Stuff.co.nz by Michael Forbes and Tom Hunt
A boatie who bought a $500 yacht with no engine, radio, navigation equipment or life jackets had to be stopped from sailing it from Wellington to Westport.
Maritime New Zealand said the Wellington yachtie bought the 8-metre yacht online after it had been sitting unused in Evans Bay for five years. The vessel almost ran aground during a trial voyage to the entrance of Evans Bay on Sunday because it was so slow to respond when an attempt was made to tack.
The 3-kilometre journey reportedly took five hours because of the amount of marine growth on the hull.
Concerns were raised by other boaties, and a Maritime New Zealand Maritime Officer inspected the yacht that night. He found the vessel lacked an operational locator beacon, had no working radio or engine, no charts, no navigation equipment or navigation lights.
There was no lifejacket on board and the distress flares had expired more than a decade ago. The only means of communication the new owner had was a cellphone – but with no way of charging it.
The boatie was “threatening” to sail the vessel to Westport in its current state but Maritime NZ restricted it to operating within Wellington Harbour until it was declared seaworthy and had appropriate safety equipment and charts.
Read the yachtie'sresponse and the rest of the story here.