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"Hook, Line & Sink Her!"


The Death of Trawler F/V Ylad

A Cargo Law Mystery For You To Solve

On The Scene Off The Coast of Estonia ?

Feature Date: December 25, 2006

Event Date: ???, 2006

Countryman & McDaniel

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"Overlooking Runway 25 - Right, at Los Angeles International Airport"

On The Scene -- Off The Coast of Estonia ?

A Cargo Law Mystery For You To Solve

Update: Cargo Law Mystery Solved -- Our Most Surprising Ever!

It Took Our Readers Only 3 Days!

 A 2006 Countryman & McDaniel

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"Hook, Line & Sink Her!!"

On The Scene

Off The Coast of Estonia?

A Cargo Law Mystery For You To Solve

The Death of Trawler F/V Ylad

Or Was She?

A Cargo Nightmare Prize Contender

The Date: November - December 2006 ???

The Time: ???

The Place: Off The Coast of Estonia?


F/V Ylad In Her Last Hours

Type of Vessel - Fishing Trawler

Flag: ?

Built: ?

Crew: ?

Overall Length -?

Displacement - D.W.T - ?

Gross tonnage: ?

The Prolog To Disaster -- Operations Off The Coast of Estonia?

A Cargo Law Mystery


PROLOG >> According to our source, the trawler F/V Ylad met her fate in the period of November to early December 2006, sinking somewhere off the coast of Estonia.

We are not so sure. The days are short in Estonia during Nov. & Dec. with seas usually far more rough. For 2006 the area was said cloudy about 100% of the time.

We find no news reports of a F/V Ylad sinking -- nor is there any such vessel listed in our past Daily Vessel Casualties reports back to 1994. "Ylad" sounds Swedish.

So now -- a new Cargo Law Mystery For You To Solve!

The "where" & "when" are very important -- but we think something more may be going on here. Follow the clues.

Over the years -- YOU readers have never failed to solve one of these mysteries -- usually within a few days or a manner that embarrasses us!
Report To Cargo Law

Mystery Solutions Fron Our Readers - See the pictures first -- Solutions began Dec, 27 2006

Thanks to our reader Douglas Brown of Tacoma, WA --

We have the greatest solution to a Cargo Law Mystery -- ever.

In only 3 days.

Geeez - She Was A Warship! The Story Is Amazing!

We had the wrong name, the wrong place & the wrong year!

Michael S. McDaniel - Your Editor

F/V Ylad Riding Low & Listing To Port

No Flag

No Crew

Crew Abandoned Already?

All F/V Ylad Electronic Gear At Least Appears Present

Going Down By The Stern

F/V Ylad Starts To Heal Over

F/V Ylad Capsized!

The Clock Setting Needs Study (see below)

Bow of F/V Ylad Heads For The Sky

F/V Ylad Headed For The Deep Six

Helicoper Pad Not Ready For Traffic

Farewell F/V Ylad

These Are 5 Life Rafts

But If This Event Was Fully Witnessed -- Why Life Rafts -- So Gathered?

Likely An Automatic Release

Source Reports This As The Rescue Vessel --

Ye Gads --This means a Third Vessel Is Involved to take this photo.

Bringing In 12 Person Rated Life Rafts -- But Where Is The Crew?

Light Has Changed. Is This Next Day?

Crew Rescued Last Night?

Life Rafts Show No Use By Occupants -?

Hoisting Life Rafts Aboard

The Clock Seems Not Correct --

But If We Follow The Time Stamp Sequence (Above) .......

........Then This Picture Was Taken Either Before F/V Ylad Sank --

-- Or The Next Day (Note "25" Vs. "26") We Assume This Is The Next Day

More --

This Does Not Appear Your Normal "Estonia Winter Sea" Rescue Clothing.

(Yes, We See The Red Jumpsuits To The Right.)

The Temperature Would Be About 8 Degrees -- And Where Are Those Survivors?

Was This A Contolled Event? Why?

Real Rescue -- Or Intentional Sinking For Test Or Other Purpose? We Are Suspicious.
One of Our Readers Knows -- Dec. 25 2006
A Cargo Law Mystery For You To Solve!
Report To Cargo Law

Mystery Answers From Our Readers ....... Mystery Solved In 3 Days!

Dec. 27 2006 -- Ok, The Name Is A Call Sign & Not F/V Ylad !
"Is it possible that YLAD is a call sign? That would be normal locations for it on some international fishing vessels, where the permit number is usually the call sign, and required to be marked in those areas--bridge wings, and on deck visible from air--versus ship names, which would be bow and stern. YLxx call signs are Latvian, so it correlates to the area of the purported sinking. The Latvia telecom folks, maybe a historical inquiry with them will yield an ID."
Anonymous Serving Member of the U.S. Coast Guard
Dec. 27 2006 -- Her Name Was F/V Olga -- For a time
"The ship is not named the F/V Ylad. The pictures are too small to see clearly what it says, but the name on the bow, which is also on the sides near the net handling gear is definately not YLAD. I'm positive the YLAD is a callsign, as the 4-letter combination is very common on European fishing vessels. The callsign is for a Latvian (YLA-YLZ prefix)."

"I found a photo of the former British trawler F/V Cordella which was UK & sold to Latvian interests-- renamed F/V Olga. Photo shows a ship identical to the one in the feature. (search for "Olga"). The page claims the ship sank off Newfoundland in the summer of 2005. Which, BTW, is quite possible by the camera shots."

Douglas Brown - Tacoma, WA

Editor Note:

Douglas Brown is clearly on to something. This does appear to be the same vessel he has found. Bravo Zulu!

Assuming the sale of F/V Olga in 2005 -- What happened next? What was the fate of F/V Olga?

Great work Douglas Brown ! Let's now solve the Mystery! F/V Olga was sold to who? For what purpose?


Dec. 28 2006 -- Douglas Brown Named Cargo Law Sr. Research Advocate --

"The ship has a LOT more history. This isn't just some old factory trawler- it's a former warship!
Douglas Brown - Tacoma, WA

HMS Cordella - British Warship At War 1982

"The ship is the former HMS Cordella, which was used as a British minesweeper in the Falklands conflict.

"Cordella built 1973 Clellands Shipbuilding Co, Wallsend, UK. LOA 68.89, Owned by Skeggs at the time. In 1982 she was one of 5 Hull Trawlers used as Minesweepers in the Falklands Conflict, and participated in the landing at San Carlos as HMS Cordella. Shortly after this photo she returned to U.K. and was chartered by Royal Navy again for training. 2000 sold by Benella Ltd to Eytrasalt h/f, Latvia and renamed F/V Olga."
Douglas Brown - Tacoma, WA

From The Cargo Letter - May 25 2005 -- Researched by Douglas Brown

"Amazing turn of events in one day for the 15 crew of Latvian fishing boat F/V Gideon after their trawler caught fire off Newfoundland. The crew was able to extinguish the fire, but then the trawler started to take on water. An Icelandic vessel nearby responded to the distress call and rescued the crew, who were then transferred to the world's largest luxury liner, the Queen Mary II, for transport to New York in comfort, with a medical center on-board. No word yet of injuries or the status of the trawler. (Wed., May 25, 2005.) UPDATE>> F/V Gideon has sunk. Crew are reported to be safe. European fisheries patrol vessel Jean Charcot has recovered the life rafts."
The Cargo Letter -- Thurs., May 26, 200

From Lloyds - May 25 2005 -- Researched by Douglas Brown

"Following received from Halifax RCC, timed 1839, UTC: Fishing Gideon reported a fire on board off Flemish Cap, in lat 47 55N, long 45 31W, at 1614, UTC, May 25. All 15 crew were safely taken off by fishing Peter Johanssen. The vessel is presently reported to be sinking.

London, May 26 -- A press report, dated today, states: The crew of Latvian fishing Gideon that caught fire off Newfoundland yesterday was rescued by an Icelandic vessel that responded to a call for help. "The 15 personnel on board have been evacuated and they are now safe on board the Icelandic fishing vessel," said Lieut. Sue Stefko of the Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Halifax. Stefko said the crew appeared to be OK, and no one received serious enough injuries to require medical evacuation. The Latvian fishing vessel caught fire on the Flemish Cap, about 400 kilometres east of St. John's, Nfld. The fire was put out, but Stefko said the boat appeared to be sinking. She said a nearby French fishing vessel would transport the crew to St. John's, Nfld.

London, May 26 -- Following received from Halifax RCC, timed 0745, UTC: Fisging Gideon, YLAO, MMSI No.271081000, length 69 metres, owner Gideon Baltic, sank in lat 47 52N, long 45 18W, at 2200, UTC, May 25. All 15 crew were rescued by fishing Peter Johanssen and are now being taken to St.John's, Nfld, by oceanographis research Jean Charcot." Read Report

Mystery Solved By Our Reader Douglas Brown

The amazing life & death of ex-HMS Cordella would have gone unnoticed by the world -- had it not been for some amazing pictures -- posted on an obscure Russian Website and misidentified as the sinking of a Russian trawler off Estonia in Nov. 2006. Our Cargo Law Moscow Correspondent Mike Voitenko found the posting & next relayed the story -- to YOU readers as a Cargo Law Mystery.

Our Cargo Law Mystery suggested the wrong ship name, the wrong location & the wrong year! Finding the truth was a daunting task.

Thanks mainly to our reader Douglas Brown of Tacoma, WA we now have the complete picture of a quite normal 1,535gt fishing trawler which was launched in 1973 as F/V Cordella --operating in New Zealand waters in the early 1980's -- and then pressed into the service of Her Majesty's Royal Navy as Royal Fleet Auxillary mine sweeper HMS Cordella (MCM11) for service under fire in 1982 for the Falklands War and participating in the famous landing at San Carlos. After the war she was charterted by the Royal Navy for additional training service and subsequently sold as F/V Olga (vessel ID 549030173) -- plying her trade -- until her tragic death under Latvian ownership as F/V Gideon off Newfoundland on May 26 2005.

It all comes together -- now the pictures are making sense & verified.

This was not the story contemplated when we posted the feature on Christmas Day 2006. But no Cargo Law Mystery has ever gone unsolved. Thanks this time to the rather amazing talents of Douglas Brown. These stories amaze us. You just can't make this stuff up!

Goodbye HMS Cordella ..... thanks for your service.
Many thanks to our Readers,

Mystery Solutions Continue - The Life of F/V Cordella Reviewed

Dec. 29 2006 - F/V Olga Scraps With The Canadians
"The Canadian Government may have more of the puzzle pieces in the sinking of F/V Olga in bureaucratic storage. Their Marine Pollution Prevention - Enforcement page lists a total of C$283,000 in fines levied against this vessel in 2 seperate incidents, one 26 Feb. 02 for the unreported illegal discharge of 20 L of oil totalling C$170,000 and a second offence on 05 Apr. 01 for the unreported illegal discharge of around 40,000 L of contaminated ballast water and having no Response Organization Agreement in place. Both incidents having taken place off the coast of Newfoundland."
JB Johnson

Shippers Must Have Quality Marine Cargo Insurance ........ Because......... "Ship Happens! ©"

To Repeat -- No Matter How Careful You Are -- Or Who You Hire ....... "Ship Happens! ©"


"Ship Happens! ©"

The Dedication of This Feature Is Simple: To The Crew of F/V Ylad and her families ......whoever they are.

SPECIAL NOTE: The historic dangers of carriage by sea continue to be quite real. Shippers must be encouraged to purchase high quality marine cargo insurance from their freight forwarder or customs brokerIt's dangerous out there.


The Vessel
Loss Report

New Zealand Maritime Index For F/V Olga

F/V Olga On Sales Lot

HMS Cordella (MCM11)- taken from the trades for war

Royal Fleet Auxillary In The South Atlantic

Crew Contacts

Britsh Naval Forces Falklands War

The Falklands War

The Falklands War

The Falklands War In Detail

Landing At San Carlos - with HMS Cordella

Our Daily Vessel Casualties - stay informed

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The Cargo Letter Photo Gallery of Transport Loss - for all the air & ocean features including those below --

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The Greatest Container Losses Of All Time - these are the grand fathers -

M/V OOCL America

M/V APL China

SPECIAL NOTE: The historic dangers of carriage by sea continue to be quite real. Shippers must be encouraged to purchase high quality marine cargo insurance from their freight forwarder or customs broker.  It's dangerous out there.
Thanks To Our Contributors For The
"Hook, Line & Sink Her!" Feature

Our Contributors for this feature is:
Anonymous photo contributor who wishes to be anonymous*

Anonymous Serving Member of the U.S. Coast Guard

Douglas Brown - Tacoma, WA

J.B. Johnson

Mike Voitenko - our Cargo Law Moscow Correspondent

The Cargo Letter appreciates the continuing efforts of this valued contributors. Thanks Pals!

NOTE: Please Provide Us With Your Additional Information For This Loss.

EDITOR'S NOTE FOR SURVEYORS, ATTORNEYS & MARINE ADJUSTERS: The Internet edition effort of The Cargo Letter now celebrates it's 8th Year of Service -- making us quite senior in this segment of the industry. We once estimated container underway losses at about 1,500 per year. Lloyd's put that figure at about 10,000 earlier this year. Quite obviously, the reporting mechanism for these massive losses is not supported by the lines. News of these events is not posted to the maritime community. Our new project is to call upon you -- those handling the claims -- to let us know of each container loss at sea-- in confidentiality. Many of you survey on behalf of cargo interests with no need for confidentiality. Others work for the lines & need to be protected. As a respected Int'l publication, The Cargo Letter enjoys full press privileges & cannot be forced to disclose our sources of information. No successful attempt has ever been made. If a personal notation for your report is desired -- each contributor will be given a "hot link" to your company Website in each & every report. Please take moment & report your "overside" containers to us. If you do not wish attribution, your entry will be "anonymous." This will will benefit our industry -- for obvious reasons! McD

* NOTE: The Cargo Letter wants you to know that by keeping the identity of our contributors 100% Confidential, you are able to view our continuing series of "Cargo Disasters." Our friends send us materials which benefit the industry. The materials are provided to our news publication with complete and enforceable confidentiality for the sender. In turn, we provide these materials to you.  

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