Gaff Schooner Collides With Container Ship – Overseas Report

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The gaff schooner Elbe No. 5 collided with a container ship in the Elbe river (Germany) last weekend. The boat sank after the collision with the rescuers managing to rescue 43 passengers.

The historic 1883 built, 121’ vessel had only just returned to Hamburg’s waters after it had spent eight months in a Danish shipyard undergoing a €1.5 million renovation and was relaunched only days before the collision.

She was struck by a 462′ container ship, the Astrosprinter and suffered serious damage and sank, though rescuers were able to secure the wreck relatively close to the surface.
The container ship continued its voyage, having suffered almost no damage. Apparently, the container ship was out of her channel and likely at fault.
So woodys this serves as a warning to be very careful out there, particularly as the Auckland council continue to expand the container port into OUR harbour…………….
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6 thoughts on “Gaff Schooner Collides With Container Ship – Overseas Report

  1. This incident raises a number of areas of concern. Vessels under 500 T must clear of those over 500T if that vessel is put into a position where she unable to manoeuvre either by virture of the fact she did not have enough depth of water or lack of channel width , therefore the schooner should have kept clear. The schooner made the classic mistake of not assessing correctly the speed at which a motor vessel will cover ground and worse her helmsman made the mistake of trying to tack and risk going into irons ,which she did ,instead of of squaring away and possibly getting away with a near miss. Finally it raises concerns about the ship not waiting to ascertain the condition of casualties. IMHO.


  2. I agree with Cameron – this has nothing to do with harbour channels and lots to do with people in charge of boats.
    Why they continued on a collision course and then decided to tack rather than bear away I can’t understand.
    I also always took note of the golden rule – might is right irrespective of who has the theoretical right of way.


  3. There is footage on line of the last minute or two before the collision from on board “The Wind Borrower”.
    Ample time for smaller vessel to avoid the cock up or at least lessen the end result. They also appear to have some pace on so certainly wernt dead in the water.
    Ample warning signals from the freighter also.
    Plenty of crew could see what was about to take place including the person filming.
    Expanding the harbour for commercial vessels has zippo to do with this event. Its the “drongos behind the guiding sticks” fault. C

    Video added to main story. Alan H

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yeah, Oh two dogged one, but Yankee was a later pilot boat and was steel. Bones still off Avarua?This boat was allowed to lie derelict (not for the only time in her life) She was bought in ’29 and named Wander Bird by one Warwick Tompkins who took her worldwide with paying guests. Went into War service and unattended since then. She was was lying derelict when rescued in the early ’80s by Harold Somers who brought her from the Tompkins family and back from the brink with a lot of help from true believers. This and her history was the subject of the article by Annie Sutter in Wooden Boat issue 55 December 1983. Great read like much of the early Wooden Boat content.
    What? You haven’t got a full set of WoodenBoat? What’s wrong with you?


  5. Didn’t know there were any of the old German pilot schooners still about. (Seems I was nearly right). Irving Johnson’s second “Yankee” was an ex-German pilot schooner. Hope they get her back up and running again.
    And yes! This IS what happens when bureaucrats and developers get hold of your harbour!


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