A BAD CRASH AND A WONDERFUL PATCHING
The schooner G. S. HAZARD arrived on Friday evening in a badly damaged condition. She was towed down by the propeller JAY GOULD, both vessel belonging to the Union steamboat company. Meeting heavy, hard wind on this lake they put in under Rondeau Point early last Tuesday morning. The GOULD ran into the harbor and the HAZARD anchored outside about a mile and a half from the pier. At 12 o'clock on Thursday afternoon, the weather being clear and calm, the GOULD came out to pick up the schooner. She was making directly for her at a speed of four or five miles. When two or three lengths off, Capt. Fletcher of the HAZARD, seeing the propeller coming right ahead, called out for her to reverse her engine, and Capt. Graser cried for someone to run and tell the second engineer, who was on duty, to back up. This would show that the latter captain had already given signals to reverse, but that the engineer did not heed them. It was too late, however, and the GOULD crashed, stem on, into the port side of the HAZARD, striking her between the fore and main masts, abreast of the keel box, the strongest part of the hull. Had the blow fallen anywhere else it is likely she would have been cut through. As it was, about everything on that side was broken, from the rail to the bilge, her deck planks were started and the starboard side opposite was forced outward. The HAZARD at once began leaking badly , and in ten minutes had made eight inches of water. She had on 55,000 bushels of wheat, worth over $60,000, and Capt. Fletcher realized that something must be done quickly to help her from sinking, the water being 30 feet deep. He had canvas drawn tightly under the bottom, and then, being lowered by ropes into the water, he worked like a beaver with boards, nails, oakum and tallow to close up the leaks for full two hours and twenty minutes. So well did he succeed that when under way the vessel made only about an inch per hour. She discharged 54,184 bushels dry wheat at the elevator, thus wetting only 516 bushels. The Hazard is uninsured, but the grain was fully covered. Capt. Fletcher's bold, prompt and wise action was the means of saving both vessel and cargo. The damages to the HAZARD amount to $4,000 or $5,000, and she will probably retire for the season. The Gould sustained little injury. - [Buffalo Courier.
Detroit Post and Tribune
Tuesday, October 3, 1882