Please select your home edition
Edition
Giacomo Yacht Sale

Teen tells of rescue as tall ship sank off Ireland

by This is Plymouth/Sail-World Cruising on 2 Aug 2013
Astrid as she was SW
A British teenager has described how she escaped from a Dutch-flagged 100-year-old tall ship as it sank off the coast of Ireland last week.

Katie Spencer, 15, a pupil at a Plymouth high school, said the drama of being rescued was an experience she will 'never forget'. Katie was one of three Britons rescued from the Astrid which struck rocks while attempting to enter the harbour at Kinsale, County Cork, last Wednesday morning.


Arriving back at Gatwick Airport she had only the clothes she was wearing when the boat sank and a bin bag with some donated clothes in.

She had secured a berth on board the Dutch vessel after seeing EU-funded places advertised on her local newspaper the Cornish Guardian's website. Boats came from across Europe to join the voyage, called The Gathering, which was supposed to last two weeks – but Katie, from Morval, near Looe, said it was an experience she would never forget.

'I was just about to go to sleep when we heard the engines cut out,' she said.

'We thought it might have been planned so no one was too worried, although we all wondered what was going on.

'Shortly after people were running around shouting, 'Get up! Get up!' and we were told to put our lifejackets on. We also had to quickly take down a sail, as it was blowing us on to rocks.

'Everyone was told to go to the back of the boat. I was surprisingly calm; I coped well with it. We all knew what we had to do [in case of an emergency] and that helped us keep calm.'

She said they were quickly dispatched to waiting lifeboats and were ashore within minutes.


Her mum Kim, said Katie lost all of her possessions including her camera with photos documenting her once-in-a-lifetime trip.

She also lost her ipod, passport, clothes, waterproofs and jewellery.

'All she had was her phone and the clothes she stood up in,' Kim said.

'Fortunately the lovely folk of Kinsale gave them all spare clothes.

'It is a good job she had her phone with her as she was able to ring my husband from the main lifeboat to let him know she was safe.

'We had been following the boats' progress online and would have noticed it disappear from the trace and naturally been very concerned.'

A spokeswoman for the RNLI told the Irish Mirror: 'At 11.50pm the captain of the tall ship signalled he had a problem. We stood by, and other boats also stood by. We simply didn't have the power to pull the Astrid off the rocks.

'It seems it was complete engine failure. One boat took 12 people to safety and an RNLI lifeboat rescued the remaining 18.

'The coxswain on one of the RNLI boats said everyone on that ship should be proud of themselves. They did everything by the book.'

Katie, a regular sailor at Siblyback Lake, said: 'I'd definitely go on a tall ship again. It was an amazing experience and one I will never forget.'

Vincent O'Donovan, of Courtmacsherry RNLI, said he believed the historic ship had gone for good. 'It's completely under water now,' he said. 'That region is a notorious spot for losing ships. It'll be breaking up below the water now and I don't think it'll be saved.'

The iron-hulled Astrid was built in 1918 with a lug rig, and until about 1975 carried cargo on the Baltic Sea. After a period sailing under the Lebanese flag, which ended with a disastrous fire, she passed into British hands in 1984.

The ship was completely restored, square-rigged as a brig and redesigned to train up-and-coming tall ship sailors.

Katie's mum Kim, who runs a holiday cottage business with husband Michael, said: 'We're all very grateful to the RNLI for the rescue, the people of Kinsale and particularly the Kinsale Yacht Club,' she said.

She was also full of praise for the trip's organisers: 'There was no panic and we were kept constantly updated by the company,' she said.

www.thisisplymouth.co.uk

Ancasta Botin Fast40 660x82Barz Optics - Kids rangeRS Sailing 660x82

Related Articles

A Few Rays – Moisturising, Anti-Aging Action …
Consistent moisturising sun protection has an anti-aging action Consistent moisturising sun protection has an anti-aging action Out on a boat, sailors are exposed to extreme conditions for their skin. There are UV rays from the sun, hopefully some wind if you are a sailor, and the drying effects from wet and dry cycles during the course of your day
Posted on 23 Jun
Doyle Sails announce new ownership and global expansion
Doyle Sails New Zealand formally announce their ownership of Doyle International Doyle Sails one of the global leaders in high performance sails as well as having a reputation for being proven innovators with new technology, has announced their next bold move to drive the Doyle business forward. The leadership team headed by Mike Sanderson and supported by David Duff and Richard Bouzaid from Doyle Sails New Zealand formally announced their ownership of Doyle International
Posted on 22 Jun
The Bridge – Arriving into New York on the 1st July
The 345m Cunard flagship ocean liner Queen Mary 2 will race some of the world’s fastest yachts from France to America. Two thousand seven hundred passengers will board this historical ocean liner to race against the world's fastest trimarans helmed by the worlds best skippers: Macif (François Gabart), Sodebo (Thomas Coville), Actual (Yves le Blévec), IDEC (Francis Joyon).
Posted on 21 Jun
Hokule'a makes it's way home after a three year worldwide voyage
Hokule'a along with sister-ship Hikianalia returned home to Hawaii after a three-year worldwide voyage. Saturday morning at 9:30 am HST, June 17, 2017, Hokule'a along with sister-ship Hikianalia returned home to Hawaii after a three-year worldwide voyage. Their tour included 150 port calls in 23 countries with 60,000 nautical miles shared between the two double-hulled sailing canoes.
Posted on 18 Jun
A Few Rays- Calculate how long your sunscreen lasts.
Confused by SPF's? It’s easy to calculate how long you will be protected by using the following process. Exposure to the sun is a serious issue for all those who venture on the water. Confused by SPF's? It’s easy to calculate how long you will be protected by using the following process.
Posted on 14 Jun
BoatUS looks at accuracy of 22 Years of hurricane season predictions
BoatUS Seaworthy Program, which helps BoatUS members avoid injuries and boat damage by analyzing insurance claims data With most 2017 storm forecasts now predicting average to above-average storm activity for the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season (June 1 – November 30), just how accurate are these predictions, and do boaters need to adjust their hurricane prep plans this year?
Posted on 13 Jun
Dismasted solo sailor Lisa to complete Antarctic Circumnavigation
Sydney- based solo sailor and adventurer Lisa Blair (32) will recommence her attempt to circumnavigate Antarctica She has spent the past two months preparing Climate Action Now so that she can complete her circumnavigation, including the installation of a new mast and repairs to the hull and electrical and navigation systems sustained during her dramatic dismasting.
Posted on 11 Jun
Race for Water – A key player in fight against plastic pollution
Race for Water Foundation is drawing attention to the need for concerted action against the plastic pollution To mark World Oceans Day on June 8, 2017, the Race for Water Foundation is drawing attention to the need for concerted action against the plastic pollution that is swamping our oceans.
Posted on 7 Jun
BoatUS – NOAA National Charting Plan looks to the future
The plan also allows NOAA to focus attention on underserved waterways, such as resolving chart discrepancies. The plan also allows NOAA to focus attention on underserved waterways, such as resolving chart discrepancies in areas of importance to recreational boaters.
Posted on 1 Jun
See how your smart phone can help save your life
OLAS, the man overboard location alert app from Exposure Lights is available on Android as well as through App Store. OLAS, the man overboard location alert app from Exposure Lights is now available on Android as well as through the App Store.
Posted on 25 May