Uncontrollable Urge

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Uncontrollable Urge (#) (-2013), 30-foot sailboat that sank during a race around San Clemente Island in March 2013. Five people were rescued in the incident, and one died. Craig Thomas Williams, 36 drowned.

In the News~

March 9, 2013 [LAT]: “One dead, five rescued in San Clemente Island sailboat accident. One person is dead and five others were rescued after a sailboat accident at San Clemente Island during a sailing contest called the Islands Race, the Coast Guard said Saturday. The 30-foot sailboat Uncontrollable Urge issued a mayday call about 9:30 p.m. Friday as the boat's rudder failed and the craft began drifting toward the rocky shore of the island. Initially the sailors declined assistance from the Coast Guard and other boaters. But about 11 p.m., as the sailors attempted to anchor the vessel, its anchor would not catch and the vessel drifted even closer to shore. The Coast Guard dispatched a helicopter from San Diego and the cutter Edisto was diverted to the scene. Finally, the sailboat entered the surf line and was broken apart by waves, forcing the crew to abandon the vessel. Six sailors were hoisted into the MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and taken to a hospital where one man was pronounced dead, the Coast Guard said. The accident occurred amid eight-foot swells and 10-knot winds.”

March 9, 2013 [Republican and Herald]: “Sailboat race accident survivors released. Five sailors who survived when their boat smashed into rocks during a race in storm-churned seas off Southern California, killing a fellow crew member, have been released from San Diego hospitals. The survivors were treated for cuts, bruises and hypothermia, Chuck Hope, commodore of the San Diego Yacht Club, told UT San Diego on Sunday. The yacht club was a co-host of the 139-nautical-mile Islands Race. The five crew members of the Uncontrollable Urge were rescued after the 32-foot sailboat lost its steering and the craft began drifting toward San Clemente Island, where it broke apart, Coast Guard Petty Officer Connie Gawrelli said Saturday. Craig Thomas Williams, a 36-year-old architect from Serra Mesa, was killed. Race officials identified the other crew members as James Gilmore, the skipper and owner of the boat; Mike Skillcorn; Doug Pajak; Ryan Georgianna; and Vince Valdes. On Friday night, the crew radioed the mayday call and also activated a feature on the boat that provides authorities with GPS coordinates and other crucial information, she said. But the crew then declined assistance and instead requested a tow boat. Stormy conditions, however, kept the tow boat from getting to them. "They were not in immediate danger and thought they would be able to manage completing the race and get assistance on their own," Hope said. "Then things got worse." He said the crew couldn't deploy a life raft or anchor the boat. They abandoned ship when the boat entered the surf line and broke apart. When the Coast Guard reached the crew, they found Williams unresponsive in the water, the San Diego Medical Examiner's office said. He and the other five crew members were hoisted into a helicopter and flown to a hospital. Williams was a member of the Silver Gate Yacht Club in San Diego, where the Uncontrallable Urge is docked, said Carey Storm, the club's commodore. "This is a very difficult time for the Williams family, the skipper of the Uncontrollable Urge and other surviving crew members," Carey Storm said. "(The Club) and the entire Southern California racing community is a close family, and the loss of one of our members impacts us all greatly."”