Two lost as storm sinks replica tall ship HMS Bounty

 

One of the world's most picturesque paeans to sailing nostalgia was claimed by the sea as giant waves off the Carolinas sunk HMS Bounty, a replica tall ship which was built for the 1962 film Mutiny On The Bounty and, more recently, took a supporting role in Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.

The US Coast Guard rescued 14 of the 16 crew by helicopter after receiving an emergency call late on Sunday saying the owners had lost contact with the vessel. They then received a distress signal from the captain, who said Bounty was taking on water at a rate of 2ft per hour because power had been lost, putting its bilge pumps out of action.

The overnight operation began with the deployment of a Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft to search for the ship. At about 4.30am, the captain determined that Bounty was sinking and ordered all on board to abandon ship. Fourteen survivors were plucked from lifeboats before dawn amid 18ft waves. The Coast Guard was searching for the two missing crew members last night.

The ship had left Connecticut and was bound for Florida when Sandy blew up in the Caribbean and moved north. "They were staying in constant contact with the National Hurricane Centre," said Tracie Simons, of the HMS Bounty Organisation. "They were trying to make it around the storm."

The original HMS Bounty, built in 1789, was deployed by the Royal Navy on a supply mission to the South Pacific when a crewman, Fletcher Christian, led one of the most famous mutinies in nautical history against the captain, William Bligh, as the ship sailed from Tahiti for the West Indies with a cargo of breadfruit. After Bligh and those loyal to him were allowed to escape in a longboat, Christian and his followers ended up landing on Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific, where they burned the ship and settled.

The replica was built to the original plans but was a third larger to accommodate more passengers and modern navigation equipment.

There was no word last night on the condition of the 14 who survived the sinking. According to reports, the crew posted a message on the ship's website yesterday about their concern as the storm approached. "This will be a tough voyage for the Bounty," it said.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Technical Author / Multimedia Writer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This recognized leader in providing software s...

Recruitment Genius: Clinical Lead / RGN

£40000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: IT Sales Consultant

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company has a n...

Recruitment Genius: Works Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A works engineer is required in a progressive ...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent