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April 27, 2007


dan olson

It was a UFO just like Dyatlov Pass mystery.

phil chen

anyone going more than a few miles off shore, needs a solid foam lifejacket, and a separate nylon web harness with a quarter inch steel cable and climbers clip on the end. Clip in to a metal fitting in the center of the boat. The outfit is complete with a portable, personal epirb and a strobe spot light. A "viking" or "mustang" grade survial suit would be very helpful as well and is my first go to. Coast Guard wears them, wonder why?

At no time should any crew member leave the cockpit, never, never in the dark and never without the above gear, even then they must watched at all times by another crew member, who should have separate line attached to the "space walker". Most of the time the gear should be worn in the cockpit, especially an open one such as the osprey. Clipping in at all times is mandatory.

Down below an inflatable vest can be worn. while sleeping or resting.

The above is pretty much standard, and those knowing of this venture needed to alert the coast guard that a bunch of drunks without any experience or proper equipment were headed out into the blue. Its so much cheaper to have the Guard come over and talk to them than looking for them with 10 planes, five boats, and a hundred people for a month. Not too mention the cutter.

the Kaz ii should have been found with three bodies clipped into the center of the boat and just beaten to death by the violent heaving of the boat, especially as all three were grossly out of shape and "middled aged". Guys, the boat is always fine, its the crew that have to get off. The pounding can become so violent that inexperienced crew will decide to swim for it. Skip has to know how to hove too effectively to stop the beating. Kas's mis-set sails may reflect his attempt to hove to before they tried to swim to the point.

Crew does not like the rules?, turn back and kick their asses off the boat. No refund.

phil chen

Like those above I watched the "unexplained file" TV show here in Michigan on comcast on 10/2013. I was curious about something that was immediately obvious to me. Here in the Great Lakes we often have "bow echo" storms that require immediate “max” reefing. In the case of the KAZ, the video from the crew cam, has a comment about bad weather coming in from the north? In fact in the opinion of all, bad weather did strike just after they left up and stayed with them for at least two days, wind estimates range from 25k to 45k I imagine seas to match. Manageable but very uncomfortable. Here is my point. The very first picture of the craft taken from the Helicopter shows a huge sag in the forestay. The jib is on a roller fuller. Ain’t no way in hell king Kong is going to roll up that jib in more than a flat calm. Case in point it was not furled or reefed,or hauled down, sheets apparently were not cleated, or were set to run off wind. Second the Main was reefed to the first reef points. Showing some awareness of the weather.. However the main sheet tackle had been removed from the boom bail, jury rigged around the reef lines and also taken off the car of the traveler track. Thus the boom was hard to port without any clear means of belaying it. In the pictures taken in port the main sheet tackle is hanging straight down and the working end spun off and tied to the solid life line, while the boom is resting on the coachtop, the tackle is spun inside out so, if it was not tied down to the hull cleat, the boom would have been flipping around like a telephone pole rolling downhill. (also notice the loose vang) So while the inside of the boat was neat and tidy the important parts were a mess and flying her sheets in the wind. No experienced sailor would dream of rigging the boat as above, (backstay tension, to be enough to reduce the sag in the forestay, to be less than the diameter of the roller furler drum in the highest wind condition?)(maybe you could use the vang as a preventer) or even think of leaveing the cockpit in those conditions, and certainly everyone who calls themselves a sailor would have clipped in on a short lead and a heavy harness. This was the first four hours of 4000 mile trip through dangerous waters? These people either faked it, were dead coma drunk, or had no clue.

MIke Dolin

It is 09/11/2013. I just watched The Unexplained Files, and this was one of the stories. As I was watching this something hit me. Surely, the investigators on this case contacted the powers that be to see if there happened to be any satellites in the area taken pictures that may have spotted the boat either right before the incident or even after. I would think that these satellites have thermo cameras. Just a thought.

Brianna Quest

A trip like this is surely not to be taken lighlty, especially by experinced sailors such as these guys were. I`ve stumbled across this story some time ago and I was wondering if new info ever came up about the three men.


The evidance has to be with the fishing line thats been caught in its rudder. Its possible the men couldnt steer the boat, so they decided to go in the water to get the fishing line untangled. Somehow they got into difficulty and the boat drifted off.


I think piracy can be ruled out by the amount of valubles still on board and no signs of any type of struggle.

Some type of insurance scam? I dont know anything about these 3 men so would be unfair to comment.

Their wallets were found inside the boat according to the above report, not on deck as some of you have said.

Objects found on deck seemingly undisturbed such as clothing rules out bad weather or a freak wave throwing one or more of the men overboard.

They went for a swim? All three men have been described as 'not very strong swimmers, but ocean wise'. This statement suggests they would NOT go for a swim in shark infestited waters!

The most likely cause is accidential over-board. Perhaps the fishing line stuck in the rudder is a vital piece of evidence?

A possible scenario is one of the men takes off his shirt etc, folds them neatly on the deck to enjoy fishing in the sun when his line gets caught in the rudder. While attempting to free it he falls overboard and the other men somehow get into difficulty rescuing him and the boat drifts away.

That scenario does though throw up two important questions: Why no anchor was dropped? and Why the floatation ring was not immediately thrown in?

The sandbank theory is another possibility. That all three got in to push the boat free. Would explain the clothes on deck and why the flotation ring was not used, but again surely the experienced seamen would throw an anchor down? The fishing line could of become tangled in the rudder during the drift.

Joseph Froncioni

The search was called off on May 9 with no sign of the men's whereabouts. I wonder who has the movie rights.

John Howland

Has anything changed regarding the Kaz II? I came across this story on "Noonsite" (boaters site) & have been intrigued ever since. Any news?

(N. Fla.)

Joseph Froncioni

Today's Sydney Morning Herald states the following:
"Perhaps they ran aground on a sandbar near George Point, from where the 9.8 metre catamaran last made radio contact on a Sunday evening in mid-April. The skipper Derek Batten and his crewmates, brothers Peter and Jim Tunstead, jumped into the warm Coral Sea waters to try to push the boat free. A gust of wind came up, carrying the Kaz II away before they could scramble back onboard, leaving them stranded.

This could explain why the Kaz II was found three days later drifting 60 nautical miles off Townsville, its engine still running but with no sign of the crew. It could explain why the only items missing from the boat were three pairs of sunglasses and two hats, why T-shirts and towels were left neatly folded on the deck, and why down in the cabin, laptops, mobile phones, wallets, watches, cameras and a Sunday paper were still spread out on the table."
Hmm. Something to consider.

Audrey Jones

Hi, One thing I think you and most other reports have wrong is that there was no food on the table and it wasn't set for dinner. This was corrected by the first rescuer on board and quoted in the Townsville Bulletin. The contents of the table, you actually describe as he described them. That's what I think is odd. All the most valuable things on board, all laid out on the table.
That points to the 'seen something they shouldn't have' theory. A 'threatening' boat came alongside and they got all their valuables together as some sort of payoff, but they were forced off the boat and maybe killed. Why would they have been made to take their clothes off? Don't know. To avoid quick identification? Did they put their clothes in neat piles as a clue that something's wrong? How many people make a neat pile when they take their clothes off? Mind you the report says that the whole boat was tidy. Very odd. If they were tidy people then they probably wouldn't have left the fenders out. And if they were tidy people, then they wouldn't have left wallets out. Who needs a wallet when you're off shore and not planning to go ashore for at least another 25 hours or so?
Co-incidentally, we bought a small monohull in Bowen a few weeks earlier and sailed up to Magnetic Island (just off Townsville). We actually failed to make contact with Bowne VMR. They didn't acknowledge our call. Also we were told that they only operate until 17:00 so the report of this call at 18:30 sounds odd to me. Plus the point of logging on to the VMR is that if you don't log off, someone comes out to look for you. Why didn't the VMR initiate a search earlier?
Our boat arrived back on Magnetic Island approx 03:00 on Sunday 25th March 2007. This is quite a scary story for us!
One more point is that the call tothe VMR needn't necessarily have been made from CAZii. It could have been made from the 'rogue vessel' if such a thing existed


One thing that puzzles me is that the wallets were left on deck close to where they were eating. Every time I go out I put my wallet in the cabin (there are no shops out there)why would they have left wallets on the deck, it all seems too well organised to me.



Hey bro,

Only one comment - I would try to find out how long they had been planning this trip for. My guess is that a trip such as this should have taken 3to 6 months to plan properly. If they planned it in a few days....then their motives might lean towards something more on the negative side.



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