July 16, 2021

Flybridge Cruiser on Fire Near Elba Island

A fourteen meter Raffaelli motor cruiser with three guests onboard went on fire some nine miles from Isola Elba and nineteen miles from Pianosa island on the morning of Friday 16 July at around 0700 hours.  As reported the Raffaelli flybridge cruiser which had departed from Scarlino yacht harbor in the early hours of the morning, had the fire start out from the engine room.  A VHF call was made to the coast guard, with the Porto Ferrario, Isola Elba section responding immediately to the call and saving the three passengers, who in the mean time led themselves to safety onboard the tender. A fire fighting squad was deployed to save the Raffaelli flybridge cruiser, unfortunately with no success, which dominated by the fire ended in sinking.  
The flybridge motor cruiser in the fire is a Raffaelli Storm S,  a 14.50 meter flybridge cruiser presented in 1990 and produced till 1996.  The Storm S was an evolution of the Storm model launched in 1986, adding fifty centimetres in length and with this expanding the main cabin for more space in the saloon and aft deck, and now featuring a sloop stern.  The Storm S was a popular flybridge cruiser for the most part in the Italian market and a discreet success also coming in France, thanks to its three cabins layout and its seakeeping qualities, this being a Raffaelli trade mark.  The Raffaelli Storm S was powered with Cat engines; 380hp at first and newer units having the 440hp engines.  Top speed was 28 with the lower powered engines and 31 with the 440 units.  The Storm and Storm S sold over sixty units in a ten year production run, and are still popular used boats and a common sight in most Italian marinas.  Raffaelli has always been famous for producing honest boats with seakeeping and strong construction qualities, and till the entering of the CE rules in 1998 built its boats to A1 Class Nippon design standards, something rare in sub 24 meter plus yachts in that time. 

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