Andrea Gail

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Career
Name:Andrea Gail (final name)
Miss Penny (original name)
Owner:Sea Gale Corp., Gloucester, Massachusetts
Port of registry:United States
Builder:Eastern Marine Inc., Panama City, Florida
Completed:1978
Out of service:October 28, 1991
Homeport:Gloucester, Massachusetts
Fate:Sank while steaming through the 1991 Perfect Storm
Status:Lost at sea
General characteristics
Type:Fishing vessel
Tonnage:92 tons
Length:72 feet (22 m)
Beam:20 feet (6.1 m)
Depth:9.8 feet (3.0 m)
Installed power:1-365 hp turbo diesel reduction engine(main) and 1 generator
Propulsion:1 single shaft propeller
Speed:15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Notes:Sister ships: Lady Grace and Hannah Boden
 
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Career
Name:Andrea Gail (final name)
Miss Penny (original name)
Owner:Sea Gale Corp., Gloucester, Massachusetts
Port of registry:United States
Builder:Eastern Marine Inc., Panama City, Florida
Completed:1978
Out of service:October 28, 1991
Homeport:Gloucester, Massachusetts
Fate:Sank while steaming through the 1991 Perfect Storm
Status:Lost at sea
General characteristics
Type:Fishing vessel
Tonnage:92 tons
Length:72 feet (22 m)
Beam:20 feet (6.1 m)
Depth:9.8 feet (3.0 m)
Installed power:1-365 hp turbo diesel reduction engine(main) and 1 generator
Propulsion:1 single shaft propeller
Speed:15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Notes:Sister ships: Lady Grace and Hannah Boden

The F/V Andrea Gail was a commercial fishing vessel that was lost at sea with all hands during the "Perfect Storm" of 1991. The vessel and her six-man crew had been fishing the North Atlantic Ocean out of Gloucester, Massachusetts. Her last reported position was 180 mi (290 km) northeast of Sable Island on October 28, 1991. The story of Andrea Gail and her crew was the basis of the 1997 book The Perfect Storm by Sebastian Junger, and a 2000 film.

F/V Andrea Gail[edit]

Andrea Gail was a 72-foot (22 m) commercial fishing vessel constructed in Panama City, Florida in 1978, and owned by Robert Brown.[1] Her home port was Marblehead, Massachusetts. She also sailed from Gloucester, Massachusetts, where she would offload her catch and reload food, fuel, and stores for her next run. She was originally named Miss Penny.

Lost at sea[edit]

Final voyage[edit]

Andrea Gail began her final voyage departing from Gloucester Harbor, Massachusetts, on September 20, 1991, bound for the Grand Banks of Newfoundland off the coast of eastern Canada. After poor fishing, Captain Frank W. "Billy" Tyne Jr. headed east to the Flemish Cap where he believed they would have better luck. Despite weather reports warning of dangerous conditions, the captain set course for home on October 26–27, 1991.[1] It is known that the ship's ice machine was malfunctioning and unable to maintain the catch for much longer.[2] This is suggested as a key factor in the decision to head home on October 26.

Disappearance[edit]

The last reported transmission from Andrea Gail was at about 6:00 p.m. on October 28, 1991. Captain Tyne radioed Linda Greenlaw, Captain of Andrea Gail's sister ship Hannah Boden, and gave his coordinates as 44°00′N 56°40′W / 44.000°N 56.667°W / 44.000; -56.667,[1] or about 162 mi (261 km) east of Sable Island. He also gave a weather report indicating 30-foot (9.1 m) seas and wind gusts up to 80 knots (150 km/h (93 mph)). Tyne's final recorded words were "She's comin' on, boys, and she's comin' on strong." Junger reported that the storm created waves in excess of 100 ft (30 m) in height, but ocean buoy monitors recorded a peak wave height of 39-foot (12 m), and so waves of 100 ft (30 m) were deemed "unlikely" by Science Daily.[3] However, data from a series of weather buoys in the general vicinity of the vessel's last known location recorded peak wave action exceeding 60 ft (18 m) in height from October 28 through 30, 1991.[1]

No further messages were heard from the vessel and no other ships were able to reach her.

Search[edit]

On October 30, 1991, the vessel was reported overdue. An extensive air and sea search was launched by the 106th Rescue Wing from the New York Air National Guard, United States Coast Guard and Canadian Coast Guard forces. The search would eventually cover over 186,000 square nautical miles (640,000 km2).[4]

On November 6, 1991, Andrea Gail's emergency position-indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) was discovered washed up on the shore of Sable Island. The EPIRB was designed to automatically send out a distress signal upon contact with sea water, but the Canadian Coast Guard personnel who found the beacon "did not conclusively verify whether the control switch was in the on or off position".[1] Authorities called off the search for the missing vessel on November 9, 1991, due to the low probability of crew survival.[1]

Fuel drums, a fuel tank, the EPIRB, an empty life raft, and some other flotsam were the only wreckage ever found. The ship was presumed lost at sea somewhere along the continental shelf near Sable Island.

Crew[edit]

All six of the crew were lost at sea.

In the media[edit]

The story of Andrea Gail and her crew inspired Sebastian Junger's 1997 book, The Perfect Storm, and a 2000 film, distributed by Warner Brothers. The Andrea Gail's near-sister ship, Lady Grace, was used during the filming of the movie.

A model of Andrea Gail, built by Paul Gran, is on display at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester.[5]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l U.S. Coast Guard investigation report
  2. ^ Houghton, Gillian (2002). The Wreck of the Andrea Gail: Three Days of a Perfect Storm. Rosen Publishing Group. 
  3. ^ "Meteorologists Say 'Perfect Storm' Not So Perfect". ScienceDaily. Retrieved 9 April 2012. 
  4. ^ "The search for the Andrea Gail: Gloucester Daily Times". Archived from the original on 21 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  5. ^ Morissette, Dove (September 12, 2012). "True to Form: Model Maker Crafts Museum Replica of Andrea Gail". Gloucester Times. Retrieved November 14, 2012. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]