Returning, after an excellent previous talk to the Club, was Roger Brydges from the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).  With Lockdown still very much in force, our November Winter Talk was held virtually.  Despite this challenge, the reputation of the speaker attracted an excellent turnout, with 70+ attendees.  It was a challenging medium to use for a talk, with Roger unable to hear feedback from the audience to his fascinating presentation, but the evening was still a success.

The main topic for the evening was the grounding of a Clipper yacht during the 2017-18 race, off the coast of South Africa.  Just a few hours into the third leg of the Round the World race, one of the yachts timed their gybe too late to prevent them running aground on a reef near the coastline.

Although the South African coast may seem a long way from NYC’s normal sailing ground, our local waters are far better charted, and our boats may be considerably smaller, but it was clear how quickly situations sometimes progress to serious incidents.  As with any accident, there was no single cause, but certainly lessons to be learned.  This reflects the objective of the MAIB, which is not to apportion blame, but to reduce the risks for the future.

Keeping to the general theme of the evening, there was a call from the current Uncle Albert holder for any relevant stories to be shared ahead of the awarding of the trophy next month.  Confession is good for the soul, afterall!

12th November 2020