Pilot Boat Damaged After ‘Contact With Reef’

May 7, 2021 | 33 Comments

[Updated with video] The Government vessel St. David “made contact with a reef” and “sustained damage,” the Government has confirmed

A Government spokesperson said, “It has been confirmed by the Ministry that on Thursday, May 6th at 6:48am, while on a training exercise en route to North Rock Beacon, the Government vessel St. David made contact with a reef in the vicinity of the Northeast Breaker Beacon. The vessel sustained damage, and the four crew onboard were not injured. The incident is now under investigation.”

Photos of the boat being towed from the east end to the west end yesterday:

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (2)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (3)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (4)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (5)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (6)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (7)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (8)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (9)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (10)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (11)

Pilot Boat Bermuda May 7 2021 (12)

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Category: Accidents and fires, All, News

Comments (33)

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  1. SustainedDamage says:

    Sustained Damage? They hit the reef at 24kts. Ripped the engines off the mounts. Ripped the transmissions off the engines. Shafts / props…ruined. They are lucky the boat didn’t sink on the spot and it will be out of commission for…months?

    Who among us has not touched the bottom unintentionally? But you would hope that Bermuda’s premier pilot boat might have had better ‘luck’.

    • sandgrownan says:

      They do say there are three types of boaters – those that have run aground, those that are going to run aground, and liars.

      But ploughing through a heavily reefed area at 25 knots…

  2. Wahoo says:

    Was this really a training exercise or were these guys out on a joy ride? I have seen the videos and that boat is a mess! Taxpayer is on the hook big time – again!

    • Lucky shot says:

      Thank god for insurance

      • Question says:

        No one mentioned insurance, We all know Burt is too thick to buy insurance.

        • 2020 Won says:

          Insurance probably wont cover negligence caused by an unlicensed, unsupervised ‘deck hand’ (sic) driving in an irresponsible manner.

  3. 2020 Won says:

    Can’t drive on land without hitting a wall, can’t drive on the water without hitting a reef. That’s some kinda spashull.

    And these are the clowns we entrust to guide massive cruise ships into port.

    • Lucky shot says:

      The guys that drive the pilot boats don’t drive the cruise ships.

      • Wahoo says:

        While onboard they are essentially the ship’s master and they are expected to have local knowledge that a ship’s captain may not have. Anyone can have a bad day but for a pilot to hit reefs in that area and at that speed tells us something is wrong. I hope the investigation is thorough. Marine and Ports have these incidents far to often. There is a good reason why the public are no longer able to visit the M&P division on East Broadway to pay registration fees….

  4. Bs says:

    Seems like a very expensive training exercise for the taxpayer. Surely there is cheaper ways to train . Ploughing a multimillion dollar boat into a boiler at 25 kts is not cheap . To think that this was a training exercise one would presume someone was overseeing the rookie . From the pictures widely circulated on social media I reckon upwards of a million dollars worth of damage ! Must be better ways to train . I don’t expect anyone’s heads to role though it is the Government after all !

  5. Dunn juice says:

    Hold my beer !!

  6. comfortably numb says:

    Repairs estimated to be close to $1,000,000: willing to bet no one will be fired and we, the taxpayers, will be on the hook for the million.

    • Baseline says:

      If “they” fire him we will shut the island down.

    • Tom says:

      There goes our unemployment checks no wonder they are late!!

  7. North Shore says:

    Training, really!!! Training what not to do more like! Please explain why the boat was that far inside of NE Beacon and doing 24 knots. SMDH!!!!

  8. James says:

    ‘PILOT’ this is the description of his job. Nothing else.
    A maritime pilot, marine pilot, harbour pilot, port pilot, ship pilot, or simply pilot, is a mariner who maneuvers ships through dangerous or congested waters, such as harbors or river mouths.

  9. Mind boggling says:

    The GPS track clearly shows that they completely cut the corner to the inside of the channel marker and into shallow water. Clearly needs to be investigated. All others on that training course should also need to be held accountable and take responsibility as Im sure they new the pilot was outside the channel and encountering shallow water. Total incompetence by Marine and Ports personnel. Heads need to roll, but sadly Brother Chris Furburt will brush this under the reef as they are protected by the BIU.

  10. Question says:

    Isn’t someone supposed to be supervising the trainee, to ensure this type of thing never happens?
    Is this going to be investigated properly?

  11. Tom says:

    ‘I KNOW ‘ LOL !,

  12. sandgrownan says:

    Well that’s a given. It’s a hallmark of Bermuda public services, zero, no, less than nought, square root of f*** all accountability.

    You can almost see a strike looming if the person in charge is even remotely reprimanded.

  13. These guys do an amazing job day in and day out in all sort of Sea/weather conditions that normal people wouldn’t think of venturing out in, to see that Bermuda is always supplied with the necessities it needs every single day. They search and rescue, they’re the first ones to be called out of their beds in middle of night to help others. Give them a break they are only human and can make mistakes.
    People are so quick to be judgmental of others that do a job that they themselves wouldn’t have the balls to do.

    Glad all on board are safe.

    • Time Shall Tell says:

      Many don’t know the role these guys play. Even less would want to have to deal with what these guys have to but armchair experts on everything will complain no matter what. It’s what they do.

    • Haha says:

      That what happen when you think your the best pilot and know everything….. guess he don’t. Ha ha my cowoker

  14. puzzled says:

    From where I sit the hull cannot be damaged and holed.
    Years ago I worked with some great Class ‘C’ pilots at the Pilot Station Ordinance Island; seasoned and knew their passages and bearings .

    Northeast area is deep water but once you get west of it there is no channel per sey to North Rock.
    20+ knots?
    Must have thought he was in a boston whaler…………………………

  15. Triangle Drifter says:

    So, this is the standard of people operating very expensive taxpayer owned equipment. Buses, ferries & now the newest most expensive pilot boat crashing into things.

    Any consequences for the skipper? Highly unlikely.

    What happens to the boat? Written off most likely. It is only taxpayer money. A little less than a weeks worth of debt finance money will buy a new boat.

    The remains of the wreck will go to some enterprising individual who will convert it into something useful at a fraction of the cost that Government would pay to have it shipped away to be repaired.

  16. Pisces gal says:

    Person driving this pilot boat was NOT the pilot and was NOT qualified. Only a deck hand

    • Tom says:

      D—k hand ?

    • May Day says:

      Then there you go. If the boat was insured the insurance company just got their out clause. A “deck hand” should not be left in charge of a vessel when “training to hit breakers”.

  17. May Day says:

    Then there you go. If the boat was insured the insurance company just got their out clause. A “deck hand” should not be left in charge of a vessel when “training to hit breakers”.

  18. Triangle Drifter says:

    Deckhand running the boat? Oh that cannot be. It is one thing for a private boater to turn the helm over to an inexperienced person to have a little helm time but for a commercial or Government owned vessel to be under control by an unqualified person, even worse in a high risk area, is grossly irresponsible by the skipper in command.

    The skipper should be suspended immediately with a loss of license. If an investigation reveals a frequent use of deckhands at the helm supervisors have much to answer to.

    Will it happen? Not a chance. Not in Bermuda.

  19. Bs says:

    Seems like a very expensive training exercise for the taxpayer. Surely there is cheaper ways to train . Ploughing a multimillion dollar boat into a boiler at 25 kts is not cheap . To think that this was a training exercise one would presume someone was overseeing the rookie . The article makes it sound like it they bumped into the reef . From the pictures widely circulated on social media I reckon upwards of a million dollars worth of damage ! Must be better ways to train . I don’t expect anyone’s heads to role though it is the Government after all !

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