Police and America's Cup director launch inquiries into Andrew Simpson's death

 

Los Angeles

Two inquiries have been set up into the death on Thursday of Olympic sailing gold medallist Andrew Simpson while training with the Swedish America's Cup challenger Artemis on San Francisco Bay.

The first will be led by the San Francisco police, who investigated an April 2012 accident in a race off California and Mexico, when four crew of a 37-foot Aegean yacht died.

A second investigation will be led by the America's Cup director of racing, the Australian Iain Murray, a former America's Cup yacht designer and skipper.

The Artemis team boss, Torbjorn Torqvist, said: "Our thoughts are with Andrew's family, who suffered a tragic loss. Right now the primary focus is on the well-being of our team members and their families and the America's Cup competition will remain second to that."

Artemis said they will hold their own review to look at how risks can be limited in the future.

There has been considerable scepticism about the new boats, the design of which is chosen by the team defending the Cup, this year the Oracle Racing Team USA, run by the New Zealander Sir Russell Coutts and bankrolled by one of America's richest man Larry Ellison. The design is then imposed on the three challengers. Many believe that the 72-foot catamarans with 130-foot solid wing sails are too dangerous. They are monstrously powerful, very tricky to handle, and take huge physical agility.

The wreckage of the Artemis is at the coastguard station, where police will seek to reconstruct the accident using the yacht and interviews with witnesses. A police spokesman said: "It will be at least a week or more before they figure out what happened."

Last year's fatal accident led to a ban on all off-shore racing in California until the coastguard investigation was complete. That ban has now been lifted. As yet the staging of the 34th America's Cup, due to take place off San Francisco in September, has not been threatened. The port authority and the coastguard may be involved, but first the police need to eliminate a criminal cause or culpability.

It is reported that a second challenger, the Prada-backed Italian team Luna Rossa, where Olympic medallist Chris Draper is helmsman, has been told by its boss Patrizio Bertelli that the crew can ask to withdraw and he will respect their decision.

Simpson won a gold medal alongside Iain Percy in Beijing in 2008 and the pair won silver in London last year. Percy, accompanied Simpson's wife Leah home on the flight from San Francisco last night.

Sport
sportSo, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Arts and Entertainment
Dennis speaks to his French teacher
tvThe Boy in the Dress, TV review
News
One father who couldn't get One Direction tickets for his daughters phoned in a fake bomb threat and served eight months in a federal prison
people... (and one very unlucky giraffe)
Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll as Agnes Brown in the 2014 Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas special
tvCould Mrs Brown's Boys have taken lead for second year?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The Plaza Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia was one of the 300 US cinemas screening
filmTim Walker settles down to watch the controversial gross-out satire
Sport
Alexis Sanchez missed a penalty before scoring the opening goal with a header at the back post
footballArsenal vs QPR match report
News
Members and supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community walk with a rainbow flag during a rally in July
news
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz in Tim Burton's Big Eyes
film reviewThis is Tim Burton’s most intimate and subtle film for a decade
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
Arts and Entertainment
Madonna is not in Twitter's good books after describing her album leak as 'artistic rape and terrorism'
music14 more 'Rebel Heart' tracks leaked including Pharrell Williams collaboration
News
i100
Sport
Rooney celebrates with striker-partner Radamel Falcao after the pair combine to put United ahead
footballManchester United vs Newcastle match report
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all