UPDATE 2/10: A captain’s “reckless decision to sail into the well-forecasted path of Hurricane Sandy” was the probable cause of the sinking of a ship off the North Carolina coast in October 2012, the National Transportation Safety Board said in a report released Monday.
The captain and one crewmember died in the accident. Three other crewmembers were seriously injured.
The 16-page report details how a mostly inexperienced crew – some injured from falls, others seasick and fatigued from the constant thrashing of 30-foot seas – struggled for many hours to keep the ships engines running and bilge pumps operating so the seawater filling the vessel would not overtake it.
Read the report here
PORTSMOUTH--The Coast Guard's hearing on the Bounty concluded Thursday with Commander Kevin Carroll still at a loss for the decision by the captain to sail into an oncoming hurricane.
"I attended the Maritime Academy. I've served in the Coast Guard for 18 years and I'm trying to find one person to tell me a ship is safer at sea. I can't do it," said an incredulous Carroll.
For a second time in the hearing the Bounty's Chief Mate John Svendsen answered questions about the readiness of the ship and the orders by Captain Robin Walbridge.
Svendsen says he spoke to Walbridge in private about his concern that the ship should not sail south from New London, CT into the path of Hurricane Sandy.
Svendsen says the captain had his mind set and was not open to suggestions.
"I was very assertive in my conversation and he was not receptive to any of the other options," said Svendsen.
Other questions during Svendsen's testimony were about rotten wood on the Bounty, a lack of safety drills by the crew and the readiness of a bilge pumping system that failed to keep the ship afloat in the storm.