Last picture of the Alpha 42 in a winter blizzard in NY , Jan 2014
Readers of the Aeroyacht Newsletter will surely recall our Alpha 42 catamaran project. BE GOOD TOO was hull Nr. 1 which was abandoned by her crew during her winter maiden voyage in 2014 off Cape Henry.
It seems that the story has reached full circle. Just as the mighty Gulf Stream current revolves clockwise around the North Atlantic, BE GOOD TOO took a ride for her last adventure. She was left fully afloat and intact. Abandoned by her crew. She alone endured 6 hurricanes, 36 storms and 3 years fending for herself. What a shame.
4 crewmembers, 2 of which had considerable sea time set off on a hastily prepared delivery trip in the worst winter on record. Conditions were so appalling that the boat needed an icebreaker to leave NY and get out of her marina. Few if any tools were aboard and everyone was on a strict time schedule to quickly get back home. Several days out the Alpha 42 encountered fierce weather and one night the skipper reported being suddenly “pushed violently backwards” by what he assumes a rogue wave. This made both rudders unresponsive and after some futile attempts to fix the issue the crew called the Coast Guard to be rescued. One female and 3 males were airlifted by a courageous Coast Guard helicopter crew.
Now the worst happened. The crew DID NOT leave the activated EPIRB aboard to mark the 40′ vessel for other mariners. BE GOOD TOO would for 3 years represent a deadly threat to other small boat sailors.
I am no judge, I was not aboard but the fact that the crew could not sail the boat to safety (as many others have done with damaged rudders), nor had the patience and/know how and tools to fix the issue is one thing – but not leaving a marking device on board to warn other sailors of a floating hazard is CRIMINAL and I wish that there would be regulations in place to prohibit this.
Each year we sail 1000’s of miles, half of which are at night offshore. In the past we hit countless objects that have been lost overboard such as containers or sometimes even whales and we have been lucky to survive these collisions relatively unscathed. Having had the opportunity to mark BE GOOD TOO was consciously avoided by her skipper and crew.