The Triton

News

License suspended after Flugtag incident

Posted on by in
ADVERTISEMENT

An administrative law judge has suspended the Merchant Mariner Credentials of a captain who hit other vessels in a traffic jam two years ago during the Red Bull Flugtag event in Oregon.

Capt. Lowell Gillespie Jr. was in command of the Portland Spirit, a dinner cruise boat. He was cited for failing to take appropriate action to avoid a collision as outlined in Rule 8 of the Inland Rules of Navigation. Soon after the incident, the U.S. Coast Guard issued Capt. Gillespie a letter of warning for a violation of Rule 8 but he declined it, according to news reports. The Coast Guard subsequently filed a complaint against his Merchant Mariner Credential.

The Red Bull event, in which competitors attempt to fly home-made, human-powered flying machines, attracted hundreds of recreational vessels on the Willamette River, blocking the Portland Spirit’s navigational route. The Coast Guard attempted to escort the vessel through the area but was unable to control the movement of other vessels, paddle crafts and other floating devices.

Red Bull, the event organizer, was issued and accepted a letter of warning by the Coast Guard for misrepresenting the scale of the event and failing to keep the waterways clear.

The Honorable George Jordan, U.S. Coast Guard Administrative Law Judge for the hearing, stated in his decision that Gillespie “should have recognized the likelihood of a large number of vessels impeding his normal route,” and that “a higher sanction than the minimum one month penalty” was warranted. Accordingly, the judge ordered Gillespie’s credentials to be surrendered to the Coast Guard immediately for one month. Gillespie faces an additional month of suspension if he fails to successfully complete a 12-month probationary period.

Gillespie has 60 days to appeal the ruling to the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.

Related Articles

Bank sells seized M/Y Natita

Bank sells seized M/Y Natita

M/Y Natita, the 217-foot (66m) Oceanco seized by U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs for unpaid debt, has been sold, according to the Wall Street Journal. The buyer, who is unidentified but reportedly …

Front Street yard’s new building open

Construction was complete in January on the latest expansion at Front Street Shipyard in Belfast, Maine. Work began on Building 6, a 22,500-square-foot facility, in May. The heated building is …

Captain sentenced to three years in guest death

Update Dec. 4 Captain sentenced in guest death in propeller accident A yacht captain was sentenced to nearly three years in prison in the death of a 25-year-old passenger during a charter in …

Motoryacht Tatoosh saves passengers from unnamed sinking boat

By Dorie Cox Capt. Scott Redlhammer heard a radio call from a sinking boat near Bimini in the Bahamas on Feb. 18. Fortunately, so did the crew on the 303-foot (92m) M/Y Tatoosh. By the time …

CMB launches project Liquid Sky

CMB launches project Liquid Sky

The third composite hull from CMB Yachts, dubbed the CMB 104, was launched Aug. 24 at the company's shipyard in Antalya, Turkey. Christened Liquid Sky, the 154-foot (47m) motoryacht will attend …

Bluewater promotes COO

Antibes-based Bluewater has promoted Sarah Corn to the newly created position of chief operations officer (COO), giving her full responsibility of all training and crew department operations, …

Comments