Bermuda to Azores: Yacht Abandoned due to Rudder Failure

(Published June 1 – updated June 2 and again June 20) – Halfway between Bermuda and the Azores the Grand Soleil ’50 “Boingo Alive” was abandoned by her owner and crew when she suffered rudder failure. After the owners appealed to the cruising community for help in recovering their yacht, it was announced that no attempt would be made to recover the vessel. On June 14 she was sighted approximately 620NM WSW of the Azores.

Published 4 years ago

Boing Alive motoring wit no sails up in one of world cruising club's events
Yacht Boingo Alive, courtesy of WCC.

Update June 20, 2019

Reported by S/V Rockhopper and passed to Noonsite by the SSCA:

On Friday, June 14, while on passage from Bermuda to the Azores, we spotted the abandoned vessel Boingo Alive approximately 620 nm WSW of the Azores. Our last position on the vessel was 2330UTC at 34 47’N 042 44’W. The vessel was drifting ESE at 2 knots (in light westerly winds).

The vessel has a working AIS and it was visible at 11nm. The AIS gave the MMSI number 269105440 and name Boingo Alive with a 16m length. The boat was visible sporadically on radar at 12nm and we had a strong radar target at 8nm in calm conditions.

We approached the white monohull sailboat and took photographs. The name of the boat was covered by an emergency rudder. The boat is a Grand Soliel 50 and is in good condition with the headsail securely rolled and the mainsail well secured to the boom. It was not sitting low in the water and wasn’t exhibiting any signs of water intrusion. A wind generator was visible.

We were previously informed this is an abandoned vessel and did not attempt to contact or board the vessel. We did not notice any lights (as we were there before sunset), but after sunset, we looked back and noticed a single white light which is assumed to be the vessel’s anchor light.

S/V Rockhopper

Update June 2, 2019

The latest word from the owners and insurers of “Boingo Alive” is that they have decided not to attempt to recover the vessel.

The vessel, therefore, remains a hazard to shipping – half way on the rhumb line between Bermuda and the Azores (a very popular route at this moment in time).

Many cruisers had responded to the request for assistance (see below) which only reaffirms the selfless nature of the cruising community.

Original News Item June 1, 2019

Yacht “Boingo Alive” is a Grand Soleil 50 that was recently abandoned between Bermuda and Horta, Azores, by the owner and crew following a rudder failure. The 6 crew are safe and healthy after being picked up by 2 passing vessels.

The owners would like to attempt to rescue the boat using the hospitality of an Azores-bound yacht leaving Bermuda in the coming days.

They will build an emergency tiller to take with them in order to navigate, once again towards Horta. There are 4 rescue crew looking for a ride and some “stand by” assistance would also be needed as they prepare the yacht for the next leg to Horta.

The location of “Boingo Alive” is known as the abandoned vessel is transmitting location positions every 12 hours, which should continue for the next few weeks.

If there are any vessels heading from Bermuda to the Azores that would consider assisting, please contact Duncan Sweet immediately at Mid Atlantic Yacht Services in Faial, Horta ([email protected]).

The boat owner/crew can be in Bermuda by Tuesday or Wednesday of the week of June 3rd.

Duncan Sweet
Mid Atlantic Yacht Services
[email protected]

Our thanks to Joan Conover of the SSCA for forwarding this information to Noonsite.

Noonsite has not independently verified this information.

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