A Very Close Call

Report Text:

I was heading towards the harbour entrance (in my 25ft yacht) doing approx. 1.5 knots, when I noticed a speed boat heading straight towards us.  It became obvious he had not seen us and was going to hit the boat.  My son and I ducked down in the cockpit; the speedboat hit us on the port side causing extensive damage to the hull.  The speedboat then travelled over the top of the yacht (the prop causing more damage) destroying the rigging and bringing down the mast which snapped in two.

We were extremely lucky to come away from the accident uninjured.

CHIRP Comment

This was a serious incident which could easily have resulted in injury or death and could just as easily have been avoided if Rule 5 (Lookout) and Rule 6 (Safe Speed) had been observed.  These two rules form a key part of the RYA’s Sea Sense campaign:

  • Cut your speed
  • Look around & be aware

The reporter was unaware that this incident could have been reported to the MAIB and unfortunately when they were informed too much time had passed for them to conduct a meaningful investigation.  In circumstances such as these, people should not hesitate to contact the Coastguard and/or the Police, where a criminal act may have been committed.