Running water in the float of a catamaran

THE CONTEXT

The water appeared in the port-side float of a catamaran while sailing from Corsica to the French mainland, with winds measuring force 6 on the Beaufort scale and 2- to 3-metre-high waves.

The owner of the boat quickly realised that the leak was coming from a non-return valve on the toilet flushing line, and was able to seal the leak, preventing the worst.

The policyholder had built the catamaran about a year previously. It was still guaranteed against construction defects.

GM CONSULTANT INTERVENTION

For this case, the GM Consultant loss adjuster verified that the equipment installed was compliant with the original plans. Upon reading the part list sent to us, he discovered that a specific type of non-return valve should have been installed (anti-siphon elbow).
The installed part was not the part listed. It was simpler and not as strong (Plastimo tip with non-return valve).

A section of this part was not suitable for withstanding choppy seas. It had lasted until the incident, but was not able to stand up to the weather conditions described above.

The equipment installed was therefore determined to be non-compliant.