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Houseboat company sued for using mooring lines that were too elastic

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    Houseboat company sued for using mooring lines that were too elastic

    Interesting case from the BC SUPREME COURT



    Houseboat company sued for using mooring lines that we "too elastic"

    "The starboard beaching stake had been pulled loose by tension on the starboard mooring line and both the mooring line and beaching stake had been catapulted at high speed back towards the Annalise, shattering the windshield behind which the plaintiff was standing. The mooring line struck the plaintiff on her left side causing significant injuries. It is unknown if the plaintiff was struck by the beaching stake. A lengthy section of mooring line and the beaching stake came to rest near the plaintiff inside the Annalise. The forces applied to the beaching stake had caused it to be bent in the middle at an angle which the photographs in evidence indicate was about 15 to 20 degrees."

    The plaintiff alleges the catapulting of the mooring line and beaching stake was caused by the defendant's failure to take reasonable care to equip the Annalise with the appropriate type of mooring line. The line used on the Annalise is alleged to have been too elastic. It was a nylon double braided line which expert evidence indicated could store energy which, when the beaching stake came loose propelled it and the mooring line rapidly towards the Annalise.

    The complaint of the plaintiff in essence is that the defendant ought to have used a mooring line of a type that had less elasticity. Its failure to do so was a breach of the standard of care it owed the plaintiff and the resultant accident and her injuries were reasonably foreseeable.



    LINK to the Courts conclusion:

    DETAILS:IN THE SUPREME COURT OF BRITISH COLUMBIA

    The Courts Conclusion

    [24] In my opinion the sudden release of the beaching stake and its propulsion through the windshield of the Annalise was unforeseeable. It "would not have occurred to the mind of a reasonable man in the position of the defendant".

    [25] The action must be dismissed.

    Greg
    1999 Bayliner 3988
    Twin Cummins 6BTA 270hp
    Malaspina Strait, BC

    #2
    I think the inability to take responsibility for ones own screwups is moving north.
    P/C Pete
    Edmonds Yacht Club (Commodore 1993)
    1988 3818 "GLAUBEN”
    Hino EH700 175 Onan MDKD Genset
    MMSI 367770440

    Comment


      #3
      Fragile society we live in.
      Mocoondo
      2002 Bayliner 195 Capri
      Mercruiser 5.0L V8 / Alpha I Gen II
      MMSI: 338091755

      Comment


        #4
        And this is one of the reasons it costs $300 to rent a 16' jon boat for a day...if you can find a boat for rent.

        Its simply not worth renting a motorized boat out, too much liability and risk for damage.
        Esteban
        Huntington Beach, California
        2018 Element 16
        Currently looking for 32xx in South Florida
        Former Bayliners: 3218, 2859, 2252, 1952

        Comment


          #5
          First thing you learn,m when double braid is stretched super taut, hide.
          Boatless at this time

          A veteran is someone who, at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of America," for an amount of "up to and including their life."

          Comment


            #6
            Finally a court that agrees with "ya pays your money and ya takes your chances". There has to be some basic level of responsibility that rests on the plaintiff, such as the duty to exercise "due care"when docking and tying the boat.
            1990 2755 - sold
            2005 275 - sold (now boatless)

            Comment


              #7
              as much as the ruling was the correct one, it surprises me that the beach anchor/stake wasnt named in the suit also, AND that the court came to a reasonable and just conclusion in this case.

              it was definitely foreseeable that under load, the line had the potential to act like a rubber band, as it is designed to do...

              but it wasnt the line that failed to do its job as it was intended to do (which is to absorb shock load energy), but it was the beach anchor/stake that failed at the worst possible moment, and the line only reacted to that failure.

              and on behalf of the beach anchor/stake, I will say that it was probably severely overloaded or being misused in some other manner that caused it to fail, and NOT any fault of its manufacture or design...

              its a shame more people cant admit to their foolish mistakes, learn from them and move on, without trying to place the blame on someone else. the problems they face in life are usually a product of their own ignorance and carelessness, and yet they seldom learn anything from them.


              NU LIBERTE'
              Salem, OR

              1989 Bayliner 2556 Convertible
              5.7 OMC Cobra - 15.5x11 prop
              N2K equipped throughout..
              2014 Ram 3500 crew cab, 6.7 Cummins
              2007 M-3705 SLC weekend warrior, 5th wheel
              '04 Polaris Sportsman 700 -- '05 Polaris Sportsman 500 HO
              Heavy Equipment Repair and Specialty Welding

              Comment


                #8
                "Centerline2" post=828910 wrote:


                its a shame more people cant admit to their foolish mistakes, learn from them and move on, without trying to place the blame on someone else. the problems they face in life are usually a product of their own ignorance and carelessness, and yet they seldom learn anything from them.
                Well said. But we unfortunately have to deal with the teachings of 60 years of increasingly progressive government and social/educational policies and laws.
                1990 2755 - sold
                2005 275 - sold (now boatless)

                Comment


                  #9
                  From a physics standpoint, it's a tradeoff. Ask any fisherman about monofilament vs braid line and you'll get an earful.

                  Yes the more elastic line stores more energy for a given amount of max force (breaking strength). But that stretch is also what makes it forgiving of unexpected loads. Given two identical boats drifting away from the dock at the same speed, the elastic line will experience less force bringing the boat to a halt than the stiff line. In other words, all other things being equal, the elastic line is less likely to break.

                  So elastic = whips back with more force (has more energy) when the line breaks. But not-elastic = breaks more easily so whips back more often. Pick your poison. It isn't the case of one being good and the other bad like the expert witness implied.
                  1994 2556, 350 MAG MPI Horizon, Bravo 2

                  Comment


                    #10
                    "Centerline2" post=828910 wrote:
                    as much as the ruling was the correct one, it surprises me that the beach anchor/stake wasnt named in the suit also, AND that the court came to a reasonable and just conclusion in this case.

                    it was definitely foreseeable that under load, the line had the potential to act like a rubber band, as it is designed to do...

                    but it wasnt the line that failed to do its job as it was intended to do (which is to absorb shock load energy), but it was the beach anchor/stake that failed at the worst possible moment, and the line only reacted to that failure.

                    and on behalf of the beach anchor/stake, I will say that it was probably severely overloaded or being misused in some other manner that caused it to fail, and NOT any fault of its manufacture or design...

                    its a shame more people cant admit to their foolish mistakes, learn from them and move on, without trying to place the blame on someone else. the problems they face in life are usually a product of their own ignorance and carelessness, and yet they seldom learn anything from them.
                    The problem is the lawyers who convince the people involved in an accident that they can sue based on some ridiculous theory they dream up such as this case. I seriously doubt the injured party told the lawyers to sue the rope company.
                    Cheers, Hans
                    2007 Carver 41 CMY
                    Twin Volvo D6-370
                    Montreal, Canada
                    Midnight Sun I Photos

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