UPDATE: Boat bound for Dominica sinks off Saba; passengers safe

The remnants of the Grace Mary Ann on the coast of Saba

All passengers who were on board a boat bound for Dominica that sank of the coast of Saba are reported to be safe in St. Eustatius on Monday morning.

The boat, the Grace Mary Ann, sank in rough seas on Sunday night with about eight passengers on board.

Three boats, Nature Isle, Grace Mary Ann and Grace Richie, left St. Maarten for Dominica early on Sunday night but soon ran into rough seas, probably associated with the passage of Tropical Storm Rafael.

The Nature Isle returned to St. Maarten. However, the other two vessels continued on.

Off the coast of Saba, the Grace Mary Ann ran into problems and sank but all the passengers were picked up by the Grace Richie, which eventually sent out a ‘May Day’ signal.

Rescue personnel from St. Eustatius and St. Maarten responded and the boat was guided safely to St. Eustatius.

DNO was informed by one of the passengers from the Nature Isle that everyone is safe and in good spirits.

The Grace Mary Ann
The port in Saba was still being pounded by rough seas on Monday morning


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  1. Shawty
    October 16, 2012


    YOU are so right, everyone on the boat are adults and not one of them can stand and say theyre not going, if captain tell them were leaving now no matter what they jump onboard, i agree its all material but at the same time people work so hard to earn what they have and for it to go down the drain in that way its terrible.. a friend of mine had his pick up on the boat and he loose it.. whos goin to pay for it? wen u loose one box on the boat u dont get anything for it much less for a vehicle… the boat was properly loaded.. im happy that every one is ok and will reach DA safe..
    Nature Isle left the same time and return to sxm why didnt grace mary ann and grace ritchie did the same? only today Nature Isle left for DA to arrive before midday in Dominica

  2. uh
    October 16, 2012

    what all you talking about nor, which rough sea..de boat encountered problem zor sot eh. if it wasn’t storm time it would still happen. what about the man in colihaut the sea was soo rough it take his boat so he jump in de sea to rescue his boat and 3 people go an rescue him all 3 alost lost their lives so what worse. stop crticizing de captain eh and get the story first. smdh shait man

  3. smh
    October 16, 2012

    what all you talking about nor, which rough sea..de boat encountered problem zor sot eh. if it wasn’t storm time it would still happen. what about the man in colihaut the sea was soo rough it take his boat so he jump in de sea to rescue his boat and 3 people go an rescue him all 3 alost lost their lives so what worse. stop crticizing de captain eh and get the story first. smdh shait man

  4. me that
    October 16, 2012

    Well the old maryann made it time it was not seaworthy poorly maintained dominica needs to improve d marine standards

  5. colorblind
    October 16, 2012

    We are all happy that everyone is okay and while I agree these are adults, the captain has to exercise good judgement. Under maritime law, he is ultimately responsible for the passengers. While I can choose not to travel based on weather reports, I also expect the captain to be responsible. That is why the captain is normally supposed to be the last one to stay with the ship as long as possible in an emergency. He has to ensure everything is in place before he leaves.

  6. birdy1964
    October 16, 2012

    Thank good they are save, really i don’t know no other boat from sxm to portsmouth. I know Errol. the green boats. I felt so sad, the boat should be insured.also what happen to the peoples who sent all there boxes home, with there receipt of purchases of good from st.Maarten, also payment for shipment. are these people going to be reimburse, I hope so. In my heart I which the insurance covered these people stuff, these people spent money these boxes. SXM life isn’t easy.

  7. Anonymous
    October 16, 2012

    God bless the people life are safe, and we should we happy there alive, because we would have been sad,so stop calling the people dumb and it it already happen already, it for a reason, God will provide!!!

  8. good
    October 16, 2012

    thank god no one died

    • October 16, 2012

      god knows everything. he’s the one in control

  9. sxm
    October 16, 2012

    I live in sxm and the sea was rough. I travelled by boat to and from anguilla on Friday. the evening was not as rough as the morning….I just wanted to get home before it got worse cuz the storm was on it’s way. after all it’s only 15-20 minutes from Anguilla so i knew I would get back before the storm. was about to ship stuff home to Dominica on Saturday with maryAnn but I figured so much rain and rough sea from Friday night, boats not gonna venture rough sea. I was wrong. Thank God I didn’t and that passengers are safe. God gave us wisdom…..we should use it! it’s Monday night and it’s still raining cats and dogs. streets are flooded and seas are rough. Stay safe everyone.

  10. Da overs 123
    October 15, 2012

    This captain should know the weather channel/Internet hope his insured?thank god no lost of lives,lesson to be learned god is not asleep.

  11. observer
    October 15, 2012

    They wasn,t passangers, they are employees. God bless their souls. They got a second chance to make it right with God. To the captain and every one invloved , Give god praise and thanks for his angels of mercies.

    October 15, 2012

    them man NO SXM have a place for boat and yachts to pack in the lagoon for shelther in bad storms i dnt know what they was thinking but tank the lord they are all safe THANK YOUUUUUUUUUUU LORD

  13. Get real
    October 15, 2012

    Do you think the captain wanted the boat to sink or to place his own life at risk? He has lost the most no matter how much ppl run their mouth, and some still talking about charge. Charge with what? Some people just vindictive. Have a heart and thank God everyone is ok.

  14. Goldie
    October 15, 2012

    Glory to Jah. Everyone is safe. I find the captains are irresponsible , atfer hearing that a storm was coming that way.

  15. TREYE
    October 15, 2012

    there is no one to blame
    but our government

    • ideal
      October 15, 2012

      why should the government be blamed did they not hear the tropical storm warning..this was all over the news even us in North America saw the warning..they were just foolish to try to go against nature

    • da2dabone
      October 15, 2012

      your jack how is Government to be blamed?

    • favors upon ya
      October 16, 2012

      what the government have to do with the discision of a sea captain… go and learn to be sensible man or keep your comment to yourself…

  16. TREYE
    October 15, 2012

    look like all dominican boats running aground or sink

    look all the boats in portsmouth are down

    now we have to pay the foriegner to carry our load

    • HMLV
      October 16, 2012

      Are you from Portsmouth, I am asking cause if you are you will realize that there are a number of boats both from portsmouth and other parts of the island which carry our produce to the other islands.

      SOmetimes before we allow ignorance to speak we should first sort out the facts. There are numerous boats that leave the port from Portmouth glanvillia on Sundays, Mondays, and tuesdays. SO before you get your self all confuse, go down to Beverly shipping and Grace hill Shipping to get information as to the names of the vessels and where they are from.

      There is Ricky who is from Portsmouth who goes to Guadeloupe,

      There is another from Bioche who also goes to Guadeloupe

      There is Abiding Love who do commercial movements from Portsmouth to Trinidad, St. Lucia, Montserrat, Saba, St. Maarten etc

      There’s nature Isle, Grace Olive, Grace Richie, to name those that can come to mind. SO my dear, i read comments everyday and it really hurts to see how ignorant our readers and writers can be. Think before you write, The whole world is reading.

  17. dominican
    October 15, 2012

    you guys dont try to go on rough sea with are small boat like that u guys know the sea is rough why u guys risce ur life at sea thanks god u all are alive

  18. dominican overs
    October 15, 2012

    how the hell bad weather is going towards the north and them so called captains going to the south right inside the storm. sorry to say money hard to find now , some one will have to pay for my f in things that was nnot act of god it was act of stupid man

    • Anonymous
      October 18, 2012

      U don’t know anything

  19. Oh plz
    October 15, 2012

    They left on Sunday instead of Saturday BECAUSE OF THE BAD WEATHER. They were scheduled to leave on Saturday. Nobody put any body life at risk deliberately. Stuff happens in good and bad weather. Some people need to stop talking crap and using dno for their personal vendettas.

  20. our daily bread
    October 15, 2012

    yes thank GOD they safe but i want money for my tings that lost on that boat hmpp

    • Anonymous
      February 1, 2013

      hey, I dive on saba, and i found cans of tuna, macedoine veg, hand written recipe books and other items clothing and yellow pages on the sea floor at about 40m……..glad to hear you guys were rescued……safe travels….

  21. October 15, 2012

    Not a smart decision to be in open water during a storm!! 8-O

  22. money back
    October 15, 2012


  23. MyMoney$$$!!!
    October 15, 2012

    I wan my money tht alone i can say …!!!!

    • Avril
      October 15, 2012

      good luck lol money is joke i know what i talking about

    • Me
      October 15, 2012

      Go and dive for it

      • October 16, 2012

        well while you saying you want your money i am saying praise god that the crew was give a second chance and praise god i received my boxes 3 weeks earlier i can only imagine how the people who were expecting their little goodies felt when they heard the boat sank but god is in control

  24. Anonymous
    October 15, 2012

    So glad you guys are safe alot of us living in St.maarten use that boat to send stuff to our families in Dominica.Glad u guys are ok.

  25. October 15, 2012

    They were in SXM,they heard and saw how the weather was,it was droadcast all over that we were expecting bad weather from sat into sunday nite,Could’nt they wait?

  26. 123
    October 15, 2012

    Are these boat captains LOCO or what? Didn’t they see the weather in that area? The area had a tropical storm warning. They playing with people life. The authorities should not have given them clearance to leave in the first place.

  27. .
    October 15, 2012

    Glory to God lives r saved and life can continue. otherwise families would be so sad today.. Thank God. Glory to God. I am indeed happy. In Jesus name Captain, you will have a new boat, bigger and better. I claim it for you in Jesus name. Keep your head up and stay on track :wink:

      October 15, 2012


    • 123
      October 15, 2012

      The final decision at sea is the captain’s. Families would be sad today because of his stupid decision to sail in that kind of weather. Yet you asking for a new boat in Jesus name? Wait and see!! Tiway Jézi en zafèh’w.

      • You Damm right
        October 15, 2012

        You r so right someone of the crew members family most have been praying. There is no excuse for what he did. And God does not bless those types of act. Now the consequence of his stupidety is ” HE WOULD HAVE TO REFUND THE PEOPLE BACK THEIR MONEY” We most learn to be honest is not about he is my friend, family or byside. He was wrong, Yes Thank God they are alive but look at the expense he has put him self in. In other countries he would be charged and possible not be able to do business there again. What it takes just to wait a day or two.. Come on what do you think God Bless wrongsness, you better go back in the Word and learn the difference between being Blessed, Saved by Grace or God Having Mercy on us. Because God can apply all to our lives but the consequences of or acts always remain there for us to pay wheather it is short term or long term..Get real..If you cannot handle small blessings do u think God will give you a big Blessing…Stupesssss…

  28. Tri-State Beauty
    October 15, 2012

    People need to be responsible for their lives. If the weather is bad use your discretion and not get on boat. In any case the authorities should simply ground those boats and planes in these type of weather. Happy that everyone is safe

  29. .
    October 15, 2012

    these men dont obey the weather?

  30. Jo-anne
    October 15, 2012

    I would expect that From some of you that said to charge the captain. We Dominicans we never wait for the whole truth and nothing but the truth, we just start letting out venom from our mouths like rattle snakes. God be with us.

    • Crying
      October 15, 2012

      Like wen u had let go venom on the famous pastor that leaving in Tan Tan? Are u being ignorant cause your inlaw is the captain of Mary Ann?

  31. DA - plp
    October 15, 2012

    when there’s bad weather the boats cannot be on the jetty the boat most be out in the water cause they won’t be banging agaist the port so being out in the water it comes up to the same thing so why not just come down, you people talking like the crew could say no, they are working bad weather come they have to be on the boat incase of anything they was no way for the boat to stay on the port so please understand about boat before alu talk we like to run our mouth when we don’t understand and when we find our self in the shoes of other we does know, (PLZ WISE UP)

    • Excuse me
      October 15, 2012

      The boats should go in the Lagoon. Why other boats goes in the lagoon when there is bad weather..There is no excuse for irrisponsibility..

    • Anonymous
      October 15, 2012

      @DA-plp you wise up. They did not say that the boats were taken out to see because of the bad weather, it stated that they left St Martin for Dominica on Sunday night – big difference.

      While St Martin, BVI and USVI hardly got any thing except rain in some cases, the Captain should have been aware that islands like Saba and St Kitts, Antigua and Guada got a licking. Even the seas in Portsmouth were very roughh

      • Susan
        October 15, 2012

        Its the captains sole responsibility to make wise choices. Go out at sea when there is a prediction of 15/20ft seas with 40 knots of wind is taking unnecessary risks… These boats are seaworthy but can’t stand that kind of force… Most yacht charter companies called their yachts into port here on SXM for the weekend… Surely they do that for a wise reason: Safety of their clients. This is exactly what those 3 captains should have done! Lucky enough 1 was wise enough to return to SXM realizing that it was too much! Now the lost of the other 2 captains is bigger than what they could gained… Very wise decision… It will costs them a lot of money to buy/built new yachts… Wise up?? I think those captains should have been wiser…

  32. Anonymous
    October 15, 2012

    Were the passengers aware in advance that the sea will be rough? If they knew, why did they attempt to travel?

  33. Vic Miller
    October 15, 2012

    Thanks for rewriting the article. The first version sounded like the mayday was for Grace Richie, in trouble, since it was AFTER safely taking aboard all those from Grace Mary Ann. (which would not require a mayday)

    Glad everyone is safe!

    • October 15, 2012

      Exactly!!!! U r right…My husband was on the Grace Ritchie, and when I read the article my heart almost stopped…I have spoken to him and glad he and the other passengers are safe..

  34. mango temptation
    October 15, 2012

    Dominicans can be so negative. An issue like this when we should be thanking God, why negative thoughts are running up people’s mind like captain needs to be arested etc. Before Dominica can move to the next level, we need to change our mentality.

    • Just Saying
      October 15, 2012

      Agree 100%

  35. HONEST
    October 15, 2012

    They should have known better eh papa in that little boat and that weather….it didn’t stand a chance against them rough seas…

  36. commentary
    October 15, 2012

    Seriously!!! where were they going in that weather?

  37. Wander
    October 15, 2012

    Why the captain even had to leave
    Dumb idea on his part doesn’t he even
    Read his radar charge him

  38. sorry
    October 15, 2012

    hey am just happy my partners are a ok. they a sailors like myself and capt that was not a good move on your behalf but am happy you guys a ok see you soon for the fest

  39. October 15, 2012

    Richie is ok in god’s name. a may day was respond from statia. St.martin/St.maarten media didn’t inform no ships suppose to travel because of dangerous water.We know we are going to have alot of rain through the passing of rafeal. it very sad to hear the loss of the boat, but thank god every one is save.

  40. sweet
    October 15, 2012

    omg if i see rough sea like thios where the heck i’m i going? why did these people leave the port didn’t they know that the weather was bad in the first place.

  41. No Name No Warrant
    October 15, 2012

    Were these boats the reenactment of the Nina, Pinta and the Santa Maria.

    Who was the Columbus of that ill advised adventure?

    • Zicack Girl
      October 15, 2012

      I thought of the same.

      Thanks God all are safe.

      • No Name No Warrant
        October 15, 2012

        You know what I mean, how could all three boats decide to brave the bad waves of the tropical storm to come to DA…what was going on that was so important in Dominca…were the Dominican Rivers about to dry up???


  42. ashana van heyningen
    October 15, 2012

    we should thank God that the life of these people are not in danger we should not aress any one nor have any negitive thoughts but praise GOD that all is well

  43. Pondera
    October 15, 2012


  44. Citizen
    October 15, 2012

    I find it is rather strange that we had 2 airplanes crashing now a boat sinking in less than 2 weeks. Not something we are used to here in the Caribbean, so to happen back to back is surprising to me.

  45. star
    October 15, 2012


  46. Satelite
    October 15, 2012

    Four disasters within a week, one in Guadeloupe; fatal plane crash, one in Antigua; fatal plane crash, one in St. Croix/St.Thomas, possible fatal plane crash, and now this sinking of a provision cargo vessel. i strongly believe that persons need to be more respectful of mother nature and its forces. We are only humans, and cannot be replaced, all other properties may be replaced but not lives.

  47. I'm Thinkng
    October 15, 2012

    why are all of our cargo boats sinking? especially the ones that play a big roll to the import of our seasoning ect.
    lord help the boats to go to an frow without harm.
    we must pray…

  48. concerned Dominican
    October 15, 2012

    Why the blame game? Rather, be thankful that all is ok… There’s a time and place for everything… Be wise guys!!!

  49. lucky
    October 15, 2012

    :lol: thank god…

  50. Freddy Gwada
    October 15, 2012

    Always make sure the weather ok before take the sea

  51. BIG-BOY
    October 15, 2012


  52. Pedro
    October 15, 2012

    Kudos to DNO! If there was a media award for reporting in DA, you would win it hands down. You do a great job with your objective and prompt reporting and more positive recognition should be given.

  53. Former sailor
    October 15, 2012

    Man supirise at you doh. But and happy every one is ok. And grace man am chilling in my head. I hope. You. Head back. To port Saba is a good heaven. For rough seas. If you can make it there. Plz. Do quiclky

  54. soucoyan
    October 15, 2012

    I dont know where and dem busy to go under dat rough sea. he der calculating how he late cause dey aready had to be in Dominica so he cyan wait. All my load on d boat. I dont want to hear bef you know cause dey suppose to have insurance. Is not greedy i greedy you know but all souls rescued and for now thats all i care about. Tomorow i on der case dey too greeddy.

  55. da
    October 15, 2012

    che..you sound so Dum…u need to go back to kindergarden

    • October 15, 2012

      Umm, Its not a good idea to call someone dumb then misspell Kindergarten.

    • Woodford hill girl
      October 15, 2012

      you too,the word is dum…B

  56. Konspiracy
    October 14, 2012

    papa met…conspiracy thoughts

  57. Jack-are-we
    October 14, 2012

    Thank you Jah,my brother was on it. The maritime division,or whoever is responsible for inspecting those ships have to get their blame too,not the captain alone. Those boats are hardly inspected for safety before they depart every Monday to SXM.

    • Emilien
      October 15, 2012

      You mean there are boats that can make rough seas calm? I want one we papa!

      • Moe-we-seed
        October 15, 2012

        No dummy,read properly if you can

      October 15, 2012

      if its one thing i know for sure maritime in Dca does it job properly.. while the captains complains saying the maritime unit is bothering them, they are not thinking of their investments(boat & cargo) and future consequences of not having their surveys done.
      however its at the sole discretion of the captain to take the trip knowing there is a tropical storm travelling. putting his life and those of his passengers life at risk….i only takes common sense to make a decision sometimes.

    • ...
      October 15, 2012

      Coast Guards/Maritime Offices etc can only advise but ultimately the decision to sail IS the captains responsibility. It is the Captains duty to inspect and check the ship for sea worthiness and no one elses, the buck always stops with the captain.

  58. Anonymous
    October 14, 2012

    but wait, they not yet safe Grace Richie is still out with its passengers plus those of mary ann, read properly people

  59. moi
    October 14, 2012

    thank god every body safe i like that :-D

    • October 15, 2012

      people are to selfish so u people think the captains.wanted.sinks the boat what u people should be giving thanks for is your Life

  60. no mercy
    October 14, 2012

    That’s good news.thank god everyone is safe and sound

  61. Tryphena
    October 14, 2012

    Great Job on the reporting!
    I do hope they are all ok

  62. Anonymous
    October 14, 2012

    thank god every one is safe…

  63. Che'
    October 14, 2012

    Binjay….these captains need to be arrested to putting people lives in jeopardy

    • Anonymous
      October 14, 2012

      I know right. In this bad weather what are they leaving port for? smh Totally careless, I would charge them for endangering the lives of people. Now the authorities have to risk their lives to save them.

      Would it hurt that much to wait until tomorrow?

      • October 15, 2012

        @Anonymous and Che’

        It is not that the two of you do not have a point, but unless those who boarded either of the boats were children–I am thinking that, as adults, they have a mind of their own to be able to dispute against going out to a sea, which is engulfed by a tropical storm, for the sake of their own lives.

        Most of us, need to overcome that inert mentality; the way we simply sit down and allow one or two people–who claim to be leaders–to think for us. I have learned that in so many instances we have a better idea or plan, to accomplish our goal, than the leaders, in whose hands we leave everything. In the case of this boat, we cannot blame the Captain alone.

        In the meantime I hope that everyone will be safe, whenever they get to their destiny.

    • Justice over peace
      October 15, 2012

      Arrested; The Captain did not force them to go on the ship. They knew the weather was agitates as much as the captains did. The put themselves at their own risk.

      • Tiger
        October 15, 2012

        I can’t believe you people. The people put their trust in the hands of people they expected to know better. Blame the captain, not the passengers.

    • Amazed
      October 15, 2012

      We’re they kidnapped?

    • Juliana Andre'
      October 15, 2012

      I agree with u there. A storm was passing,why didn’t he wait for the storm to pass. His workers lives means nothing to him.

      • Jo-Anne
        October 15, 2012

        why would you say such a thing, know the truth before you talk, it matters not the person’s past at that point when the actual thing took place you were not present, you do not know why they proceeded to sail.In this world there are so many wicked people waiting for a chance to decapitate you based on actions you did in the past. Judge a situation on the present information not the person’s action in the past. As wicked and bad you think someone is in every situation know the whole truth before you talk.

  64. mouth of the south
    October 14, 2012

    good to know all are safe…

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