FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
US Sailing Communications Manager
Petty Officer Mike Lutz
Public Affairs Officer, US Coast Guard
PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (May 1, 2012) – The US Coast Guard has requested that US Sailing, the National Governing Body for the sport, conduct an independent review of the sailing accident that occurred during the 2012 Crewed Farallones Race from San Francisco, Calif. that resulted in the deaths of five sailors.
US Sailing has appointed an Independent Review Panel for the 2012 Farallones Race, who are responsible for researching the factors involved in the accident, determining what lessons can be learned and making recommendations for future consideration.
“All of us at US Sailing are shocked and saddened by the recent tragedies that occurred during the Farallones and Newport to Ensenada Races,” said Gary Jobson, President of US Sailing. “These accidents represent an extraordinary set of events in the sport of sailing, which historically has a very strong track record of safety. Like everyone, we are very concerned about the safety of sailors. At the request of the US Coast Guard in San Francisco, we have assembled a panel of offshore sailing, safety and medical experts to lead a review that will help identify what occurred during the Farallones Race and more importantly how to insure we avoid these tragedies in the future. US Sailing is involved not only to lend our expertise in safety and offshore racing but to insure that the perspective of offshore racers is being brought to the table. We have identified a similar review panel for the Ensenada accident and are working with the US Coast Guard in San Diego to outline that review.”
The panel understands the urgency of this review and anticipates completing initial findings and recommendations to be released to the public in June.
For relevant inquiries regarding the Farallones review or to provide pertinent information and helpful commentary on the incident or race, please contact US Sailing at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The members of the Independent Review Panel focused on the Farallones incident are Sally Honey (Chairwoman, Palo Alto, CA), John Craig (San Rafael, CA), Jim Corenman (Friday Harbor, WA) and Bartz Schneider (Crystal Bay, NV). Offshore Special Regulations Consultant on the panel is Evans Starzinger (Milford, CT). The Safety at Sea Committee Chair and Review Panel Liaison is Chuck Hawley (Santa Cruz, CA). Medical Advisors are Dr. Michael Jacobs and Dr. Kent Benedict. Jim Wildey (Annapolis, MD) will advise on investigation procedures and formats.
The panelist’s complete bios will be available on ussailing.org in the coming days.
Editors Note: Media teleconference scheduled for Tuesday, May 1, 2012 at 4pm EST, 1pm PST. Call number is 605.781.1000. Please email email@example.com for a participant access code for the call.
The United States Sailing Association (US Sailing), the national governing body for sailing, provides leadership, integrity, and growth for the sport in the United States. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, US Sailing is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. US Sailing offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider. For more information, please visit www.ussailing.org.