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Featured Stories on Boating and Boater Safety

Building boats and shaping lives

PWBF students work in teams, with a daily list of tasks to complete on each boat.Frankford, in the northeast part of Philadelphia, seems an unlikely place to find passionate boatbuilders. Founded by Quakers in 1682, this gritty former manufacturing area on the outskirts of the city now wears a necklace of used-car dealerships, empty factories and low expectations.

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The Factory One Design

Enjoying a sail aboard Purple Lady, the first Factory One Design built by PWBF students.When the Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory needed a small-boat design to better suit the needs of its students, the staff knew exactly who to turn to: noted small-boat designer Antonio Dias, who’s penned the beauties Harrier, Truth, Small and Tautog, among others.

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Deadly ‘White Hurricane,’ 100 years later

“The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” vaulted to No. 2 on the Billboard pop charts in 1976, scoring a blockbuster hit for Canadian songwriter Gordon Lightfoot. He’d written the ballad as a tribute to the 29 merchant mariners who died when the bulk carrier Edmund Fitzgerald sank Nov. 10, 1975, in a fierce gale on Lake Superior.

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Anatomy of the storm on the Great Lakes Nov. 1913

All 22 hands aboard the L.C. Waldo, grounded on Gull Rock in Lake Superior, were rescued (note the ice in the rigging).On Friday, Nov. 7, 1913, a blast of frigid Arctic air, accompanied by low barometric pressure, swept into the Great Lakes from Canada. At the same time a weak low-pressure system was tracking eastward from the southeastern United States, setting the stage for the tragic events to come.

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The impact of the Kandi Won tragedy one year later

The district attorney's report cites flaws in the design of the 1984 Silverton 34. Water-filled barrels simulated passenger weight forward.More than a year after three children drowned when Kandi Won, a 34-foot Silverton, capsized in Oyster Bay, L.I., N.Y., the tragedy continues to roil the boating community.  The July 4, 2012, accident received national attention, spurring action by legislators and boating safety groups.

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