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SEA Currents: SSV Corwith Cramer
April 16, 2019
Some booming news
34˚ 18.5’ S x 161˚ 48.0’ W
South Pacific Ocean
065˚ Wind: F6 SW
Hello friends! Raffi here from the Seamans with some booming news. While I was tucked in my bunk last night, sleeping hard after a fun, field-day filled afternoon/watch, A watch decided to go out with a bang before the end of evening watch.
Here’s the story, from Captain Jay (with details from A watch): At 22:30, everything was well onboard the Robert C. Seamans. The intrepid Adrienne (Who has requested that her boat nickname be “anemometer”, but the jury is still out on if it’s gonna stick) was on helm, steering a broad reach (and doing a great job), when the wind shifted across the stern of the boat.
The mainsail, suddenly filled with breeze from the opposite direction than it was set up for, started to “back,” and tried to swing across the boat. There is a line rigged on the boom called the preventer, which is in place specifically to keep the boom from swinging across the deck in case of an accidental gybe, and it did its job-maybe a little too well. The forces from the wind on the sail and the preventer caused the boom to snap in half.
Everyone responded calmly to the sudden change in sail plan, and the staff worked to get the boom secured and the mainsail off, while students continued routine boat duties.
Unfortunately, Tristan’s sail repair skills (and ship building regulations) do not extend to onboard welding, so the main boom will be out of commission until Tahiti at the soonest, but we’re currently making good speed under the forestays’l and storm trys’l.
All in all, an exciting night (which I managed to sleep through), and everyone is doing well (if a little tired and seasick).
‘Til next time,
- Raffi Altman-Allen, C Watch, Roger Williams University