought they would be OK because of the crew’s training, experience and preparation.

'There was never any panic amongst anybody,' he said. 'The crew knew what they needed to do; everybody was sticking together. Everybody was making sure that we were prepared.'

When the battered and sleep-deprived crew went on deck in the hours before dawn, waves continued to hammer the ship. The Bounty had taken on so much water she was almost on her side with her three masts in the ocean.

'It became apparent that you didn’t have much choice, you were going in that water,' Barksdale said.

This was the last time Barksdale saw the captain and Christian.

Bounty rescue -  .. .  
It was the next morning, about 6:30 a.m., that the Coast Guard’s helicopters provided a welcome soundtrack overhead. A Coast Guard rescuer dove into the waters and began pulling the Bounty’s crew to safety using a basket tethered to the helicopter. The basket spun in the 40 mph winds during the ascent.

'The character of a man that would jump in and have himself lowered into those seas and go swimming in those seas to rescue people he had never laid eyes on, there’s a lot to be said for him,' Barksdale said.

As the life raft began to empty and become lighter, the wind force from the helicopter’s blades flipped it, sending Barksdale and a few others back into the ocean as they awaited rescue.

After a rough ride up into the helicopter, Barksdale and his friends had a cramped two-hour flight to Elizabeth City, N.C. At the base, they were given food, clothes and medical attention and learned the fate of their other crewmembers.

'I have the highest admiration for the Coast Guard and Red Cross,' Barksdale said.

HMS Bounty -  .. ©   Click Here to view large photo


by Katrina Koerting, Nelson County Times/Sail-World

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=103934

8:43 AM Tue 20 Nov 2012GMT


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

Click for further information on
EPIRB's and rescues

Related News Stories:

11 Nov 2012  Couple rescued, boat lost to storm on notorious Tonga-Auckland route
05 Nov 2012  PLB Where? Permanently attached to your person of course
09 Oct 2012  PLB saves life of another solo sailor
06 Oct 2012  Sinking sailor calls Mum
06 Oct 2012  Sinking sailor calls Mum
23 Sep 2012  Dangerous rescue brings more awards for three
01 Sep 2012  Dismasted yacht with no EPIRB waits 10 hours for rescue
19 Aug 2012  Hopes faded for missing WA sailor
17 Aug 2012  Search underway in WA for missing sailor
04 Aug 2012  EPIRB proves its worth in sudden capsize- seven French sailors rescued
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 14 onboard Team Alvimedica. Our boat smells a bit better this morning and I’m not sure if it’s because the gnarly concoction of freeze-dried brew in the bow has been sacrificed to the sea along with some of Mark, Charlie, and Alberto’s head hair, or if it’s because those three have had a complete bathing following said sacrifice to King Neptune. ... [more]  

A remarkable list of contributors to sailing in the U.S. were presented with US Sailing’s highest honors during Friday night’s Awards Dinner, presented by Rolex, at the Hilton Milwaukee City Center. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Heading for the speedway to Cape Town *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
The Volvo Ocean race fleet are now all around the turning mark of Fernando de Noronha, and have continued down the Brazilian coast. Currently the first three yachts, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Team Brunel and Team Vestas Wind are all travelling at 17kts, as they travel around the St Helena High. ... [more]  

Join the crew of the ORMA60 TeamVodafoneSailing as they slash 20 minutes off their previous record for the PIC Coastal Classic on Friday. The Coastal Classic is a 119nm course from Auckland to Russell in the Bay of Islands. Originally conceived as a drag race between multihulls and monohulls ... [more]  

Day four at the 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds in Clearwater, Florida, and the sound of the day was that of racers whooping and hollering past the race committee boats (two imposing 44-ft power catamarans provided by event sponsor MarineMax) in a breeze that high-wind specialists had been waiting for all week. ... [more]  

The prize giving ceremony for the Rolex Middle Sea Race was held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre, one of Valletta's most historic venues. Honoured guests included: The Minister of Tourism; The Hon Dr. Edward Zammit Lewis. ... [more]  

Dongfeng Race Team is putting in a dominant performance at the China Cup International Regatta, with scores of 1,1,1,2 so far in IRC Division B, with last year’s winner Whiskey Jack in second. The Jeanneau Sunfast 3600 is skippered by the boat’s designer, Frenchman Daniel Andrieu. ... [more]  

2014 Optimist World Championship - The first stage of the OptiWorlds Argentina 2014 schedule has finished today. The fleet was divided in three equal parts: the first third is gold, the second one is silver and the last fleet is bronze. This individual regatta continues next Tuesday. ... [more]  

2014 - 15 Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing won the race to the Equator late on Thursday and were in good shape to make the turning mark of Fernando de Noronha at the head of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet as their six rivals were still playing catch-up despite finally escaping the Doldrums. ... [more]  

After more than 17 years with the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Jerome has decided to pursue other professional challenges. ... [more]  

2014 Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup - Stamina and determination were key factors for the competitors racing in day two of the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup today. The 14 international guests and 26 young Bermudians finished five races on Bermuda’s Great Sound. This is a test of endurance for any sailor especially young ones. ... [more]  

With less than a day left to reach the turning mark at Fernando de Nonoha, 220nm off the coast of Brazil, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing has retained the lead she built in the Doldrums. She is unlikely to be headed, although the second boat on the water, Team Brunel is projected to be less than an hour behind at Fernando ... [more]  

2014 International Masters Regatta - Anyone heading out to San Diego Bay this weekend is likely to witness some of sailing’s most legendary skippers show exactly why they’ve earned the reputation as the best in the business. Established in 1975 by Don Trask, the International Masters Regatta features the best master sailors from around the world and is being hosted by the San Diego Yacht Club ... [more]  

One flight of the Quarter Finals was sailed Friday afternoon following the completion of the Qualifying Rounds and the selection of opponents and draw for boats. The Quarter Finals set Ian Williams against Marek Stanczyk, Taylor Canfield against Steffan Lindberg, Eric Monnin against Pierre Morvan, and an all Swedish pairing of Bjorn Hansen against Johnie Berntsson. ... [more]  

What could be better than racing for three days with over 2000 of the world's best sailors? How about racing for four days! The St.Maarten Heineken Regatta is proud to announce that their pre-event, the Gill Commodore's Cup, is accepting entries in all boat categories (excluding Lottery Class). ... [more]  

The seventh day of the La Torche PWA Grand Slam saw the light winds continue, despite a promising forecast for today. In the late afternoon a few of the sailors took part in a tow-in training session as there is scope to run a tow-in contest tomorrow, with the forecast looking glassy. ... [more]  

Picture postcard perfect conditions returned to Bermuda for the third and final day of Qualifying at the Argo Group Gold Cup, the sixth stage of the 2014 Alpari World Match Racing Tour. After yesterday’s torrential rain, Hamilton Harbour was bathed in glorious sunshine and breeze that by lunchtime was gusting up to the mid-teens. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Leaders pass Fernando and head for Cape Town *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Volvo Ocean Race Control reports that the lead boats in the 40,000nm race have rounded, or rather passed, the turning point off Fernando de Noronha. They are now proceeding down the Brazilian coast, to round the back of the South Atlantic high pressure zone , and have what is expected to be a fast ride to the Leg 1 finish in Cape Town. ... [more]  

Melges 32 Gold Cup on the horizon by International Melges 32 Class Association
With a fleet and sailors as diverse as the nightlife on Ocean Avenue, the Melges 32 Gold Cup, hosted by the Coconut Grove Sailing Club kicks off in just two weeks, featuring eighteen ultra-high performance Melges 32 teams from nine different countries. ... [more]  

Rolex Middle Sea Race - Keeping a good watch by Media Royal Malta Yacht Club
Peter Dimech, Principal Race Officer and Race Chair spoke about the storm that raged through the Rolex Middle Sea Race fleet. “The remaining yachts racing in the Rolex Middle Sea Race are expected to arrive at the Royal Malta Yacht Club by today and tomorrow. Whilst the wind speed has decreased, the sea state is still significant and we are keeping a close watch on the yachts still at sea. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Onboard Team Alvimedica. I’d hate to come across as being impossible to please but after days of wanting out of the doldrums, days of struggling with routines, with sleep, with a lack of regularity and consistency to our schedules, and of course--predictability to the weather—we’re 'out' and still trying to find it ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 13 onboard Team SCA. I’m unsure if I should be nervous, excited, stressed, or thrilled today. As today I get to have fish guts smeared over me only to then become officially apart of King Neptune’s kingdom. ... [more]  

There was a shakeup at the top on day three of the 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds in Clearwater, Florida! Fully recharged thanks to the lay day yesterday, all competitors were eager to enter the final stretch of the competition in Clearwater, and the planing conditions in the forecast certainly contributed to the excitement on the beach. ... [more]  

The opening day of the 105-boat China Cup International Regatta saw old rivalries renewed in the Beneteau 40.7 class, as Vatti Sailing stole victory from Vanke Longcheer in the opening Simpson Marine Passage Race from Hong Kong to Shenzhen. ... [more]  

Team Alvimedica Navigational Strategist, Anderson Reggio, explains the issues ahead of the crews in the remaining half of leg 1 of the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race. After the Equator and Fernando, the weather looks to be shaping up to be pretty standard for the South Atlantic. The St Helena High which typically dominates this body of water is the main driver for breeze in the short term. ... [more]  

The next landmark, or ‘sea mark’ if you will, for Leg 1 is crossing the Equator, as Team Alvimedica continue to make their way south to round Fernando de Noronha off the coast of Brazil. Crossing this latitude is not like crossing any other on their way around the world, but has special significance for sailors who have never crossed the 0° parallel of latitude. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Mapfre cruzará el Ecuador hacia las 13:00 aproximadamente. ... [more]  

Argo Group Gold Cup - A front slowly crossing Bermuda brought with it an overcast sky and rain squalls. Nonetheless, despite squelching their way ashore completely soaked, the Group 2 crews enjoyed the morning’s stronger breeze, the wind less shifty having veered into the southwest overnight, blowing down Hamilton Harbour rather than across it. ... [more]  

RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup - In second place, Adam Larson of Bermuda has seven points and had a great day on the water today. Larson, whose family is still without electricity after Hurricane Gonzalo, said he has been getting to bed a lot earlier these days and feels that the conditions also favored his performance today. ... [more]  

As predicted in last night's preview in Sail-World, the ORMA 60 TeamVodafone Sailing has set a new course record for the 119nm course in the PIC Coastal Classic. ... [more]  

Taylor Canfield (ISV) US One, top seed in Group 2, is the first skipper to qualify for the Quarter Finals in the 2014 Argo Group Cup. Canfield lost his first match in day one of racing against Chris Poole (USA) Riptide Racing. Since then the number two skipper on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour has sailed to seven straight points. ... [more]  

The forecast for day six at the La Torche PWA Grand Slam offered a slight possibility of producing some racing, but unfortunately the wind never really materialised meaning the sailors spent another day on hold. Throughout the day there were gusts of up to 10 knots, but the wind failed to improve beyond that. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 12 onboard Team SCA. This morning the boat was so quiet you could hear a pin drop, shortly after sun up we were hooning along in 20kts in a torrential downpour, by late afternoon we were sailing backwards, and who knows what tonight will bring. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing first to exit the Doldrums
Volvo Ocean Race - Day 12 for Team Alvimedica
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Luna Sea 100th entry for 628 nautical mile race
Student Yachting World Cup - England emerges victorious
RORC Transatlantic Race fast approaching
Star Sailors League Finals - Three American greats to compete
America's Cup: Airbus and Oracle Team USA forge technology partnership
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Another dramatic day
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Artie confirmed as overall winner
Argo Group Gold Cup - Near perfect start for GAC Pindar
Volvo Ocean Race - A nightmare for sailors
The 2014 Severne Starboard Aloha Classic is coming...
Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - Artie's heroic return
Argo Group Gold Cup - Slender lead for Marek Stanczyk
Ben Ainslie Racing foiling on the Solent + Video *Feature
METS names DAME Award nominees
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - A day of rest for wave sailors
Rolex Middle Sea Race - A day of reckoning for the fleet
Volvo Ocean Race - Playing the Doldrums lottery
Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng Race Team takes on the Doldrums
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Alvimedica, somewhere in the windless ITCZ   
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Artie gunning for glory   
Volvo Ocean Race - Another perspective from Team SCA   
Rolex Farr 40 World Championship - Success in San Francisco   
RS:X Youth World Windsurfing Championship - Intense racing + Video   
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Big breeze and lumpy seas   
The first sail that changes lives   
Volvo Ocean Race: Blogs from the Boats - Leg 1, Day 10 plus Videos *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 1 turns inside out in Doldums *Feature   
34th Student Yachting World Cup La Rochelle 2014 - Fifth race day   
2014 Argo Group Gold Cup - Match racers defy Gonzalo   
Volvo Ocean Race: Big gains for two boats in Doldrums *Feature   
Argo Group Gold Cup - Qualifying Groups set   
Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup - Kids breeze past Hurricane Gonzalo   
DSS to revolutionise IMOCA 60s, both new and old   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami: Groupe Beneteau sponsors US Sailing Team   
Volvo Ocean Race - The bright side of the Doldrums   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Vestas Wind contemplates the tropics + Video   
Volvo Ocean Race - Dull day, crazy night for Dongfeng Race Team   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team SCA ready for equator crossing   


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