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Old 07-07-2010, 08:23 AM   #1
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The Dover Enquiry

Draw your own conclusions for the future of the sport from this!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/kent/10534288.stm

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Old 07-07-2010, 08:47 AM   #2
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Draw your own conclusions for the future of the sport from this!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/kent/10534288.stm

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interesting, was there a problem with the boat?.
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Old 07-07-2010, 12:04 PM   #3
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interesting, was there a problem with the boat?.
No idea except that it probably "hooked". Others on Boatmad have greater knowledge than I as to what exactly happened.

Pretty damning report on the RYA and their course approvals and race approvals procedures though - IMHO!
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Old 07-07-2010, 03:41 PM   #4
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was there a problem with the boat?.
No.
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Old 07-07-2010, 03:50 PM   #5
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No fatal accident is ever going to be written off as 'Oh that's OK it's just a racing incident' regardless of whether it is or not.

In fairness these reports are never going to read well for an organiser as the point of them is to make objective criticism with the benefit of that which the organiser never had - hindsight.

Having been involved in a number of HSE investigations involving construction deaths I have yet to see a report that summarises as 'yes everything was perfect and it was just an accident'.

Unfortunately you would be well aware media sensualisation is a part and parcel of the world we live now so expect to see it.

The important thing is for the sport to take what practical considerations they can from a tragic accident without over reaction. Dangerous sport, yes but you shouldn't allow dangers to continue that you can control without loss of enjoyment.
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Old 07-07-2010, 06:56 PM   #6
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No.
thats sad, if there was nothing wrong with the boat why did he stop, if he had kept going he most likely have still been alive, we may never know what happened in them final seconds, but i can't see why it caused so much backlash, it seems to me to be an accident, so the course was tight, did anybody complain?
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Old 07-07-2010, 07:05 PM   #7
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thats sad, if there was nothing wrong with the boat why did he stop,
An accidental 'hook' brought them to a prompt stop. One of those things.
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Old 07-07-2010, 07:33 PM   #8
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It certainly was a tragic racing accident, and it's very sad for family and friends, but boats do hook and some days you just can feel the boats flying fast and loose and just one bad wave and ... I have mentioned before I recall one race where a Phantom hooked hard some way in front and over to the starboard side and a few min's later another phantom hooked driven by Alistair Mcknaulty and just a few seconds later it was our turn, cut my hand by slamming it hard into the dash but as I say unfortunately hooks happen especially in some seas and if your unfortunate enough to have a boat right behind it may go strait over you with as seen in this case terrible results ... some may say then the boat was set up bad, wrong prop choice incorrect ballast wrong trim on motor and tabs, maybe but it still happens and all the above hooks I mentioned happened without a turn in sight
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Old 08-07-2010, 12:11 AM   #9
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I have just read the MAIB report into the Dover accident, what a tragic accident and my thoughts go out the families, friends and relatives affected.

I have no experience of boat racing but however I graduated in engineering design and production, of which a large part of the course was understanding properties of materials, material failures and material selection in design. I have also worked on various projects over the years using various plastics, polymers and composite materials and the following is only my humble opinion. There are a couple of points that I picked up on from the MAIB and the accompanying photos.

The first point I noticed is the catastrophic failure of the polycarbonate helmet. Polycarbonate helmets are not only used for boat racing but also for many other sports, motor sports and other recreational pursuits. Polycarbonate does not offer the protection or material strength of helmets constructed of composite materials containing aramid fibres, one of which goes by the trade name of Kevlar. Depending on the application, design and construction helmets containing aramid fibres can give many more times the strength of polycarbonate helmets. Although in this case due to the horrendous impact it may not have made much of a difference, IMHO anyone boat racing should consider carefully there choice of helmet, as in another situation it could make all the difference. I am also a motorcyclist and have seen this type of failure of polycarbonate helmets many times before, and can tell you that there are not many serious motorcyclists that would entertain a polycarbonate helmet. Slightly excessive may be but I have spent £500 on a helmet in the past and have been told that I must be mad, but my simple reply is “so tell me, what is your head worth then”. For any of you guys out there racing consider carefully your choice of helmet. It really could make a big difference.

My second observation of the report is in connection of the bow towing eye of the second boat that collided with the first. It is not categorically the case but it would appear from the report and accompanying photos that the bow of the second boat rode up the side cockpit area of the first boat. It is also quite visible the deformation of the towing eye and must have had quite a force applied during impact.

This is again only my humble opinion but if the boat had not had a towing eye which would have caused a very high impact on a very small area, the bow may have rode much easier over the side of the boat and spread the load, and it is possible that the structure of the side of the boat may have stayed in better tacked raising the height of the blow to the occupant. Now I am sure that some of you are going to shoot me down in flames and tell me that it is not practical but would it not possible that race boats could have a removable towing eye as do cars, removed during racing. I have thought about this and it could quite possible to have a retro fit removable towing eye to most race boats. My idea would be using the original holes but with countersunk bolts. The back plate would have a internally threaded insert protruding back through hull, centre and parallel to the fixing bolts. When needed a male threaded towing eye could be insert similar to a car towing eye. Now some of you may think this going a bit far, but mascots protruding from bonnets have been outlawed unless spring loaded. If you SVA a motor vehicle any front protruding bolts must have plastic caps. Model aircraft under SAME (the governing body) have a minimum radius for propeller spinners and these are only the ones that spring immediately to mind.

Again it is unlikely that in this incident that above two points would have made much difference but in a future accident it could make a vital difference.
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Old 08-07-2010, 08:40 AM   #10
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What about towing a boat in when it's trying to sink?
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Old 08-07-2010, 08:53 AM   #11
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i can see where you're coming from with the towing eye fred, couple of things, sometimes it's hard enough getting a tow rope on a boat let alone trying to put an eye in when at sea, secondly if you sell this idea the powers to be will want to change all race boats, you can see the mess we're in right now with unworkable or unwantable rules and regs, a lot of boats can't get to that area from the inside anymore.
don't get me wrong safety should be taken seriously, the helmet maybe, with a better helmet it might of pulled his head off, without the boweye taking some of load would the boat have gone straight over him, who knows.
the rya, uim and anybody i've left out have a lot to answer for, but this one was just a bad accident
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:21 AM   #12
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70 page MAIB report here:

http://www.maib.gov.uk/cms_resources...ker_Report.pdf
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:50 AM   #13
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that makes interesting reading, there seems to be conflicting rules from different organisation regarding missed buoys etc, this is confusing!
i know how to make the whole lot safer,,,
K keep
I it
S simple
S stupid
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:53 AM   #14
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With the best will in the world accidents will happen,lookin for someone to blame isnt the way forward,in extreme sports things like this unfortunately do occur,look at formula 1,cars drive into or over each other nearly every race,yet millions are spent on safety,R.Y.A. nor either driver can be blamed,it was an accident,pure and simple.
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:59 AM   #15
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Changing the subject for a moment, the MAIB is one of those Quango’s (with many people on BIG salaries – see their web site) that we could actually do without. Personally I would hope that the current Government Coalition would have them on their “destruct” list of the many useless Quango's that need removing.

In my opinion for what's it worth, the MAIB are a toothless organisation and do not have powers to enforce anything but they do go round in a threatening manner. They certainly put the fear of God into the RYA in this instance.

The problem arises when cases such as the one at Dover go to court. It’s then that Quango’s like the MAIB become effective because the courts will listen to them as the official “experts” (it's the easy option) and put the blame where the MAIB recommends hence the multitude of changes to the Powerboat rules this year.

It’s clear the RYA had become slack in their procedures and that the Dover incident was a wake up call but we didn’t need the MAIB to tell us that in a 70page document that must have cost many thousands of pounds to produce!

The above is my view and mine alone. It’s not intended to cause offence, just an observation!
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Old 08-07-2010, 11:17 AM   #16
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Mike, whilst understanding your frustration, who would you have do the report?

As I said above with a death involved there has to be someone investigate to clearly dispel malpractice and they have done that with their final summary.

I think they have been as objective as they can in stating what could have contributed to the fatality and have left it to governing bodies to decide whether they implement any changes for improvement.

Toothless in this case is possibly just as well so we don't see things like side impact protection or protusions legislated upon.

For me the report raises one unanswered question and that relates to trimming of the boats. It's stated that neither vessel utilised trim throughout the whole of the race prefering to leave an average setting.

That calls into question the stability of the boats in a turn which then raises a question of ability at racing speeds or that the course was clearly too short to allow the boats time to set a racing trim.

Having said that single engine boats can hook end of, and the truth is that the more experienced here have probably learnt that through a few bruised ribs etc rather a classroom.

Extremely unfortunate set of circumstances that we should at least try to take an element of education from.
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Old 08-07-2010, 11:27 AM   #17
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i'm with you old man, seem's the whole country is being bogged down with these type of organisations.
the most danderous sport (statistically) is green bowling, more people die playing bowls than any other, something to do with the age of the players, but you don't here about them being investigated, these safety guys jump on the wagon that will give them prolonged employment.
i'm old school and have been working for about 40yrs with no accidents but i seem to be getting more and more risk assessments with everything that i do and it's making me grumpy
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Old 08-07-2010, 12:52 PM   #18
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Here, here. i think we have seen too many changes within too short a period.

There are jobs that i used to do as a teenager that i am excluded from doing now as a mature adult! Haaarumphhh.
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Old 08-07-2010, 01:03 PM   #19
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There's lots of things I used to do as a teenager that I can't now but it's got nothing to do with legislation
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Old 08-07-2010, 01:23 PM   #20
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When i was writing that i knew id get a reply like yours.
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