Ghost Yacht Reminds Us to Check Insurance

Sep 20, 2014 | Blog Post | 0 comments

Ghost Yacht Reminds Us to Check Insurance

Have you heard about the wandering yacht some call a ghost ship that beached itself in New Hampshire? It will have you checking your yacht insurance policy!

This past winter, a 70-foot yacht named the Guest List washed up along the shore of popular holiday town Hampton Beach. Residents wondered where it came from and who owned the vessel; and were even more curious to know the story behind the mystery vessel that showed up with no motor and devoid of furnishings.

Video of ghost yacht

Since no owners or yacht insurance company seemed to be claiming it naturally the population of a small town faced with such a strange occurrence as a mystery yacht turned to hearsay.

The rumor mill gained steam; and before long, people were convinced it had escaped from the set of a Denzel Washington action film. Well, except for those who were certain it was abandoned by drug smugglers. And, of course, there were other theories!

In May, the Boston Globe reported the real story behind the stray yacht marooned in Hampton Beach. It turned out to be a tale of very bad luck and lapsed yacht insurance.

Marcelo and Andresa Nunes bought the Guest List with the intention of having it refurbished at Hampton Harbor Boatworks. They had dreams of sailing to Florida where they would tie up at a marina and call the yacht home for themselves and their three children.

The couple alleged they paid thousands of dollars for twin diesel motors they never received (from someone who skipped town). Subsequently their business idea for Brazil during the soccer World Cup failed and they moved to Mexico.

Their hopes for the Guest List became more complicated when the yacht broke free of its mooring twice – the second time, of course, winding up a fixture on the shore of Hampton Beach. When it became lodged on the marshy shoreline, the bottom of the yacht was badly gashed. The closest boatyard capable of making the professional repairs needed is located out of town.

On the bright side, a yacht without motors isn’t as significant of a threat to the environment because it isn’t leaking anything.

What do you do with a massive yacht stranded on a beach when you’re living in another country? Well, it becomes more complicated when you’ve let your yacht insurance lapse. Costs for towing and repairs are now something that the Nunes family must try to raise and they’re looking at upwards of $16,000 for repairs – and more to get the vessel to a boatyard that can fix the damage.

What’s the moral of the story of the wandering yacht of New Hampshire?

Do background and/reference checks before giving an individual a significant amount of money for equipment or services. Better yet, work exclusively with trusted boat yards in your community and make sure they have adequate marine insurance coverage for their business.

  • Don’t let your yacht insurance lapse – even if your yacht is moored and you leave the country!
  • Create a budget for all of your yacht expenses including maintenance, repairs and insurance prior to selecting a vessel to purchase.
  • If you will be unable to check on your yacht for long periods of time while you are on a trip, staying in a second home or perhaps living in another country. Have one or more contact people that will periodically check on your vessel and let you know if anything is askew as well as be prepared to transport it to safety in the event of an impending sever storm.

Global Marine Insurance has been serving the boating community for 25 years. When you call you can expect award winning service and custom yacht insurance coverage options. Don’t let your yacht become the next ghost ship, contact us today for a quick no-hassle quote.


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