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SV Sophia

Vessel Aground - Nov 11, 2005

On November 23, 2005, at approximately 14:56z, the net received a call from the SV Cielo. Cielo reported that SV Sophia was aground on a reef at 09º-05.2' N x 081º-32.4' W. Cielo reported that Sophia had 2 POB and was a 47 foot vessel. Cielo was approximately 600 yards away from Sophia and communicating by VHF. Cielo reported very poor weather conditions with 40 knots winds and higher gusts. Sophia was requesting assistance from the Coast Guard.

Clyde KG4BVR contacted the US Coast Guard (USCG) in Miami, FL and relayed the information. USCG-Miami in turn contacted the Panamanian authorities. In the meantime, efforts were made locally by Sophia and Cielo to contact a commercial vessel for assistance.

At 16:22z, Leslie K7LEL, aboard SV Carina in Costa Rica, advises that she is in contact with Cielo and Sophia on 8107 MHz. Contact had been made with a commercial vessel for assistance but it was 4 hours away at best speed.

At 16:30z, Clyde KG4BVR reports that Panama will be sending an aircraft to assess the situation but not time is given. This information is relayed to the vessel on 8107 MHz by Leslie K7LEL.

SV Cielo reports that he will be standing-by near Sophia in the event that the crew has to abandon ship. Cielo reports that Sophia had a 6 person life raft and a VHF hand held. He reports that the EPIRB will be activated, if necessary, as Sophia's crew abandons ship. Cielo also reports that the winds are a steady 40 knots, with higher gusts, and the sea conditions are very dangerous.

There was no further information, due to poor radio conditions, until an email from SV Carina on November 24, 2005, saying that the crew was safe and on land. They reported that the vessel was still aground on the reef, with anchors out. The did indicate that local assistance was being recruited to get Sophia afloat.

On November 25, 2005, Leslie on SV Carina advised that Sophia had been pulled of the reef by local boats around midday on November 24, 2005. Sophia was now being assessed in a local marina. Leslie reports that Sophia went into port under her own power so it is looking better than it could have been.