Boat missing since 2008 appears off Spanish coast

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As he swam toward the coast of Nantucket, Mass., in August 2008, Scott Douglas watched his yellow fishing boat disappear and thought it would be the last time he’d ever see the Queen Bee – a 26-foot center console fishing boat made by Regulator.

But earlier this week, more than three years after Douglas, 58, and his brother-in-law were tossed off the boat by a wave, the U.S. Coast Guard called to say the vessel had washed up on the Spanish coast. It was rusty and covered in barnacles, but intact.

“It looks entirely different,” Douglas told upon seeing photos of his boat. “That’s amazing.”

Douglas remembers that the water was restless on the day he set out to sea and the fish weren’t biting. He tried to keep the boat stationary, bracing himself as huge rollers crashed into it.

Eventually, a rogue wave knocked Douglas and his brother-in-law, Rich St. Pierre, off the boat.

Douglas swam for about an hour and made it to shore on Smith’s Point, a beach off the coast of Nantucket. He walked up to a cabin and asked to use the phone to alert the Coast Guard. Not long afterward, he saw St. Pierre walking on dry land.

Lt. Joe Klinker, a Coast Guard spokesman, told the most likely scenario is that the boat somehow got across the continental shelf and into the Gulf Stream.

He said it’s rare, but not unheard of, for an object off the coast of the United States to drift across the Atlantic to Europe. But a boat? “I’ve never heard of anything like this,” Klinker said.

The ability to withstand the hardships of the Atlantic has a lot to do with the make of the boat, Klinker said. “It probably could have floated for another three years,” he said.

“We had the privilege of speaking with the owner, Scott Douglas, earlier today. God is good. Both Mr. Douglas and his brother-in-law were OK,” Regulator president Joan Maxwell said in an e-mail to Soundings Trade Only. “To have this boat show up three and a half years [later], all the way across the Atlantic, is nothing short of amazing. This is a testament to the great hull design by Lou Codega and our dedicated manufacturing team.”

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9 comments on “Boat missing since 2008 appears off Spanish coast

  1. Richard Strauss

    As a fomer Regulator owner and having in-depth knowledge of the construction and quality of Regulator, I am NOT surprised at all!! Can’t beat them! And neither could mother nature!

  2. JRS

    I have just two questions:

    If he is good, then why did God knock them out of the boat?


    Were there any fish under it?

  3. Steve D'A.

    Photos please, what does she look like, was she floating upright and continuing to self bail after all this time? Is it possible she made two circuits of the Atlantic as it seems like it would take way less than 3.5 years to drift on the Stream to Spain? Seems as if she would have iced over if she was in the N. Atlantic in winter too. Pretty amazing, well done Regulator and Lou Codega

  4. freedomsailor

    Well, JRS, God was in a testing mood that day. He wanted to see how long the boat would stay afloat.

    Also, of course there were fish under it. Fish are in the ocean, the boat was at least somewhat afloat in the ocean, so therefore FISH WERE UNDER IT! Next, you will probably ask, “What kind of fish were under the boat.”

  5. JWG

    JRS—God works in mysterious ways…the only thing we know that if x happens and it is good then God is good. If however x is not good, but causes anything good to happen, then God is also good since things (which seem at the moment) bad appear the work of the devil, but God’s omnipotence and omniscience mean the devil operates at God’s pleasure and therefore “bad” events can be said to be orchestrated by God too. So God is responsible for both good and bad events.

    When a bad outcome occurs then, God steps aside and lets the devil have his way. To preserve God’s goodness, it must be the case that when bad things happen, God must be allowing them because he plans greater goods to come from the bad.

    In this case, for example, perhaps the near-death experience caused the men to reexamine their priorities or maybe God wanted to do a work at Regulator Marine; to send them a much needed morale boost…a message that their work is important during this time of depression…who knows, and that is exactly the point….good outcomes are obvious proof that God is good and bad outcomes are only bad because we can’t see God’s plan.

    In summary, if an event appears to you to be good, it is proof that God is good. If it appears to be bad, it is only because you are not seeing that God intends to use the bad for a greater good…either way God is good.

    (For clarity, I am referring to Yahweh here when I reference God. The Bible is full of “bad” events brought on by God that were good for others…killing Egyptian first-born children; world flood; Jephthah’s sacrifice of his daughter; etc.)

  6. marty

    Dudle: There are no USCG standards requiring level floation foam in a 26 foot boat. Requlations are for boats 20 foot and under. They reason that it stayed afloat is because of the quality construction methods that regulator uses. They use the foam to increase regidity of the entire hull structure. Marty, President
    Columbus Marine Repair LLC

  7. Marty

    I can’t believe that the Spansish Government is keeping the boat. Perhaps they are jealous over the fact that they have never been able to build a boat or ship, that would stay afloat period!

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