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seatime
17-02-2006, 06:51 AM
The skipper of the citycat that collided with the rowing craft has had the charge of operating his vessel unsafely, dismissed.
This case highlighted some important areas in the Rules of the Road. Failure to keep a proper lookout and operating at an unsafe speed had been the prosecution's argument.
Interestingly the rowers were required to display a light between sunset and sunrise, the accident occured about 6.10, sunrise on that day was documented as 6.20. The rowers were operating illegally, and they and 4 other school rowing crews had been pinged by the Water Police for the same breach 2 weeks earlier. Another interesting point, 4 commercial operators using the river were asked what's the flashing yellow light on the Citycats used for. All 4 got it wrong! why they thought Citycats operate in the non-displacement mode is anyones guess.

Lone_Wolf
17-02-2006, 07:39 AM
I am surprised that, to date, the coaches or school have not been viewed as being responsible for the students and their welfare.
As for the Citycat operator, I sincerley hope he can get on with his life now. The accident involving injury to others, being charged, the court process and the media attention would have created a huge trauma in his own life.

chanquetas
17-02-2006, 07:40 AM
There was a yacht got run over off NZ about 10 years ago, same thing, no lights at night, and eveyone whinged about the ship that hit it.

No lights - No rights!

Gutsy
17-02-2006, 08:06 AM
I also hope the Citycat driver can get on with his life. I'm sure all the media attention, court case, etc would cause a huge stress to him and his family.

DR
17-02-2006, 08:08 AM
on last nights news the rowers claimed that a couple of weeks earlier they were told by water police that they did not require lights on the skiff????

Panasonic
17-02-2006, 08:13 AM
Ferry smashes rowers

16aug05

A SCHOOLGIRL rowing crew narrowly escaped serious injury today when their boat was sliced in half by a Brisbane River ferry.

Nine girls from St Margaret's Anglican Girls School were aboard the rowing boat when it was struck by the high-speed City Cat ferry near inner-suburban Newstead Park about 6.05am (AEST), police said.

Two girls, both aged 16, were taken to Royal Brisbane Hospital.

One was treated for cuts to the top of her head, and the other was treated for elbow injuries.

The crew's boat was sliced in half on impact with the ferry.






"I'm just glad we didn't see a terrible tragedy this morning," Brisbane Lord Mayor Campbell Newman, whose council is responsible for the ferries, said.

School principal Vicki Waters said the City Cat apparently did not see the smaller boat in the dim early morning light.

"The coxswain had seen the City Cat coming towards (the crew)it, had screamed to the girls to get out of the boat, a couple of the girls didn't hear the City Cat hit them," Ms Waters said.

The crew members, who were training for this weekend's Head of the River rowing regatta at Wivenhoe Dam, west of Brisbane, would receive counseling, she said.

The school would also review its rowing safety procedures.

"There are very stringent risk-management processes that we have in place anyway," Ms Waters said.

"The girls, for their early morning rows, do have a flashing light on the boat and on their cap, so they are ... normally, visible."

Brisbane City Council transport committee chairman Graham Quirk said visibility was poor was at the time of the accident.

Police are still investigating the cause of the accident, and have impounded the City Cat.

finga64
17-02-2006, 08:14 AM
I also work on the principle of give way (respect) to anything bigger then ya no matter what the rules say.

Couldn't the girls hear a CityCat coming?? They're not that quite and not really that big so you can't get out of the way.

My little tinny is no match to the bigger boats and cruisers down the Pin (whether I'm underway or anchored or drifting) and they sometimes just don't care about rules or just don't see you [smiley=cool2.gif]. Pooed my pants once #[smiley=confused.gif] [smiley=stunned.gif], very wary now #[smiley=thumbsup.gif].

chanquetas
17-02-2006, 08:21 AM
I also hope the Citycat driver can get on with his life. #I'm sure all the media attention, court case, etc would cause a huge stress to him and his family.

Good point Gutsy.
And what about his loss of income since the incident? The news report said that he had been reinstated, and he was only awarded $2000 to cover legal costs. But what were he and his family surviving on since August?

seatime
17-02-2006, 08:34 AM
There is a bit more to the story of course, the police had actually booked the crews 2 weeks earlier then rescinded 2 or 3 of the tickets after pressure from the schools, one was St Margaret's.
In my book the coach and school should be held responsible. One of the school staff was heard to state in front of officials, laughing
"we've been telling those girls to wear their lights every day, but you know girls, ha, ha ,ha". I'll bet the parents aren't laughing now.
The parents are now free to sue the school for "lack of duty of care" and I hope they win big time. Bris C.C. expect a lot from their skippers, they want Master IVs with high speed experience, these people don't grow on trees. They want schedules and timetables kept spot-on, the skippers are very good at what they do.
There are lessons for us all here. cheers

Jeremy
17-02-2006, 08:55 AM
the accident occured about 6.10, sunrise on that day was documented as 6.20.

We all know that it gets light well before sunrise. I wasn't there but I bet there was good visibility at 6.10 am. The girls may have been found to be legally in the wrong, but IMHO the skipper should have been able to see them if he was keeping a proper lookout.

Jeremy

chanquetas
17-02-2006, 09:04 AM
Jeremy,
Im not sure those times are accurate. I heard that the incident actually happened about 30mins or more before sunrise.

Cheers,
Jake

seatime
17-02-2006, 09:29 AM
Yes there were different times quoted, 5.50 other skippers testified they heard a vhf transmission from the citycat. Twilight is a dangerous time of the day and difficult for lookouts. I heard there was mist or light fog in that part of the river that morning. Quite often in cases like this blame is apportioned to both parties 80%-20%, 90%-10% etc. In this case it seems to be 100%-0%, don't have all the details.
In nearly all marine incidents the cause comes back to failure to keep an adequate lookout and operating at an unsafe speed.
These are without doubt the two most important rules in the Collision Regs.
In this case the rowers were found to be not keeping an adequate lookout and not displaying the correct light signals. They could well be charged, but unlikely. It's still hard to understand how he didn't see them, but we don't have all the facts and thank dog no one died.

seatime
17-02-2006, 09:32 AM
sorry, correct "marine incidents" to collisions, tks

Jeremy
17-02-2006, 09:38 AM
# Yes there were different times quoted, 5.50 other skippers testified they heard a vhf transmission from the citycat. Twilight is a dangerous time of the day and difficult for lookouts. I heard there was mist or light fog in that part of the river that morning. Quite often in cases like this blame is apportioned to both parties 80%-20%, 90%-10% etc. In this case it seems to be 100%-0%, don't have all the details.
# # In nearly all marine incidents the cause comes back to failure to keep an adequate lookout and operating at an unsafe speed.
These are without doubt the two most important rules in the Collision Regs.
# In this case the rowers were found to be not keeping an adequate lookout and not displaying the correct light signals. They could well be charged, but unlikely. It's still hard to understand how he didn't see them, but we don't have all the facts and thank dog no one died.

point taken. I wasn't there and didn't hear all the evidence. I'd hate to be charged over an incident which I thought wasn't my fault.

Jeremy

12Ply
17-02-2006, 11:38 AM
The parents are now free to sue the school for "lack of duty of care" and I hope they win big time.

As a family friend of one of the rowers families, I think you'll find that no thought of starting civil action against anyone has even crossed their mind, they are happy that their daughter is OK.
Of course stern questions have been asked of the school.

Seems to be a very "American" ( for want of a better term ) to sue everyone you can after an accident.

rando
17-02-2006, 12:51 PM
The newsfilm of the rowing shell being recovered showed it was quite light at that time. ( granted it was taken after the time of collision)
Remember these rowing shells are 60ft long and that area of the river is quite well lit. I fish near there regularly and it is quite easy to see most types of vessels.even at night.
As to the Citycats being audible,,,, wrong, they are almost silent and so quick they would be on top of you before you could take evasive action.Further the racing shells are very slow to manouvre, really only good in a straight line.

Its very fortunate that this was not a tragedy,I guess now everyone will be more careful.
rando

imnotoriginal
17-02-2006, 03:55 PM
Glad to hear it. #I catch the citycats to uni and i have a mate who is a deckhand on their boats. #I have seen the stupidity displayed by some of these rowing boats (though only of an afternoon, not suring the morning) and it is frightening how these vessels are sometimes navigated so close to the far bigger cats. #I too hope the citycat master at the centre of this is able to put all this behind him, it can't have been an easy time for him these last months.
Joel
p.s. Rando- I can hear the citycat from UQ ferry terminal before it rounds the corner of the river, so I don't know that they are that silent. Perhaps not as loud as some, but they still make a noise.

MADKEEN
17-02-2006, 04:14 PM
I was just wondering how come the rowing coxsain was not charged for putting the crew in the direct path of the citycat as it would of been full light at that time of the morning and i have allways thought that passanger ferrys on the river have right off way.

seatime
17-02-2006, 04:35 PM
Another thing to consider is the range of visibility of your nav lights.
I remember a small boat was struck by a ship off the Sunshine Coast a few years ago. Both vessels were held to blame, the ship for not keeping a proper lookout, and the small boat who had the wrong globe in his allround white light. The investigators found the globe wattage to small to show 2 miles. At best it could only be seen half a mile.
There are other cases, lenses faded and restricting light, insufficient voltage supply and incorrectly fitted globes.
If it comes to the crunch they will go thru you like a dose of salts until a fault is found. The best insurance is be on top of all safety gear, easter bunnys' not far away, so neither is a blitz! regards

bidkev
17-02-2006, 05:07 PM
I was just wondering how come the rowing coxsain was not charged for putting for crew in the direct path of the citycat as it would of been full light at that time of the morning and i have allways thought that passanger ferrys on the river have right off way.

It was actually stated on the news that the cox had admitted to clearly seeing the Cat about to cross their path, but gave instructions to carry on rowing as she thought that at their current speed, their boat would clear the oncoming Cat........a judgement call *totally* dependent on the cox's knowledge of the discipline of her crew......too much of a responsibility for a kid in my book.

I myself have been in a similar situation..... You're travelling at speed and don't think that you have time to stop before being hit, so you continue (accelerate) thinking that the chance of you clearing the path is better ie, you think you're going to get hit so you try to accelerate out of danger. I would hazard a guess, based on the circumstances that befell me, that the crew either panicked, or hesitated, and instead of accelerating, slowed, or stopped rowing altogether, thereby giving them no chance of clearing the oncoming Cat. Probably simply looked for guidance as to what to do, (which most {unprepared}kids, as opposed to a disciplined adult team might do) This resulted in a slowing of the boat when it would otherwise have cleared.

I've worked with kids through adventure training for 25yrs, both in the educational and military field, and the most common factor in nearly all accidents is the instructor's/coach's failure to realise that (badly trained) kids respond more slowly than adults, and in a lot of cases, don't respond at all, but simply hope for the best, (freeze) that someone will pull 'em out of the shit.

IOW, Those who should be more responsible, (the "amateur" coaches looking for Brownie points) fail to teach kids responsibility/discipline/self reliance, but ironically, *expect* them to behave in a disciplined responsible manner. Those kind of activities, task (todays) kids far beyond their capabilities. To illustrate: It has been disclosed that the kids didn't like wearing the lights....if that was the case, they were acting like kids and shouldn't have been tasked with an adult activity unlesss they behaved as a responsible adult. By adult activity, I mean an activity whereby your safety depended on your self-discipline, knowledge/skill of your activity, and full knowledge and preparedness for the likelihood of danger.

These were kids who, judging by the school's reputation would be tasked more tham most via schoolwork/homework and yet were up before the crack of dawn. Had they yet had breakfast which is essential to get the old grey matter working? Think how your kids present in the morning.......I don't think mine wake up till the 2nd lesson ;D

Just trying to illustrate the many factors that could be involved.

Based on my past involvement with Mountain Rescue, I hate to say it, and I apologise in advance if this offends anyone in the educational field, but if Oz is anything like the UK, then too many schools/teachers take it upon themselves to train kids in activities that they really are not qualified enough to be involved in. They go up mountains in joggers, cross swollen streams without a guide rope, canoe in open ocean without spray decks and aren't taught capsize drill etc. The Brownie points become all encompassing, and logic and common sense goes out the window. It is only because the weather is kinder here that there isn't a higher accident/mortality rate in outdoor pursuits, than would otherwise be the case.

Excuse my rant, but I've picked up the pieces in the past, and putting kids at risk really pisses me off.

kev

If you are willing to admit you are wrong when you are wrong, you are all right.

seatime
17-02-2006, 05:12 PM
12ply,
If your wanting a better term than "American" try "Solicitor" or "Lawyer". cheers Steve.

bidkev
17-02-2006, 05:21 PM
Meant to add that it certainly wasn't an "Act of God" and if the skipper of the Cat isn't responsible, then ask yourself, who is?

Someone, right now, is running around like a headless chicken trying to cover their tracks. The only saving grace of this, is that thankfully, none of the kids were seriously injured, and I think that may well be purely by good fortune than anything else.

kev

If you came and you found a strange man teaching your kids to punch each other, or take drugs, or particpate in unsafe sex, or trying to sell them all kinds of products, you'd kick him right out of the house, but here you are; you come in and the TV is on, and you don't think twice about it.

seatime
17-02-2006, 05:27 PM
Television the drug of a nation breeding ignorance and feeding radiation.

rando
17-02-2006, 05:44 PM
Quote from Imnotoriginal " At UQ I can hear the cats before they round the bend". No doubt your right,, but try the same thing near Kingsford -Smith Drive, #you'd be lucky to hear it as it went over the top of you.
Quite often when I fish there the cats come flying past from the hamilton Jetty and I havent even heard them approach, #completely masked by the traffic noise.
I agree with Kingtin on his points about #tasking. Furthermore when I was a rower we were accompanied by a coach in a tinny. How can they train without a coach to guide their form and keep them focused.

Kev
the points about pommie kids getting in the &#!7 in the outdoors, mmaaatee. THEY'RE POMS!!!! :D :D :D
rando

Richo1
18-02-2006, 08:15 AM
Spot the rowers!

Richo1
18-02-2006, 08:15 AM
Forgot to attach! :-?Spot the rowers!

Richo1
18-02-2006, 08:20 AM
You will see at least 3 sculls at the top of the screen!
Thanks for all your positive comments and understanding from the city cat perspective. Bob is a regular visitor to the Ausfish site and a mad keen fisho! By now he would have read these comments.

Regards Richo

Richo1
18-02-2006, 08:23 AM
PS: These photos were taken at 0550hrs at the University Ferry Pontoon. Hope this season they have learnt a few lessons from this unfortunate event.

Cheers

bidkev
18-02-2006, 08:50 AM
<snip>

Kev
the points about pommie kids getting in the &#!7 in the outdoors, mmaaatee. THEY'RE POMS!!!! :D :D :D
rando



;D Nah rando........they're just kids........it's the adults who get 'em in strife who are the Poms :-[ ;D

kev

Karl Marx's Mother: If Karl, instead of writing a lot about capital, had made a lot of it ... it would have been much better.

MAD-MIC
21-02-2006, 09:06 AM
PS: These photos were taken at 0550hrs at the University Ferry Pontoon. Hope this season they have learnt a few lessons from this unfortunate event.

Cheers

G'day Richo

To be the devil's advocate it must be pointed out that the area that you have taken the photos is a lot darker than that of the accident location. The stretch of river at the uni is a lot more closed in with trees etc, and there is not as many lights from surrounding areas like there is along Kingsford Smith drive.

MADKEEN
21-02-2006, 11:47 AM
Mad mic i think the point Richo 1 is making is that their don't have any nav lights on at all.
So how in hell would you have any chance of seeing them at all.

hussy
25-03-2006, 09:33 PM
go to a public school would solve the problem. how many sculling teams are from public schools if they were they would have had lights bob h

rick_k
26-03-2006, 12:33 AM
I was in a sculling team from a state school.

We didn't need light, the pub's were sufficient.

And I don't mean to trivialise the trauma of the girls or the skipper.

Experience is something you get just after you need it

Rick k

hussy
26-03-2006, 08:57 AM
that was good rick , i wish i had thought that one up .bob h