Practical Boat Owner: A piece of metal recovered from the sea off the Isles of Scilly looks to be debris from an American space rocket.
It was reported to the UK Coastguard yesterday afternoon, which immediately issued a warning to shipping in the area.
The debris was recovered with the help of local professional boatman, before being towed into New Grimsby and is currently securely held on the beach at Tresco.
Martin Leslie, coastal area commander, said: ‘The markings show an American flag. It looks like it’s an American rocket and seems most likely to be the unmanned Space X Falcon 9 which blew up shortly after take-off from Cape Canaveral in June.
‘We’re grateful for all those who helped in its recovery – it was a great example of the community working together.’
Yachting Boating World: Being the victim of boat theft is a nasty experience so we’ve got our top 10 tips on how to keep both your vessel and your belongings safe.
Whether big or small, marine crime has a big impact on its victims and can generate fear among boating communities. The first step to tackling the problem is ensuring that you’ve done everything you can to protect yourself from boat theft.
The following tips should help you to have peace of mind that you’ve left your boat and its belongings as secure as they can be.
1. Never leave anything valuable on display, this includes items lose in the cockpit or on deck such as rope and fenders.
2. If you can, take any valuables off the boat with you, or make sure you lock them away and keep the curtains drawn when the boat is empty so thieves can’t see inside. If you’re unable to take some items with you, ensure you mark them and photographs of the item.
3. Stickers stating that all valuables have been removed from the boat is also another good deterrent.
4. Make sure you use strong padlocks to secure any cupboards. Fit good strong locks and hinges where possible and invest in an alarm if one can be placed on the vessel.
5. Keep your life raft and engine secure as these are some of the most valuable items on your boat. You can get locks specifically designed for outboard engines that hold up against strong attempts at removal.
6. If you need to step away from the ignition, always take the key with you.
7. Keep a list of all the serial numbers on valuables like your radio, navigation equipment or outboard engine. In the event that your boat is broken into, you’ll have copies to pass the police, making it easier for them to trace stolen items back to you. It’s also worth making a note of any scratches or marks your equipment has, as it could help identify it in the event it is stolen.
8. Mark everything you buy for your boat with your postcode and contact details.
9. Keep your boat keys separate to your engine keys, so should either of them be stolen, a thief won’t have access to both.
10. Make sure you’re part of the Boatmark scheme, which will see your boat given an electronic tag, programmed with a unique 14-character Hull Identification Number.
If you’re concerned about theft in your area, consider setting up a watch with your local sailing club or motor group so that vessels are checked over regularly. Frequent patrols should also help deter thieves from targeting you in the first place.
Those who do become victims of marine crime are encouraged to contact their local police force on 101. In the event that anything is stolen from your boat, it’s worth checking sites such as eBay and Gumtree in case whoever stole your property attempts to sell it on. You should contact the police if you recognise any items being sold online that you believe to be yours.
Motorboat & Yachting: The French boating giant has announced that it will be launching the Bénéteau GT46 at next month’s Paris Boat Show.
Not content with the impending launch of the Swift Trawler 30, Beneteau has revealed that it will also be launching a new 44ft sportscruiser at the 2015 Paris Boat Show (December 5-13) in the form of the Bénéteau GT46.
As the pictures above show, it bears more than a striking resemblance to the Beneteau GT40, which was launched this summer.
However, the new arrival will also come with a full-beam owners cabin amidships as well as a forecabin that can be set up as either a double bed or a V-shaped twin berth.
A three-cabin layout with bunk beds replacing the lower saloon will also be offered as an alternative.
Power will come from a choice of Volvo Penta engine set-ups, either IPS 600 or twin 400hp sterndrives.
This should carry the Bénéteau GT46’s second generation Air Step planning hull to a top speed of more than 30 knots.
However, the modestly sized 900l fuel tank means this model will be more suited to short-range coastal cruising than tackling long passages.
The main galley is situated on the lower decks to free up more socialising space in the open-plan cockpit/saloon, although those looking to cook al fresco can make use of the transom wetbar and grill.
Other key features include electrically opening side windows, curved galley skylight, and high-low hydraulic bathing platform.
Motorboat & Yachting: Spanish police are searching for a yacht dealer from Liverpool as a suspect in the disappearance 32-year old mother Lisa Brown. Police believe the Scottish woman may have been abducted.
Brown was last seen at her home in southern Spain, near Gibraltar, on 4 November.
Brown was first suspected missing when she failed to pick up her eight-year-old son from school in the town of San Roque, where she was living and working.
Spain’s Civil Guard police force, which is investigating the case, believes Brown may have been abducted by her boyfriend, Simon Corner, and taken to sea. Corner has also reportedly disappeared, and has not been seen at the marinas he regularly visited in his yacht.
Brown’s home has been sealed off and searched for clues and DNA samples. Dogs and divers have searched the area and the Guadiaro River near Brown’s home and found no trace, and the Civil Guard has enlisted the help of the Royal Gibraltar Police in their search for the missing couple.
Brown’s parents have travelled to Spain, and Brown’s former partner, Tony Tomillero, is looking after their child.
Brown is understood to have lived in Dumbarton, Scotland, before moving to Spain.
The Foreign Office has confirmed that it is liaising with local authorities and providing assistance to the family of a missing British national.
Motorboat & Yachting: The number of superyachts available for charter in Spanish waters has risen significantly over the past two years, according to a new report.
The Spanish Government’s decision to drop matriculation tax has given a massive helping hand to the local superyacht charter market, according to figures recently released by the Spanish boating association AEGY.
In its 2015 report, AEGY reveals that there are now 86 yachts over 20m that are currently available for charter in the Balearics, compared with just 29 in 2013, before the matriculation tax laws changed.
As a result, the Balearic superyacht charter market is now worth €12.5m (£8.8m) a year to the Spanish economy in terms of taxes and local spending.
Back in 2012, matriculation taxes were bringing in just €4m for the whole of Spain, so AEGY argues that the decision to drop this levy on superyacht charters was the right one.
Diego Colon, president of the AEGY, said: “We recognise that there is still work to do to ensure that the bureaucratic and fiscal procedures related to chartering and operating superyachts in Spain are simplified and streamlined.
“However we are confident that these statistics will strengthen and support our lobbying initiatives.” He added that six of the eight major international brokerage companies now have offices on Mallorca.
The AEGY report also estimates that there are 600 superyachts (over 24m) currently available for charter in the Mediterranean, and predicts the total for Spain is likely to hit triple figures by the time the 2016 superyacht charter season rolls around.
Motorboat & Yachting: The Princess Yachts fraud trial has got underway at Plymouth Crown Court, with former facilities manager Glyn Thompson in the dock.
The former facilities manager of Princess Yachts has gone on trial at Plymouth Crown Court for defrauding the firm out of more than £1million.
Glyn Thompson, 57 of Peverell, is accused of carrying out a complex Princess Yachts fraud plot via a front company called Construction Solutions South West.
He set up the firm with Darren Tallon, 43 of Plympton, who is also on trial for fraud, the Plymouth Herald reports.
The trial, which began last week, is expected to run until January 2016, but Princess Yachts managing director Chris Gates has already taken the stand to give evidence.
He told the court that Mr Thompson was a “very good manipulator” and admitted that the firm did not apply due diligence when signing off on the contracts he recommended.
Mr Thompson was appointed as facilities manager by Princess Yachts in 2009 after his construction business went bust.
Prosecutor Andrew Maitland claimed in his opening statement that the defendant advised Mr Gates to set a maximum spending limit for work on the South Yard of Devonport Dockyard.
However, when sub-contractors supplied a much lower quote for the job, Construction Solutions South West would “pocket the difference”, the court heard.
It is alleged that the company profited by more than £100,000 from two major projects, as well as many smaller deals between 2010 and 2013. In some cases this amounted to a “50% mark-up”, the prosecution added.
The conspiracy was only uncovered when an innocent supplier tipped off Ian Duffin, former Finance Director of Princess Yachts, via e-mail in July 2013, triggering a police investigation.
Mr Duffin, who has also given evidence, told the court: “There was a huge level of trust between the members of the management team. We respected each other.”
Mr Thompson’s assistant Roger Truen and two other men have already pleaded guilty in the ongoing Princess Yachts fraud case. The trial continues.
Practical Boat Owner: The Coastguard is appealing for information after yacht wreckage was found at Redcar Beach, on the north east coast of England, yesterday morning.
Investigations indicate the vessel was an Oday 22 sailing yacht and wreckage colours are blue, white and red with a section of the stern marked Hartlepool.
Hartlepool and Skinningrove Coastguard Rescue Teams conducted a search of the area after the wreckage was discovered.
The Coastguard would like to eliminate the possiblity that anyone is in difficulty and if you have information about this vessel please contact Humber Coastguard Operations Centre on 01262 672317 or call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.
Practical Boat Owner: A yachtsman has donated his £25,000 boat to the cause of migrants and refugees who are facing a cold winter in Calais camps.Contango, the yacht that is being sold is to raise money for building shelters in Calais.
Boat owner Michael de Petrovsky from Jersey visited the camps with aid and construction workers and was so touched by the plight of people living there that the pensioner has now given his seven-berth racing cruiser Contango to volunteer aid worker Ghazi Najib to aid the cause.
Mr Najib says the boat is on sale and the money raised will be used to build emergency shelters in the French port town. He told PBO that more than 300 shelters are needed at a cost of $1,700 each; each shelter can accommodate 20 people and provide facilities for eating and lighting.
Mr de Petrovsky is also willing to continue paying the boat’s £350 a month mooring fees until it is sold.
The yacht is being sold privately by Mr Najib who saidL ‘Every penny counts at the moment before the winter hit.’
Interested buyers can call Mr Najib on 07797 862492 or email email@example.com
Motorboat & Yachting: A MAIB report into the grounding of container ship Lysblink Seaways has revealed that the officer on watch was drunk at the time of impact.
DFDS Seaways has reiterated its zero tolerance policy on alcohol consumption, after a Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) report found that one of its skippers was drunk at the wheel earlier this year.
On February 18, the 129m cargo vessel Lysblink Seaways ran agroundon the west coast of Scotland near the port of Kilchoan.
The grounding happened at 0232, when AIS tracking data revealed that the 7,500 tonne container ship was travelling at 14 knots.
The MAIB report explains the cause of the incident, saying: “During the evening, while off duty in his cabin, the chief officer made a private telephone call which caused him anxiety, after which he consumed about 0.5 litres of rum.”
The chief officer, a 36-year-old Russian male, took over as the officer on watch at midnight. The vessel began to deviate significantly from its planned route at 0211, and at 0212 the radar alarm sounded and was reset without any change of course as the ship left the Sound of Mull.
The report concludes that “the vessel grounded when the officer on watch lost situational awareness due to his consumption of alcohol,” but does not reveal whether he had fallen asleep or not before the collision at 0232.
Following the grounding, Stornoway Coastguard and RNLI Tobermorey were called to the scene and reported no injuries to the nine crewmembers, although 25 tonnes of oil were spilled into the sea.
Later examinations deemed the vessel a constructive total loss due to damage to the hull and as a result it was scrapped.
DFDS Seaways says that it operates a “zero alcohol policy on board vessels”, and since the grounding the firm has removed bonded stores of alcohol from some of Lysblink Seaways’ sister vessels.
Gert Jakobsen, vice president of communications at DFDS Group, told MBY: “The day after the incident the chief officer was no longer an employee of ours.
Gert also explained that the 59-year-old Norwegian master in charge of Lysblink Seaways was “due for retirement” after the voyage and so was not subjected to any disciplinary proceedings.
Motorboat & Yachting: Grammy award winning singer Billy Joel has turned his hand to yacht design once again with the 57ft Vendetta.
Billy Joel has teamed up with Zurn Yacht Design to create a new 57ft motorboat, which was unveiled at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show earlier this month.
Vendetta is a 57ft commuter yacht, which the Grammy award-winning singer designed to get him from his Long Island estate to the centre of New York City.
A modified V-hull and twin 1,300hp MAN diesel engines mean it is capable of an impressive top speed of 47 knots, despite weighing in at more than 18 tonnes.
Key features include seating space for six in the 1920s-style saloon and an open layout below decks, which includes a galley, settee and heads compartment up in the bows.
Billy Joel has a strong track record with designing motor yachts – his previous launch, a 38ft Zurn runabout, has been reproduced more than 50 times in the past ten years.