Editor’s note: this announcement is from Boatwatch.org, a website run by Glenn and Eddie Tuttle and associated with the Seven Seas Cruising Association, which is designed to aid mariners that are missing or overdue; have a boat stolen; or to whom urgent messages need to be relayed.
Boatwatch.org received a great idea from a cruiser which we have just implemented on our website. Check out the new page called “Flotsam and Jetsam” at boatwatch.org/reporting-flotsam-jetsam/.
The intent for this page is to report things lost or found at sea that could help find the owner, and/or assist Coast Guard agencies, friends and families, and possibly aid with missing or overdue boating or aircraft incidents.
Debris from a possible sinking boat or airplane can provide very important clues. No matter how small or insignificant you may think it is, it could be the missing clue or a vital piece of evidence. Take a look at the page and keep your eyes open for these objects at sea. Photographs are very important as well as descriptions of barnacles or algae. Boatwatch.org will make sure the information gets to the proper authorities.
In maritime lingo, “flotsam” is wreckage or cargo that remains afloat after a ship has sunk, and “jetsam” is cargo or equipment thrown overboard from a ship in distress. The precise meanings are lost in the common phrase “flotsam and jetsam,” which describes useless or discarded objects. The phrase is sometimes used to describe items floating or washed ashore, but it has also been extended into metaphorical use for any accumulation of odds and ends.
In addition to using the form to report your current flotsam and jetsam finds, please send us your stories or news articles about finding flotsam and jetsam or losing things at sea by emailing us at one of our email addresses listed on the page. We have posted our story of finding flotsam and jetsam as well as a news story on airplane debris found in the Philippines on the website.