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ORCV Sailing news update

by ORCV 16 Sep 15:22 PDT
ORCV Sailing news update © ORCV

Without a "crystal ball", when we can, we will continue to run the races as outlined in our racing calendar. We are planning for Stanley, Devonport and Hobart and should the borders to Tasmania remain closed we will run alternative races on our designated race dates.

It's great to have West Offshore Products partnering with us for another Coastal Sprint season which are now well and truly part of our pathway the ORCV offers to those looking to develop and test crews and equipment or just another way we can all get together and enjoy an ocean sailing experience.

Keel and rudder inspections are coming for category 3, 2 and 1 racing with the article below detailing what's required.

This season we aim to streamline the administration and reduce office costs. In addition to TopYacht loaded boat documents that will be checked thoroughly once for the season, ORCV skippers will be provided with race declarations for each race to confirm compliance of a number of items including life rafts, boat emergency contact is not on the boat, insurance etc. There will be more responsibility on the skipper or crew coordinator to follow up on missing crew information given the number of crews now participating.

We encourage everyone to check their personal details in the three external systems the ORCV uses for racing and/or training events. Please take some time during lockdown to update your information in preparation for the upcoming racing season.

  • Top Yacht - for sailor profiles to check crew compliance for our races.
  • Australian Sailing Revolutionise Sport - for ORCV membership, SSS certification and checking Australian Sailing Numbers.
  • Australian Maritime Safety Authority - for checking Personal Locator Beacon Registrations.

ORCV has created a how to guide here which steps you through the update process, which will help reduce the administration and time spent ensuring you are compliant.

Entries will be open soon for all our races and we ask you to enter initially without payment so that we can keep planning and know everyone's intentions.

When restrictions lift, we will be sailing again so please keep preparing, as when we can we will continue to provide ocean sailing opportunities to you.

Jeremy Walton
ORCV Sail Captain

Keel and rudder inspections


Unfortunately, in recent years there have been a significant number of serious keel failures in offshore racing, some of which have resulted in fatalities. World Sailing has reviewed these incidents and as a result, introduced a requirement for boat owners to regularly undertake an inspection of their boats to ensure the ongoing structural integrity of the keel and rudder. Australian Sailing has adopted the same requirement as part of the Special Regulations for Category 1,2 and 3 races, effective the 1st of January 2022.

While this is a new requirement, the provisions of this new regulation are what most responsible ocean racer boat owners have been routinely doing as part of the annual boat maintenance program.

The required inspection

The objective of the inspection is, with the boat out of the water, to identify any significant signs of stress externally around the keel or rudder structures. Then internally to make sure that the keel attachment and fastenings are in good health (hull supporting structure sound, bolts and backing plates intact, no corrosion or obvious signs of water ingress). Likewise, check the rudder for excessive deflection and that the bearings and their supporting structures are sound and free of any clear signs of stress, improper movement or corrosion.

Visit here to see regulation 3.02.4 for more specific details.

The inspection has to be done within two years of starting a Category 1,2 or 3 race or after an unintentional grounding and it is then the responsibility of the owner to carry out any required remedial repairs.

The inspection has to be carried out by a suitably qualified person and for most boat owners, that would most likely be the experienced shipwright who maintains and repairs the boat. The choice of the "suitably qualified person" is left up to the boat owner who needs to be able to defend his/her choice in the event of an incident.

ORCV Requirements

The new regulation mandates a process that should be part of the normal annual maintenance process. The Club is therefore amending Skipper's annual compliance declaration to include a statement that the required inspection has been undertaken and, with race entries, that the boat has not experienced an unintentional grounding since the keel and rudder were last inspected.

Both the choice of a suitably qualified person and responsibility for undertaking and identified work that may be required are matters for the boat owner.

Owners will not be asked to submit an inspection report as part of their annual safety compliance or race entry procedures. The main thing is to ensure that boat owners include the inspection as part of their annual maintenance program.

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