News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Photo Gallery Cruising Int
Sail-World.com : Was it a hoax or have a sailing family perished at sea?
Was it a hoax or have a sailing family perished at sea?


'A Hercules C-130 spent two days searching for the missing ’family’ sailing off the Californian coastline.'    .

Was it an expensive hoax or has a Californian family including two young children been lost at sea?

The Coast Guard this week called off the search for a boat that may have sunk in turbulent seas far off the California coast, saying nothing more could be done and that the family's distress calls might have been a hoax.


'We've exhausted the possibilities,' Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Mike Lutz told media outlets. The Coast Guard is treating the incident as a rescue, with the possibility the calls came from a trickster.

If it was real, then a couple with a small child and his cousin have been lost at sea in a boat named, according to radio messages, Charmblow. If it was a hoax it was another example of costly time and money being wasted by rescuers.

Crews started looking for the family by sea and air after receiving their first distress call Sunday afternoon, when the boaters said their 29-foot sailing boat was taking on water and their electronics were failing. The two-day search involved hundreds of rescuers from the Coast Guard and the California Air National Guard. A Hercules C-130 four-engine turboprop aircraft buzzed above the seas, while helicopters, cutters and lifeboats plied the waters, as costs soared into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The 'family' stayed in touch with rescuers, describing how their boat was taking on water, then that they planned to abandon ship and were trying to tie together a makeshift life raft out of a cooler and life-preserver ring, a method taught in survival classes. The boat had no working GPS system, but investigators were able to use its radio signal and radar to determine the call came from an area about 60 miles west of the coastline, where strong winter winds, cold water and big swells made for perilous conditions. Forecasters had issued a weekend advisory warning boaters of rough seas in the area.

After the notification that the family was to abandon the yacht, no further transmissions were detected. Waters in the area at this time of year are at about 50 degrees, so that survival time in the water would not exceed an hour without a survival suit or wetsuit.

Investigators determined from the broken distress calls that the family included a husband and wife, their 4-year-old son and his cousin, Coast Guard Lt. Heather Lampert has said.

Sunday's choppy conditions had smoothed to flat, glossy seas by Tuesday, and in harbors, neither officials nor boaters had heard of a vessel called 'Charmblow.'

Capt. Gene Maly, a 40-year veteran of sailing who runs a charter sailboat out of Monterey, it's possible that ill-prepared sailors set out without the proper training and equipment.

'It could be that these people are neophytes and had no clue,' he said. 'The last thing you want to do is abandon ship.'

Maly, who carries backup GPS navigators and extra life vests and radar systems, said he lives by the missive: 'Those that do not respect the sea will surely die. Those that respect the sea will only die now and then.'

Maritime safety expert Mitchell Stoller, a former Los Angeles harbor pilot and supertanker captain, said several safety items could have meant the difference between life and death: an inflatable life raft and an EPIRB, which costs no more than $200.

No family that responds to the description has been reported missing.


by Sail-World Cruising round-up

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=106985

1:55 AM Wed 27 Feb 2013GMT


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:

28 Jan 2013  Another very modern rescue in the Atlantic
22 Jan 2013  Amazing rescue: 'We couldn't have done it without the planes'
20 Jan 2013  Update: desperate rescue quest for sailor in life raft, Southern Ocean
19 Jan 2013  French solo sailor abandoned yacht the Southern Ocean, in life raft
02 Jan 2013  Looking Back on 2012: 10 Most Memorable Rescues
26 Dec 2012  Sailor rescued after eight days adrift
17 Dec 2012  AMVER to the rescue - two Canadian sailors rescued off Bermuda
08 Dec 2012  Tuna boat attempts rescue of damaged yacht off WA coast
01 Dec 2012  AMVER to the rescue again by calling on billionaire's superyacht
20 Nov 2012  Sinking of the Bounty: A survivor tells his story
MORE STORIES ...






Cruising USA









Canal Boating in the Alsace with the Galley Guys by Greg Nicoll with John Armstrong,


World ARC fleet arrives in Darwin by World Cruising Club,






Where in the world are our strongest corals? by Hanny Rivera - Cohen's Lab,








Barnacle Busting by Neil and Ley Langford,


From Penguins to Polar Bears by Cherie Winner,




Polar research: Six priorities for Antarctic science by Mahlon C. Kennicutt II and colleagues,




NCI granted dedicated VHF Channel by National Coastwatch,


Positive news for cruising boats in Greece by The Cruising Association,




















Risks to penguin populations continues by British Antarctic Survey,




Follow these tips when anchoring by Alex and Daria Blackwell,


Galley Guys meet the Spice Lady by Greg Nicoll, Andy Adams and John Armstrong,




If all else fails read the instructions!!
ARC Baltic fleet cruising and anchoring in the Finnish archipelago
Phuket Yacht Show: new kid on the block taking on PIMEX? *Feature
Vanuatu Customs making life easier for visiting cruising yachts
Baltic 4 Nations rally is now in full swing
Tropical Storm Bertha expected to become a typhoon
Flags at Sea, an infographic by John Tissott
Cruising lessons from ocean racers
Procedures set out for waterborne visitors to Vanuatu
17-year-old RNLI volunteer saves child in first rescue mission + Video
Teen names latest RNLI Shannon class lifeboat in Poole + Video
Fascinating opportunity with OceansWatch
Fake GPS signals detected when cruising the high seas
Our new Cruising Editor editor remembers his first offshore adventure
Blue Planet Odyssey - Jimmy Cornell playing catch up on North West Pa
World ARC 2014 reaches Australia
Venezuelan Port Control lift recent port restrictions.
Seismic survey ship operating north of Aruba and Curacao
Predictwind helps you pick the best time to depart
Watch this whale lift a Kayak clear out of the water
World ARC reaches half-way point in Australia   
Northern Scotland: Voyage to Orkney and Shetland Isles (Part 2) *Feature   
Drowning or electric shock? What you need to know to help save a life   
Costa Concordia - the $2.25 billion salvage operation ready to begin   
Northern Scotland: Voyage to Orkney and Shetland Isles, more photos *Feature   
Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - New location and attractions   
Long Island waters could become more taxing this summer   
4.8 million Legos all at sea   
Tranquil, colourful and funky, Genoa Bay is a must stop for West Coast *Feature   
Scientist pioneered tracer to reveal hidden ocean flows   
Sail-World 2.0 - the Beta version- Please take a look   
Dredging activity near corals can increase frequency of diseases   
World ARC heading out of the Pacific   
Understanding the Ocean's role in Greenland Glacier melt   
Desolation Sound added to Salish Sea Pilot free cruising guides   
Three Defensive Docking Strategies for Sailors   
Revealing report on Search for American yacht Nina released *Feature   
PredictWind's Weather Routing opens your navigation options - try it!   
Sail-World Cruising Founding Editor Nancy Knudsen says farewell   
Book review: Weather - you like it or not   


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  

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 Cru USA
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT