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Aston flight boat jammed


nicknorman
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Would you care to explain which bit, and why?

I said that I feel sad for this gentleman finding himself in this situation, he is in his mid eighties according to his friend and probably this is his last outing on his boat.

All you can respond with is that it might be "frustrating" or "annoying" but not sad!

 

I would feel somewhat sad for anyone finding themselves in a situation like this.

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Its a matter of semantics of course, but sad is an emotion usually reserved for an unrecoverable loss such as when someone you know dies, or you lose a prized possession. If you are temporarily deprived of the use of a possession, I would class that as frustrating, annoying etc. For example, if you left your favourite cardigan at your friend Mabel's house, that would be annoying but not sad. You will get it back next time you visit her ( note that failing to have a friend called Mabel is not a valid counter argument).

 

So in the case of this boat, and with the presumption that it is not damaged, merely temporarily unavailable, he will get the use of it back in the next few days. It seems unlikely that he was in a good state to use it this week, but in a few days will be too old to use it. Therefore I still don't see what is sad about the situation, unless you are just sad because he is old, but that would seem very patronising to me.

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I suspect this incident has occurred because of two things, the gunnel's of the boat are probably fairly square and the coping stones/brickwork of the lock overhang by a little amount. Given these two features, on filling the lock the boats gunnel's get caught under the protruding stonework, the boat rotates and then wedges up. more water enters the chamber and the boat gets very well wedged. I have seen gunnel's catching a good few times over the years, it has happend to us on more than one occasion. I suspect if you don't react fast enough it would be possible to get the boat absolutely stuck as this one appears to be, maybe the lip of the base plate has caught on the other side. With it only being a small boat it would not have sufficient buoyancy to lift the offending stone, and so freeing itself. It really doesn't take much of an overlap for this to happen, and it happens very quickly, frightening so :(

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It's my friend Pete's new boat en route to Gas Street Basin from Streethay Wharf. Hull was built in 1900 but much altered. It's now 40' long with a cruiser deck and newish cabin. I believe it's also been overplated. Not sure what he's going to do now. He's in his mid eighties so doesn't cruise far anymore. If he can get it to the Birmingham pound, I doubt it will ever leave.

Would you kindly pass on my best wishes to your friend and I hope that this awful situation gets sorted quickly for him.

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I too am saddened by the situation this gentleman finds himself in.

 

It must have been quite frighteneing when it occured and to be stuck there in a boat that has a good old list on, in a place which most boaters would choose not to moor up in (albeit inside a security cage) is going to feel at somewhat strange at best, Shock can be quite debilitating and, as people get older, they are less able to cope with unusual situations and it can affect them very badly.

 

I expect if I ever live long enough to become an octogenarian I would feel very fortunate to still be able to go boating. I also suspect that leaving my cardigan at Auntie Mabels would be the sort of daily occurance that one has to get used to and it is no longer something to even get annoyed about (I am forgetfull enough now!)

 

I feel it is a a perfectly natural thing for anyone to show some compassion towards the gent on the boat. To feel sad for him is just a way of expressing that compassion. Yes he will get his boat back in a few days - but maybe his confidence has had one knock too many to continue boating. A little like the old dear who has a minor bump in her car in a supermarket car park but decided to give up driving afterwards.

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I suspect this incident has occurred because of two things, the gunnel's of the boat are probably fairly square and the coping stones/brickwork of the lock overhang by a little amount. Given these two features, on filling the lock the boats gunnel's get caught under the protruding stonework, the boat rotates and then wedges up. more water enters the chamber and the boat gets very well wedged. I have seen gunnel's catching a good few times over the years, it has happend to us on more than one occasion. I suspect if you don't react fast enough it would be possible to get the boat absolutely stuck as this one appears to be, maybe the lip of the base plate has caught on the other side. With it only being a small boat it would not have sufficient buoyancy to lift the offending stone, and so freeing itself. It really doesn't take much of an overlap for this to happen, and it happens very quickly, frightening so sad.png

This happened to me in one of the Ashstead locks. I got caught by overhanging coping stones while ascending. Fortunately the boat dropped free when I lowered the water level. It had taken on an alarming list though and the contents of my cupboards were dumped onto the floor. You can't afford to take your eye off the boat for a second while locking, I was answering a phone call!!

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It might be worth setting water under boat and using some ratchet straps to pull it right. Even of you welded a temp eyes on the roof rail to take the hook from ratchet straps. There are bollards that may take the strain.

Edited by mark99
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Would you kindly pass on my best wishes to your friend and I hope that this awful situation gets sorted quickly for him.

I will, thanks.

Hi,

According to a post on the link that Speedwheel posted earlier the person on the boat isn't the owner.

Fred.

That's true. Pete decided not to go on the trip (not sure why). His (slightly younger) friend was bringing it back for him. He is, of course, very aware of what's going on.

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Chesh and deckhand - my concern is that you are expressing sadness because the owner is old. We do seem to have a habit of treating old people as if they were children, but I think that is ageist and demeaning for said people. I say this having a mother who has just turned 90 but remains fiercely independent, still drives, goes swimming and to "keep fit" classes, and is always out partying when I try to get her on the phone. So my point is that being old is not a cause for sadness.

 

I will only feel sadness for this chap if his boat is significantly damaged, but it seems as though it isn't. There are plenty of things to be sad about in this world, getting your boat stuck in a lock isn't one of them IMO.

Edited by nicknorman
  • Greenie 1
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Chesh and deckhand - my concern is that you are expressing sadness because the owner is old. We do seem to have a habit of treating old people as if they were children, but I think that is ageist and demeaning for said people. I say this having a mother who has just turned 90 but remains fiercely independent, still drives, goes swimming and to "keep fit" classes, and is always out partying when I try to get her on the phone. So my point is that being old is not a cause for sadness.

 

I will only feel sadness for this chap if his boat is significantly damaged, but it seems as though it isn't. There are plenty of things to be sad about in this world, getting your boat stuck in a lock isn't one of them IMO.

 

So if it was your mother who was on board when this happened you would not feel any compassion towards her? It doesn't actually matter how old the person on the boat is it is still a horrible thing to have happened but no matter how fiercely independant elderly people are they still do not recover from a shock as quickly as a younger person. There is no way I would treat any elderly person like a child. We have a lot we can learn from our elders if we are prepared to take the time to listen to them. They deserve respect and when they come unstuck in their quest for independence it makes me sad.

 

My Dad was still driving and leading a full, active and independent life right up until the end and he was an octogenarian. He used to spend one morning a week "taking the old folks shopping" as he had some friends in their 90's that he took to the supermaket.

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Update: The boat jammed due to the gunwale getting trapped under the copings at the top of the lock. The other side continued to rise and the boat jammed. The guy who was single-handing the boat told me it happened very quickly, so there's a useful warning in all of this. Always watch your boat like a hawk when in locks. I know it's been said before but look what can happen!

 

Pete is ok. He just wants his boat here and he's worried about CaRT charging him for the work.

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Chesh and deckhand - my concern is that you are expressing sadness because the owner is old. We do seem to have a habit of treating old people as if they were children, but I think that is ageist and demeaning for said people.

I too have a Grandmother who is 98 and still more than capable of doing things for herself so please do not make the assumption that I am "treating" anyone like a child.

I am more than capable of treating people with respect and the dignity that they deserve, of any age.

As for your "concern" for me expressing sadness because the Gentleman is old - I did not say he was old, you did. I said, with respect, that he is in his eighties. I expressed sadness because he found himself in this situation. It now transpires that he was not even on the boat, so I still express sadness for the person that was (and I don't know his age) and still even more so that this Gentlemans boat is in this situation.

It is so strange that a comment of compassion could turn into such a discussion like you have created.

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Update: The boat jammed due to the gunwale getting trapped under the copings at the top of the lock. The other side continued to rise and the boat jammed. The guy who was single-handing the boat told me it happened very quickly, so there's a useful warning in all of this. Always watch your boat like a hawk when in locks. I know it's been said before but look what can happen!

I wonder whether the boat was tied, maybe to a centre line from the roof, which tightened and tipped the boat as it rose in the lock?

 

It seems a logical cause for an otherwise unlikely event.

 

Tim

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?..It is so strange that a comment of compassion could turn into such a discussion like you have created.

Looking back, you said it was sad, I said I thought it was not really sad but nonetheless annoying etc. you said my comment was "strange" ie you felt my emotion was incorrect, thus triggering the debate about the nature of sadness and whether it was applicable in this case.

 

As I said, its a point of semantics and degree, but I do tend to rile against mawkishness and what I call "the Princess Diana syndrome". If you use up your "sadness" emotion on such relative trivia, what is left for really sad events?

 

There is nothing wrong with compassion of course, but compassion and sadness are in no way synonyms. I have at least learned something from my partner Jeff who is a Macmillan nurse and who would consider compassion and sadness a million miles apart.

 

Anyway, shall we agree to be allowed the emotions we each find appropriate?

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I wonder whether the boat was tied, maybe to a centre line from the roof, which tightened and tipped the boat as it rose in the lock?It seems a logical cause for an otherwise unlikely event.Tim

Yes, could be. Tieing the boat up in locks tends to be considered a bad idea when going downhill, but going uphill one thinks less about it but of course the tie point may well end up way above the bollards. Those new wooden bollards with a rounded lower part and square upper part (which I have a feeling these might be) would be particularly good at not releasing to a strong upward force.

 

Perhaps the type of construction can be an issue. Early SMH boats had welded gunnels, later ones have the hull sides bent at right angles to form the gunnels thus presenting a slightly rounded edge, perhaps reducing the likelihood of a hangup when going up?

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I wonder whether the boat was tied, maybe to a centre line from the roof, which tightened and tipped the boat as it rose in the lock?

 

It seems a logical cause for an otherwise unlikely event.

 

Tim

 

Having had experience of a boat jamming in this way, it doesn't seem that unlikely to me! See http://groups.google.com/d/msg/uk.rec.waterways/iSdeI6K8Hx0/TpSfDgido4UJ - story relates to 1971!

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Having had experience of a boat jamming in this way, it doesn't seem that unlikely to me! See http://groups.google.com/d/msg/uk.rec.waterways/iSdeI6K8Hx0/TpSfDgido4UJ - story relates to 1971!

Ah, the Simolda 'ice cream' boats!

They had guards/rubbing strakes made of flat bar instead of convex, so would be more likely to snag on projections in the lock.

Still surprising to me, though.

 

Tim

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Surely if the boat can sit at that angle, it's not that it's too wide for the lock, but that it has caught on something one side and then rotated thus jamming it.

That was my thoughts. i wonder if its now hanging in midair 3 foot above the water. How much will the steel contract if we get a frost next week?

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Anyway, shall we agree to be allowed the emotions we each find appropriate?

I would like that very much thankyou. Back to my first comment then, I feel sad that this gentleman finds himself in this situation. I do hope that things get put right quickly for him.

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I wonder whether the boat was tied, maybe to a centre line from the roof, which tightened and tipped the boat as it rose in the lock?

 

It seems a logical cause for an otherwise unlikely event.

 

Tim

Seems unlikely.

 

The usual row of three bollards is on the side of the lock where the boat is high.

 

Whilst there also seems to be single bollard near the top gate on the side that would have needed to be held down, it is nowhere near where a centre rope could have been attached to to cause what you describe to happen.

 

1381854_428992520544745_166749446_n.jpg

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How did it happen"quickly", I would have thought it happened quite slowly

It depends how you define quickly, How do boats sink when they get cilled, how do top gates get lifted. The boaters if they are on the ball have all the time in the world to stop it happening, but it still happens.

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When things go wrong in a lock they do indeed go wrong very quickly.

Went up these locks just a couple of weeks ago, and helped a pair down last week, and we remarked on those bollards.

The new ones are square so a rope will not run round them so useless for slowing a butty but even worse surely they are on the wrong side of the lock???? If we assume that someone had roped up the boat when ascending (which I agree is not a good idea) then with the lock approaching full they would be on the towpath side getting ready to open the gate so would need to cross the gate urgently if the rope became tight, even if they spotted it.

 

.............Dave


It depends how you define quickly, How do boats sink when they get cilled, how do top gates get lifted. The boaters if they are on the ball have all the time in the world to stop it happening, but it still happens.

 

Have you ever actually been at a lock when something goes wrong??????

 

.............Dave

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