News Home Photo Gallery Cruising Australia Cruising USA Cruising Canada Boats for Sale Sail-World Racing FishingBoating
Video Gallery Newsletters : Galleon Loses Three Masts – Crew Injured

Galleon Loses Three Masts – Crew Injured

'Raw Faith under sail'   
Maybe the sailing vessel Raw Faith should have made sure it had more than ‘raw faith’ when it set to sea the other day. One mast coming down is terrifying enough, when all three fall to the deck in stormy conditions and injure crew, it’s probably time to consider whether the vessel should be allowed to sea at all.

On Thanksgiving Day in 2004, the Coast Guard towed the home-built three-masted sailing vessel to Rockland after it became disabled about 80 miles northeast of Portland. The ship, a replica of a 16th century English race-built galleon, had been bound for Atlantic City, N.J., where the crew planned to stay for a couple of weeks before continuing to Florida.

After the ship's return to Rockland that fall, the Coast Guard ordered the Raw Faith to remain in Rockland until repairs to the ship's navigation lights, rudder and mast were completed.

Raw Faith anchored in Rockland after rescue -    

The builder and owner of the vessel George McKay, whose daughter Elizabeth suffers from Marfan's syndrome, built the ship with a mission to provide free sailing to people with disabilities. McKay and his family sold all their possessions, formed the non-profit entity Accessible Sailing Adventures in 2000 and have since been trying to raise money to provide sailing trips.

Raw Faith became disabled in a gale late Tuesday night near Mt. Desert Rock. The captain and crew called for assistance after losing one of three masts around 9 p.m. It had set sail from Jonesport on a trip to Cape May, N.J.

Coast Guard Group Southwest Harbour initially set up 30-minute radio communications with the Raw Faith and dispatched the Cutter Seneca to find and assist the ship. By 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, the Raw Faith reported to the Coast Guard that it had lost two more masts in the rough sea and strong winds.

All three masts reportedly landed on the deck of the ship. One person was reportedly hit in the head with part of the falling mast but was not seriously injured.

According to Petty Officer Joshua Ryan, the Seneca arrived on scene as planned around 8 a.m. Wednesday, locating the Raw Faith about 50 miles off Mt. Desert Rock.

'Nobody was injured, they're just a little seasick,' Ryan said. 'There was a gale last night and it was a pretty rough ride without any sails to keep them into the wind.'

Capt. Paul Dilger, commanding officer of the Coast Guard Cutter Abbie Burgess, said that his ship and crew sailed from Rockland to meet the Cutter Seneca south of Vinalhaven and tow the Raw Faith the final leg into Rockland.

After the first failed trip, Raw Faith remained at anchor off Rockland for nine months while undergoing improvements ordered by the Coast Guard.

In August, the ship was given permission to sail to Jonesport for mast work. It was given permission April 23 to set sail in reasonable weather conditions, said Lt. Daniel McLean of the Coast Guard's Marine Safety Detachment in Belfast.

Associated Press reported that Jeff Totman, a recreational sailor from Camden, blamed McKay for lacking proper respect for the sea or the proper skills to safely navigate safely.

'He just built himself a boat and headed out to sea. And every time he does, he has to be rescued,' said Totman, who posted a disapproving message on the RawFaith Web site.

The Raw Faith's masts were known to be too small, and it was reported that Mc- Kay had made 'unconventional' repairs to strengthen them. The Coast Guard now plans to keep the ship anchored at Rockland again, and be ‘firmer’ than they have in the past.

Click Here to write to us about this article

by Cruising Editor


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

5:04 AM Mon 15 May 2006 GMT

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

Sail-World Cruising News - local and the World

Springtime Greening: Boaters Tips for Earth Day by BoatUS Foundation/Sail-World Cruising,

British rescuers go for their own circumnavigation challenge by Derby Telegraph/Sail-World Cruising,

How sailors really do have a voice in the future of our oceans by Sandra Whitehouse, Sailors for the Sea,

Message-in-a-bottle record - 102 years by AFP/Sail-World Cruising,

Canadian solo sailor rescued north of Auckland by Sail-World Cruising round-up,

Free online fuel spill course - how much do you know? by BoatUS Foundation/Sail-World Cruising,

Product of the Week: Chafe guards save lines from friction
Government sneaks through the 'Affordable Boat Act'
Japan's Antarctic whaling program harpooned
Yacht of the Week: Kokomo III - and she could be yours
Life-shattering event sends 'rookie' couple sailing the world
Mysteries of the seas, happening right now - missing, sunk, foul play
Sail Norway and Russia this summer - your own boat, or charter
Sunshine4kids' 'Fleet of Hope' sets off again
3,200-year-old boat found in Croatian waters
Product of the Week: the LineGrabber
Mediterranean Mooring - How to moor stern-to to a dock or quay
Canadian storm bomb threat - sailors advised: get off the water!
Carbon monoxide poisoning - is it possible on YOUR boat?
Sailing family condemmed for taking 3-year-old on circumnavigation
New contract-free plan for satellite communicator on your smart phone
Yacht of the Week: The Dashew creation: no sails, but eco-friendly
No laughing! Sailing mistakes I don't want to make
Multihull Solutions Phuket 2014 Regatta - new sponsorship
Destination: From Moscow Sea to the White Sea
Land sailors of India on adventure across the Rann
Jet stream gets fish in hot water   
Still no plans for e-Borders   
A Paint App to (almost) replace your marine store assistant   
Air warms but water slower - be careful, sailors, of hypothermia   
Volunteer Canadian rescue team homeless - any offers?   
Hilary Lister and Nashwa Al Kindi set a new trans-ocean record   
How to anchor and 'never utter a word'   
Non-pyrotechnic flares for my boat - Can I or can't I?   
Health benefits of sailing   
Cruising in the Maldives - some nuts and bolts   
ISAF Guide to Offshore Personal Safety for Racing and Cruising   
Halyard Tension - a video   
Winchrite - for lazy days or extra muscle-power   
Researcher examines 'current leaks' that may change the way you sail   
Paris off to attempt to circumnavigate the world again   
Need a tow from that helicopter? - watch the video and don't laugh   
Certain oil spill products shown to be ineffective and toxic + Video   
The Constrictor: a powerful 'Queen' of sailing knots!   
British leisure craft permitted to use red diesel in Belgian waters   
Boat painting - simple but best tips   

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  

Our Advertisers are committed to our sport, please support them!
This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia Pty. Ltd and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.

Photographs are copyright by law. If you wish to use or buy a photograph you must contact the photographer directly (there is a hyperlink in most cases to their website, or do a Google search.) with your request.

Please do not contact as we cannot give permission for use of other photographer’s images.

Only if the photographer named on the image is,, or
Contact us .
Ph: +61 2 8006 1873 or complete our feedback form    Contact us .
   View our Privacy Policy.    [Go Home]     [  Banner Advertising Specification]    [Bot Archive ]

Customised news feeds -Marine Industry companies, Clubs and Associations have their own customised version of our news feed on their website.