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  • Captain Steve

Zut, Alor!

The French, as they always do, are on strike. It started on December 5 with the Paris Metro workers over proposed pension reform. It has now spread throughout France and includes port operations. Yesterday, I was notified that the Port of La Rochelle would be closed for an indeterminate time and that the scheduling of a replacement ship, which could take weeks or months, could not happen until the strike was over. The alternative was to have the boat sailed to England immediately and have the same ship scheduled pick the boat up there. There is at least one other Fountaine Pajot in an identical position.


The logistics of all this is mind boggling. Fountaine Pajot is in France, my dealer, who is working this, is in Annapolis, my insurance agent is in San Diego and our insurance company is in England. They want to know the background of the delivery crew to approve coverage. Think of the logistics given 48 hours to get everything done. I got an email yesterday morning from the dealer outlining the problem. After a brief call to confirm we wanted to proceed with the sailing delivery, I talked to my insurance agent. She reached the insurance company (8 hour time delay) just before they closed and were told of the need for crew resume. I got back to the dealer who got to the French just before they left for the day. It looks like we got the information very early this morning (noon French time). When our agent gets in this morning she will need to reach out to London insurance before they leave for the day.


Compounding the problem is the weather. Today, along the route, winds are 40-50 knots with twenty foot seas. Wednesday, the scheduled departure, winds and sea are expected to die down but only for about 36 hours. If they head out early tomorrow they should be in the English Channel before the next front hits providing some protection. They cannot delay departure both because of the weather and the availability of the ship. As soon as they reach Portsmouth they will be loaded on the ship for Fort Lauderdale. Very nervous.

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