The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has cleared London Duck Tours to resume trips along the Thames, following last year’s mid-cruise fire.
Two vessels have been approved for use, following a Marine Accident Investigation Branch report, which pinpointed the cause of the blaze. It is believed that the boats’ buoyancy foam was to blame for the accidents, which resulted in 30 people being rescued and some passengers jumping into the Thames to avoid the flames.
An MCA spokesperson told the BBC: “The operator has been working to demonstrate that two of its vessels have been improved sufficiently to meet our safety requirements.
“We believe that we should shortly be in a position to issue a short-term certificate to allow them to operate for a period of three months.”
The company said in a statement on its website that it would be announcing the date of its return to the river “shortly”, with a normal service set to resume “as soon as possible”.
French marine engine manufacturer Nanni has expanded its in-board diesel range, with 32 new models due to be unveiled at the Cannes Boat Show (9-14 September)
The new N-series models range from 140hp to 760hp and they will be presented in the UK for the first time at the PSP Southampton Boat Show the following week (11-20 September).
Built in partnership with John Deere Power Systems, the N5, N6, N9 and N13 units further expand the Nanni collection, which features engines from 10hp to 1,800hp.
A spokesperson for Nanni spoke of the company’s great pride in this new tie-up: “Staying faithful to its values and its commitment to provide the best quality to its customers, Nanni has chosen to work with the world’s number one in its field, John Deere.”
Founded in 1952, Nanni is the preferred supplier for many European motorboat manufacturers, including Bénéteau, Jeanneau and Bavaria.
See article at Mototboats Monthly – click here
The RYA has launched a new app that could help to reduce the amount of time it takes the coastguard to track down a missing boat.
RYA SafeTrx, which is compatible with Android and iOS devices, allows users to plot and then upload their passage plan and estimated time of arrival.
If the ETA is exceeded without the trip being completed, then the designated emergency contacts are automatically notified.
Using the data sent by the SafeTrx app during a voyage, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency will be able to pinpoint lost and stricken boats more quickly.
Keith Oliver, head of maritime operations at the MCA, explained why this information is so valuable:
“During a search and rescue incident, the UK coastguard collects vital information about the people and vessels involved.
“When did they set off? Where were they going? When were they due back? What was their last known location?
“These are all vital pieces of the puzzle and the coastguard welcomes any system that can contribute to the information gathering effort. RYA SafeTrx will help provide this information, meaning that valuable time is not lost.”
This technology has been in use in Ireland and Australia for some time, and now the RYA’s adoption allows members to take advantage of the service in UK territorial waters for free.
Non-members can download the app free of charge, and data logging credits are available in bundles of ten for £1.49 or 20 for £2.49.
The app can also deliver performance analytics for those keen to plot their average speed or total distance travelled.
Stuart Carruthers, cruising manager at the RYA, hailed the app as a potentially huge benefit to small vessel owners:
“Although RYA SafeTrx is not intended as a replacement for regular approved safety devices (VHF, APIB, AIS, etc.) it will be beneficial to the one million users of small powerboats, RIBs, PWCs and for dinghy cruisers for whom existing tracking technology is not always practical.
“Until now a simple, cost-effective system of tracking and alerting has not been available for these boat users. When we learned about this app and its enormous safety benefits we knew that we had to bring it to the UK”.
RYA SafeTrx is available to download now from the iTunes app store, while Android users can find the app on the Google Play Store.
See article and video at Motorboats Monthly – click here
Three people were rescued from their sinking yacht in the Indian Ocean – thanks to assistance from the Falmouth Coastguard.
The crew – all British – had been desperately pumping and bailing out the UK-registered vessel as it began taking on water after suffering serious damage to its main rudder.
Falmouth Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) received an emergency positioning beacon alert (EPIRB) from the 45ft yacht at 0830 yesterday morning.
Falmouth MRCC asked the captain of a tanker in the region – the Maersk Mediterranean – to divert to the yacht’s location, around 300 miles south of the Seychelles.
Bad weather, with rough seas and wind speeds in excess of 25 knots, meant the ship’s progress was slower than normal, and the yacht’s crew were preparing to abandon ship and take to a life raft when they were finally rescued at around 0045 this morning.
The Falmouth MRCC had also alerted nearby authorities, including the Seychelles Coastguard, and other resources in the region, but the yacht’s remote location meant that a rapid rescue was not possible.
Falmouth Coastguard Watch Manager, Martin Bidmead, said: ‘We are very relieved that the Maersk Mediterranean was able to reach this yacht in time and rescue the three people on board.
‘As first point of contact for the EPIRB alert, we were able to coordinate the rescue remotely, staying in contact with the yacht and updating crew with the progress of the rescue.’
All three people on board are reported as being uninjured.
Picture: A Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre Operations room
See article at Pratical Boat Owner – klik her
Classic boat lovers are expected to flock to Birdham Pool Marina next month for the first annual Classic Boat Festival.
The inaugural event aims to celebrate traditional boatbuilding, with more than 30 sailboats and powered vessels due to go on display on Saturday 19 July from 10am to 6pm, including models from Triana and Fairey.
Mike Braidley, group operation manager at parent company Castle Marinas, told MBM: “The intention is to grow this free show into a classic boat festival on the south coast.
“We’re surrounded by traditional boatbuilding skills that we really want to bring to the fore, we’ve got two tremendous shipwrights and we really want to show off their skills.”
Highlights include Q&A sessions and advice on restoration from expert boatbuilders, exhibitions from local artists, and a prize draw to win 50% off an annual berth at the marina.
Any classic boat owners wishing to take part in the festival are invited to moor at Birdham overnight for free.
See article at Motorboats Monthly – click here
Following extensive dredging, Edinburgh Marina can again offer fully floating at the pontoon for most boats, with a depth of two metres below chart datum.
The marina, which is jointly owned and managed by Forth Corinthian Yacht Club (FCYC) and Royal Forth Yacht Club RFYC is at Granton, which is well placed for yachtsmen visiting the Forth as a destination or in passage north or south.
It is one of the few places to stop over between Blyth and Peterhead. It is well situated for, although it is some 20 miles from the mouth of the Forth, it is a good stopover to visit Edinburgh, being less than three miles from the city centre.
For more information about visitor berthing around the British coast, see the Summer issue of PBO, in the shops now, with price and facilities listings for 248 marinas and harbours.
Motor Boats Monthly has been to the south of France to test out the new Jeanneau Leader 40 open sportscruiser, which first saw on dry land at the 2013 Paris Boat Show.
Nick also looks at the convertible aft sunbed in the cockpit, as well as the myriad seating options on the Leader 40.
Taking to the water, Nick also comments on visibility, the helm position and how the hull copes with the choppy conditions that we encountered.
Below deck, we take a closer look at the conventional layout, including the dinette, well-stocked galley, both cabins, and the heads.
Nick’s full boat test review is published in the July edition of Motor Boats Monthly, which is out now.
Light winds turned the 2014 event into an endurance test with the slowest ever winner; 715 finishers and 791 retirees. This extremely light winds, at times recording zero knots, turned the 2014 J.P.Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race into an endurance test for its participants.
Held yesterday on Midsummer’s day, the race was one of the longest in the history of the 83-year-old race. There were 715 finishers and 791 retirees; race organisers said it is always regrettable to have more retirees than finishers but there was a very positive response from the majority of competitors nonetheless.
The slowest elapsed time for a line honours boat ever recorded in the race’s history was 08.51.37 achieved by Team Richard Mille on their GC32 foiling multihull – almost three times slower than last year’s winning time of 02.52.15, set by Sir Ben Ainslie’s AC45 catamaran team.
Most of the 1,585 entries started the race around the Isle of Wight in around three knots and bright sunshine and as the hours went by, temperatures rose but wind speed dropped leaving hundreds of boats becalmed and a large proportion of the 16,000 crew desperately seeking ways of making their boats go faster or resorting to stretching out on deck to enjoy the sunny conditions.
There were several standstills for many boats during the race, and other times when it was the tide, rather than the wind, that powered the yachts along.
First to the Needles was Jamie McGarry and Colin Moore’s Swan 45 Eala of Rhu but the going was slow and Sir Ben Ainslie, racing on the Farr 45 Rebel with members of his BAR America’s Cup crew, took longer to complete the first 13 miles than the record-breaking time he took to finish the entire race last year.
Rebel very quickly became involved in a match race with rival Farr 45 Toe in the Water crewed by injured servicemen and women who had served recently in Afghanistan and the lead swapped several times over the 50nms course though it was Capt Lloyd Hamilton’s ecstatic crew who nudged across the finish line ahead of Ainslie and his team of professionals.
‘This means everything to us,’ he said recording a time of 8 hours 51 minutes 39 seconds.
He added: ‘The guys are ecstatic at beating Rebel. They don’t know many of the America’s Cup sailors but they know and love Sir Ben Ainslie, so are thrilled.”
Racing debuts pay dividends
Another big battle to ensue on the water was between the brand new high-performance catamarans, the GC32s Team Richard Mille and Spax Solution making their racing debuts in the Solent.
Former line honours winner Pete Cumming had gathered together a professional crew for Team Richard Mille, including helmsman Paul Campbell-James and proved consistently faster than their rivals.
They took five long hours to reach St Catherine’s Point where the sea breeze kicked in to give the leading boats a big push over the next two hours towards the finish but just as they were within sight of the line, the wind in Stokes Bay died and their final flourish was delayed by a further hour to record a finish time of 8 hours and 51 minutes.
Cumming said: ‘It wasn’t the easiest race but these boats are superb – very fast even in light airs and fun to sail.’
First monohulls in battle royale
First monohull across the finish line was Dutch boat Tonnerre de Breskens, with a time of 9 hours 56 minutes 13 seconds but they too had a battle royale to gain an advantage over Mike Bartholomew’s Tokoloshe II, which trailed in just 22 seconds later after one of the biggest tests of endurance and patience since the Round the Island Race started in 1931.
The first Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust yacht, Scarlet Oyster, crewed by PBO News Editor Laura Hodgetts, trust volunteers and six young people crossed the finishing line at 5.57pm – almost 10 and a half hours after setting off at 7.30am.
A total of 24 teenagers took part on the trust’s five yachts. Dame Ellen and a crew aboard the trust’s flagship yacht Moonspray were forced to retire, after becoming becalmed off Dunose.
Twelve hours after the first start, 246 boats had finished and a further 445 had retired but the rest were still out on the course valiantly trying to make the finish before the cut off time of 10pm.
The Gold Roman Bowl was awarded to a Folkboat, Madelaine, skippered by Edward Donald, who hasn’t quite achieved the record four wins of the Gold Roman Bowl by Edward Heath but he’s nearly there, having won it individually three times and the Donald family has collected this famous trophy four times.
The Tenacity Trophy, awarded annually to the skipper of the last boat home. This year it fell to Stuart Whitmore to win the applause. He crossed the finish line on his Sigma 33, Sixes and Sevens, (IRC3) at 21.51.35, having started his race at 0730 – 14 hours, 21 minutes, 35 seconds later.
Event organiser, the Island Sailing Club, runs the event with support from title sponsor J.P. Morgan Asset Management and the race partners for 2014: Dream Yacht Charter, Haven Knox-Johnston, Henri Lloyd, Nautica Watches, Old Pulteney, Raymarine, Red Funnel, Volvo Car UK.
Broom Boats will take its first step into the brokerage market next month, it has been confirmed. The Norfolk-based boatbuilder will open Broom Brokerage on 1 July, selling new and used boats from Broom Marina in Brundall.
As well as new and used Broom models, the brokerage will also sell other pre-owned premium marque boats.
Haylet Leggett, Greg Houlston, Dan Shephard, Andrew Stone and Jacci Munro will complete the brokerage’s sales team, a statement from Broom added.
Founded in 1898, Broom is one of the largest motorboat manufacturers in East Anglia and most recently launched the 430 semi-displacement model at the Boot Dusseldorf show in January 2014.
Read article at Motorboats Monthly – click here
Sealine F380: First impressions of the new compact flybridge. Nick Burnham from Motorboats Monthly gives his verdict after his world-first test of the brand new Sealine F380.
Motor Boats Monthly has taken the first ever test drive of the brand new Sealine F380 flybridge model. MBM boat tester Nick Burnham was the first journalist in the world to test out the new Sealine and described its performance as “superb”.
Unveiled in January at Boot Dusseldorf 2014, this 38ft flybridge model is the first to be launched in Germany.
Nick said: “Sealine have got this one right. The accommodation is fantastic for a sub 40ft boat, there’s storage everywhere and it goes well too. It’s just what Sealine need in their range right now.”
After 40 years as a staple of the UK boatbuilding industry, Kidderminster-based Sealine went into administration in April 2013 and the name was subsequently bought by German boatbuilder Hanse.
See more at Motorboats Monthly – click here