The manager of a luxury Dubai party yacht that crashed onto the rocks in high winds near the Palm Jumeirah says repairs will run into millions of dirhams.
The crew of super-yacht Jasmin managed to evacuate their 95 guests just before the vessel, thought to be worth up to Dhs20 million, was marooned.
Vikas Goel, who helps to manage Jasmin for Epic Luxury Yachts LLC, described the weather overnight on Thursday as “unpredictable”. The accident happened just before 4am on Friday.
“It was a freak storm,” he said. “Winds picked up suddenly from 10 knots to 40 knots with swirls. The entrance of Dubai Marina is narrow and the wind pushed the boat onto the rocks.”
Goel said no one was hurt on board the boat, which can host 160 people. “The passengers were dropped off safely on the berth next to Skydive Dubai,” he told 7DAYS.
“The entry to the Marina is very tight with two 90-degree turns, so the unexpected wind made it difficult and the boat was pushed to the rocks,” Goel said. He added that the captain did not want to risk sailing into the Marina with passengers on board, so dropped them off first.
Goel said that when the boat hit the rocks, only staff and crew remained on board. “At no point was any passenger in danger. It’s a big strong boat. Even after two days it’s not gone under the water, so it’s a safe boat. It’s just marooned,” he said.
The Jasmin is 38m long, and had sailed 2,000km from the Gulf of Mexico to Miami before coming to Dubai. “It is made in the US with US coastguard standards and safety equipment. The US government would never approve it if it lacked safety. It was just the unpredictable weather,” Goel said. “The captain is very experienced and professional. He took a very smart decision to alight the passengers.”
Goel confirmed the owners planned to remove the boat from the rocks in the next two days. “When the weather is better, a large crane will lift it and we will take it for repair,” he said.
The owners hope to have the Jasmin repaired within two to three months.