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Sunk liveaboard Raja Ampat - Total of 3 in 2010-11


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#1 danielstassen

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Posted 01 January 2012 - 08:57 PM

Hi Folks,

I just heard from the owner of one of the liveaboards in Raja Ampat that the S/Y Mandarin Siren ( http://worldwidedive...arin-siren.html ) sunk in Raja Ampat close to Sandy Manta a couple of days ago. This is the third boat that sinks in Raja Ampat in less than 2 year. Apparently (hearsay), a fire started in the engine room. Luckily, the guests were diving when it happened. It must have been quite a shock to come up from your dive and only seeing the tip of a mast protruding out of the water. From what I heard, nobody got hurt.

My thoughts go to the divers to whom this dreadful accident happened.

Daniel

Edited by danielstassen, 01 January 2012 - 11:01 PM.

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#2 dondunlop

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 01:57 AM

I work at the head office of Worldwide Dive and Sail and I'm afraid that what Daniel has to say is basically true. While the exact details of the event are still somewhat unclear, what we do know is that a fire broke out below decks while the guests were on a morning dive. The origin of the fire is not yet fully confirmed but we believe that it was caused by an electrical fault in the tumble dryer in the laundry room and quickly spread to the engine room. Guests were not aboard at the time and therefore were never in any danger. The crew did everything they could but in the end were unable to contain the blaze and were forced to abandon the vessel which was subsequently lost. Daniel is correct that no one was hurt in the accident, and for that we are incredibly grateful -- no matter how great the loss to us it could have been very much worse.

Our other Indonesian vessel, the S/Y Indo Siren, was very near at the time of the accident and steamed immediately to pick up the guests and crew from the tender. A speedboat was immediately dispatched from Sorong to pick everyone up from the Indo Siren and return them as quickly as possible to Sorong where they were provided with fresh clothing, accommodation and assistance from our staff. The next day they were flown to Jakarta where Worldwide Dive and Sail owners and staff assisted them in obtaining emergency travel documents and they subsequently flew home to be with their families over New Year.

For all of us at Worldwide Dive and Sail this is a shock and a great loss, but as said above it could have been very much worse. We are very thankful that none of the guests or the crew were injured or worse. At this time we have refrained from making a full public announcement as we continue to gather complete information about the incident. Also we have a large number of guests booked on future trips aboard the Mandarin Siren through our network of agents, and in the interests of professionalism we are trying to notify the agents so that the guests may learn through them rather than from the general public. However an official announcement will be made as soon as we have done this and are certain of the sequence of events.

Thank you very much indeed for your concern, and also many thanks to everyone else who has sent their condolences in the past days.

Don Dunlop

#3 operam

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 09:19 AM

WOW! I was just on this boat in November. Glad to hear that everyone is OK.
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#4 John Bantin

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 09:35 AM

WOW! I was just on this boat in November. Glad to hear that everyone is OK.

What a tragedy... http://www.divernet....raja_ampat.html

Edited by John Bantin, 02 January 2012 - 09:36 AM.

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#5 stewsmith

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 05:24 AM

I guess I better look for another boat to charter for september now.

RIP Mandarin Siren

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#6 Jippie

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 08:31 AM

RIP Mandarin Siren....
We had booked the Mandarin Siren for febr 25th 2012... sad we cannot go!
WWDS is working on a alternative...

#7 tdpriest

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 11:25 AM

... the S/Y Indo Siren, was very near at the time of the accident and steamed immediately to pick up the guests and crew from the tender...


I knew there was something special about the Indo Siren!

I'm sorry to hear about her sister vessel, and sympathise with the divers and crew: I hope that 2012 is going to improve!

Tim

:)

#8 Steve Douglas

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 09:16 AM

I'd like to know if the owners took the responsibility to reimburse the guests for their trip expenses and loss of gear, cams and clothing items as they should.
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#9 Luca M Vaime

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 01:48 AM

The most important was that nobody got hurt! R.I.P MSY Mandarine. The owners are very respectable people , I am sure they have been dealing with the situation adequately.

#10 Mooseman1007

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 03:55 AM

I guess there is one plus point out of all this....a new wreck dive in RA :)

Edited by Mooseman1007, 26 January 2012 - 03:56 AM.


#11 danielstassen

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 06:05 PM

That's also what I said... I do not think there are many wreck dive in RA, if any? It will probably become a top dive site in RA.
Daniel Stassen

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#12 eileenchangs

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 03:33 AM

It'll be good wreck dive site in the future !!

#13 operam

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 06:11 PM

An article in the Feb 2012 issue of Undercurrent about the incident, including a comment from a guest who was on the boat during the incident:

Raja Ampat Liveaboard Goes Down in Flames

Edited by operam, 03 February 2012 - 06:17 PM.

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#14 Maria Munn

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Posted 03 March 2012 - 07:42 PM

Hi all,

Can I just say thank you very much for those of you who have been concerned about the crew on the Mandarin Siren, it has really meant a lot to my partner who worked on it, Michel, who had in fact worked on this boat for over 5 years when it was originally the "Mimpi" live aboard operated by Simone from Thalassa Dive Centre. He lived on this boat and had absolutely everything he owned on it. He personally loved the Mandarin, so much so, that he worked on it for a year and a half without a holiday ....

On a personal note, I was really sad that I was not informed about this accident and don't seem to have received an apology despite writing to the office with regards to our belongings. I was worried sick when I didn't hear from him over New Year as we have texted each other every day since meeting last January whilst I led a trip on the same boat when it too encountered a bad accident, entering and sailing through a storm for 4 hours from Kri Island despite asking the guide if we could turn back and stay in Yenbessar village instead of going to Batanta island. Water entered the engine room that night, quite scary indeed. It shook me up for months but I was told by the marketing person in charge that "I was taking things too seriously and that I needed to move on and forget it."

As soon as I heard about the accident, 4th January, I got in touch with the office asking if I could go and see Michel as soon as I finished work on 15th and would he be there? I was told that he was resting. I asked if I could buy him a couple of the gifts which I gave him for his birthday last year and for saving us all on the Mandarin in January to surprise him with, a little iPod shuffle and a Man United t-shirt which had his name on it. I asked if there was a way that I could sort it out directly with the company's insurance as I didn't want Michel to know.

I received a reply from one owner telling me that "they had had a whip round for the crew" for their belongings. I was quite shocked at how cold this statement was. I was then told that I needed to forward receipts (which I understood) and that the money would be repaid through Michel's bank account. I asked how Michel could then get the money to me in England for me to buy the gifts and then how was I going to get them back to him when he worked on the boat for 48 weeks of the year ... Wouldn't there be an easier way and also how I was surprised that they couldn't help me when he has worked for the company since 2009 and I have been helping them behind the scenes here promoting WWDS through my courses and talks at the dive shows and even offering to be an investor when they needed it.

I then received a stern response from the main owner telling me "Looks like Michel will be going back to work on 13th - I've been following your emails Maria, stop this bullshit and leave us alone to concentrate on more important things! The money is in Michel's bank account." I was totally shocked .... I have worked with dive operations such as Nautilus Explorer, and many others throughout 10 years of working in the dive industry and have never been spoken to like this. I was simply asking if there was a way to help replace Michel's gifts to celebrate our one year anniversary, Valentines Day and his birthday .....

I saw Michel this week for one day and despite him asking the office in Makassar about replacing his belongings he simply receives a response saying that it is nothing to do with them and he has to speak to the office in Thailand. He still only has 2 t-shirts, one of them being the one which I took out for him which he gave me when I needed it ... we are both big Manchester United fans!!!

Surely we all as divers have a responsibility to look after the staff who look after us, carrying 18 tanks 4 times a day and working from 5 am until 10 pm at night for a few dollars per day should be appreciated particularly after fighting a fire to save everyone's belongings and the boat itself which he loved dearly - and the staff still keep smiling to make sure that we all have a really lovely holiday .....

The last email I had was from another owner telling me that he was "tired of working 16 hour days sorting out this s***" - choice words indeed after this kind of catastrophe and the heartbreak that everyone who lost their personal belongings must be feeling ....

I am sorry to have to bring this to the forum, but as we are getting absolutely nowhere sending emails and calling, there is sadly no choice and really hope that this can be rectified soon so that Michel can start to rebuild his belongings and we can have a future together .... I also lost a Sea Shepherd hoodie which I was really proud of - Darren from Sea Shepherd UK gave it to be because of the work I put in to raise money for them and I lent it to one of the crew to stop Anita from getting wet in a storm as she had no jacket. Michel was going to give it back to me when he saw me ...

I simply don't understand why there has been no response from anyone .... I've also found out that he has been diving to 16 metres to the Mandarin Siren without a diving licence .... :swimmingfish: :) ;) - to say that I am shocked is an understatement .....

If lessons are to be learnt from this accident, I sincerely hope that we all as divers can appreciate the crew who look after us so well and treat them with the love and fairness that they all deserve.

Sincerely,

Maria

#15 kathymm

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 07:18 AM

While I cannot comment on events during and after the fire on the Mandarin Siren, not having been there, I can say that during my trip on the Indo Siren one of the owners was on board and it was clear that he felt that the crew was like part of his family and they felt the same. I feel confident that WWD&S are taking care of all crew and guests on board, but after a disaster like this it can take some time for everything to get back to normal.

I would feel absolutely confident in boarding any of the WWD&S boats today, tomorrow or anytime in the future…In fact I wish I was boarding one of their boats today or tomorrow instead of having to wait for a future trip.

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#16 John Bantin

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 08:47 AM

While I cannot comment on events during and after the fire on the Mandarin Siren, not having been there, I can say that during my trip on the Indo Siren one of the owners was on board and it was clear that he felt that the crew was like part of his family and they felt the same. I feel confident that WWD&S are taking care of all crew and guests on board, but after a disaster like this it can take some time for everything to get back to normal.

I would feel absolutely confident in boarding any of the WWD&S boats today, tomorrow or anytime in the future…In fact I wish I was boarding one of their boats today or tomorrow instead of having to wait for a future trip.

Kathy Mendes
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I'd go along with that! Got to wait until the autumn for another trip with WWD&S because I'm tied up elsewhere before that.

I have enjoyed a trip on Mandarin Siren as well as the original Sumpa Jumpa Lagi.

Edited by John Bantin, 05 March 2012 - 12:01 PM.

I buy my own photographic kit. Diving equipment manufacturers and diving services suppliers get even-handed treatment from me whether they choose to advertise in the publications I write for or not. All the equipment I get on loan is returned as soon as it is finished with. Did you know you can now get Diver Mag as an iPad/Android app?

 

#17 mikeuta

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 02:42 PM

I've sailed twice with WWDS on the Indo Siren and will be spending part of my honeymoon on the Maldives Siren this summer. Both of my experiences with WWDS have been simply amazing and everyone on board made my trips special. I am sure that the Mandarin Siren will be sadly missed.

All reports I have read seem to show that WWDS did a great job with the guests and staff on board for which they should be congratulated. It is a shame that not everyone thinks this but we all have our opinions!

I cannot wait for our trip around the Maldives and wish it was starting tomorrow... I'm 100% positive that WWDS will make our happy time even more special :) .

#18 dondunlop

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 08:49 PM

Dear Maria,

We are sorry that you have had a negative experience with the team at Worldwide Dive and Sail. We received several emails from you in regards to the incident on the S/Y Mandarin Siren and your concern over the safety of one of our crew members- Michel Clive, the last of which being 5th January 2012.

Our understanding, once you were assured of Michel's safety, is that you wished to visit him in Indonesia. We suggested you contact him directly as he would be better aware of his whereabouts than we. We then followed up and let you know he would be aboard the S/Y Indo Siren from 13th January. All of the crew of the S/Y Mandarin Siren were offered positions on our other yachts and assistance with further employment which, as I am sure you can imagine, was of great concern for all of our crew.

You also requested replacement for an ipod and Manchester United shirt that you had previously given to Michel as a gift. Company owner Mark Shandur informed you that all the crew had been given money not just by ourselves but the kind guests of the S/Y Indo Siren- which was in the vicinity at the time of the incident. Crew and guest belongings that could be claimed would be so under the company's insurance and Michel would receive a payout. If you had receipts you were asked to send them as that would help us greatly with the claim.

With regards to Michel's passport, Worldwide Dive and Sail provided Michel with a passport when he travelled to Thailand in 2009 prior to him joining the S/Y Mandarin Siren. That passport was lost before this incident however we would be more than happy to assist Michel in obtaining a new one should he request it. We have not received such a request from him at this time.

We fully agree with your comments regarding crew and we are proud that our crew work so hard, and always with a smile, to assist the guests and ensure everyone has a great holiday whichever yacht they are on.

In regards to your personal belongings left aboard the S/Y Mandarin Siren, as you have not previously made us aware that they were on board, there is little we can do now to claim for them.

If you would like to discuss further please feel free to pm through Wetpixel or email one of our team

Kind regards,
Siren Fleet Team

Edited by dondunlop, 05 March 2012 - 08:49 PM.


#19 RWP0515

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:44 PM

That's also what I said... I do not think there are many wreck dive in RA, if any? It will probably become a top dive site in RA.


Hi Daniel.

There is a nice plane wreck at Pulau Wai. 25 minutes from Kri. It's a U.S P47 Fighter at 28 meters. Very nice dive. Usually has a very big Broad Club Cuttlefish hanging around the wreck.

#20 danielstassen

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 02:22 AM

Hi Daniel.

There is a nice plane wreck at Pulau Wai. 25 minutes from Kri. It's a U.S P47 Fighter at 28 meters. Very nice dive. Usually has a very big Broad Club Cuttlefish hanging around the wreck.


Thanks for the info, but now I am in Alor! Too bad...
Daniel Stassen

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