Monday, September 23, 2013

Mario Vittone speaks at MOHAI in Seattle about the Sinking of HMS Bounty

"The Illusion of Experience"

6PM, September 24th 2013
MOHAI (Museum of History and Industry) 860 Terry Ave N Seattle WA

On the morning of Oct. 25, 2012, the captain and crew of the sailing vessel HMS Bounty knew that their ship’s frames were rotted, the radios were untested and the de-watering equipment was failing.
Eight hours later they sailed her — intentionally — into the path of a Category 3 hurricane.

Two days later the ship was flooding. Two days after that the captain and one of the deckhands were dead and Bounty lay at the bottom of the Atlantic.

Why did they leave? How could anyone make that decision? And why didn’t they call for help when they needed it? Join maritime safety expert Mario Vittone for a talk tomorrow, Sept. 24, as he walks through the last four days of a ship where the lack of failure was mistaken for success, where getting better was mistaken for good enough, and where one man’s experience fooled an entire crew into the worst decision of their lives.

Vittone will present his findings from the recent USCG hearings on HMS Bounty at 6 p.m. at the Museum of History & Industry, located on south Lake Union in Seattle, next door to The Center for Wooden Boats. A U.S. Navy and Coast Guard veteran, Vittone has written extensively about the Bounty sinking for the website gCaptain.

The Schooner Zodiac is hosting the talk. Admission is free, but donations for The Center for Wooden Boats will be accepted at the event.

If you’re planning to go, RSVP at info@schoonerzodiac or call 206.719.7622 so organizers know how many seats to put out.

 Mario Vittone

Mario Vittone has been heading offshore since 1985. His first experience with at-sea emergencies came that first year as ship’s company aboard the USS Coral Sea, a WWII era aircraft carrier. Joining the Coast Guard in 1991 he worked at Training Center Cape May before transferring to the Cutter Point Franklin as a helmsman and small boat coxswain. He graduated from Helicopter Rescue Swimmer School in 1994 and began his career as a rescue swimmer with two tours at Air Station Elizabeth City, one at Air Station New Orleans, then finally as an instructor and course developer at the Aviation Technical Training Center in Elizabeth City, NC. He recently retired from the U.S. Coast Guard following  four years as a vessel inspector and accident investigator in Norfolk, Virginia.

Mario is a leading expert on immersion hypothermia, drowning, sea survival, and safety at sea. His writing has appeared in Yachting Magazine, SaltWater Sportsman, MotorBoating Magazine, Lifelines, On-Scene, and Reader’s Digest. He has developed courses for municipal rescue teams and the military on search and rescue tactics and open ocean survival. In 2007, he was named as the Coast Guard Active Duty Enlisted Person of the Year and was named as the 2009 recipient of the Alex Haley Award for Journalism.

He now directs the maritime safety division of VLinc Corporation where he overseas the development of maritime safety and security training products, helping mariners come home safely from their work at sea.

Mario lives with his wife and children in Coastal Virginia, and when he’s not writing about the water he can be found on his 32 foot St. Tropez, making sure she stays above it.

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