I have been asked to elaborate on the "lights" (in one of Saucy's posts) and "buoy" (location post 219) so yesterday I got up to date and post 479 has a picture which immediately set of another "odd occurrence that happened on this passage " - the search vessel - pertinent because that is very similar (the one we saw was not red but grey and a helicopter landing pad was not evident) to a ship we saw "randomly sailing" - ships go via the shortest route between 2 points - it is cheapest and quickest - they do not go on one course, turn to anther course, head back to where they came from turn etc... that ship was searching for something! I f it was for MH370 - for gods sake we are a sailing boat and we are in the search area and they did not bother to stop us and ask us if we saw anything??? But then again when did they search in the Andaman sea start?
So from our ships gps log the following can be established.
Garmin still have not responded as to their time zone map, and so without actually knowing what time sunset and sunrise actually occurred I have shown the approximate night time
It did not happen on the night of the 3rd as there is no submarine cable in the location which is what we concluded it must be .
On the night of the 4th a bright light was visible over the horizon at about 1 oçlock from the bow through the night. How do I know it was the night of the 4th? We discussed what it might be -
Unlikely flare from unmarked rig (yes we got 4 year old charts) - We have seen many big bright flare stacks - sail through the Arabian gulf and you can see the glow from 30 to 40 miles and even then you can see "flicker".
A work ship working on the submarine cable was the most likely conclusion which is what we put it down to as there was a submarine cable on our chart which put it about in the correct bearing.
On the night of the 5th it was at about 2oclock off the bow. We assumed it was the same working ship - but having plotted it, that is not possible as the submarine cable was now to our port!
An approximate moving fix puts its estimated position as shown above. Does anyone have upto date charts, or info on what might be there because the most likely explanation to date is a naval flotilla which would substantiate assumption of the buoy!
On the 7th March Our crew spotted something in the water and I was on the helm - my first reaction was - nightmare DAN buoy (long stick) so we turned to to starboard to see if we can help. As we were getting closer I thought no flag so it must have been bashing around for a while and I hope there is not a half eaten dead person hanging onto it!
The closest picture I could find of the buoy is this with a few significant exceptions!
We have commercial diving business where we maintain weather buoys and oceanographic instrumentation - so I have alot of experience with those sort of buoys!. Like the one above those buoys are yellow and have lights - they are meant to be seen as with the equipment on them they are very expensive!
All three of us concur the buoy we saw was NOT YELLOW it was red or orange and/or some black. that the diameter was no more than 1m, it had a whip antenna not highly visible like the antenna on the buoy above) 2 to 3m (, with small solar panels around the antenna base.
This adds up to a buoy that DOES NOT WANT TO BE SEEN EASILY!
The picture above is of a acoustic target buoy. The one we saw may have been one as well, or part of an acoustic target array. It may also have been a drifting wave buoy, but as I pointed out above - they are yellow, have lights and are expensive. Hence they are designed to be seen so shipping can avoid them!