Boaters like to think that nothing bad will ever happen to them at sea. But they also like to think that if something does happen, their boat will be strong enough to survive it. And while many boat companies boast that their boats can handle whatever conditions they might face, Regulator Marine can back it up with one of the most amazing boating survival tales in recent memory.
In August 2008, Scott Douglas was fishing in his Regulator 26 center console – the Queen Bee – with his brother-in-law, Rich St. Pierre. Suddenly, the two men looked up to see a rogue wave towering 5 feet over their bimini top. It tossed the two men overboard, forcing them to swim to shore while they watched the Queen Bee, still under power, being pulled out to sea. While happy they were safe, the men thought it was the last time they’d see the Queen Bee.
Fast forward nearly three and a half years to early 2012, when Douglas was astonished to receive a call telling him his Queen Bee had been discovered across the Atlantic Ocean just off the north of Spain, still intact. After traveling roughly 3,500 miles across the ocean, the boat had a little rust, had mussels attached to it and had a slightly banged-up T-top frame. Other than that, it was still in great shape. Its two engines were intact. Its hull was still seaworthy. Even the first-aid kit, nautical maps and fire extinguishers were all still in place.
The saga of the Queen Beereceived national attention. And rightfully so. Douglas was amazed his boat had survived. So were the people who had built it. Architects with Regulator say they design their boats so they can withstand a lot. But a three-and-a-half year ocean crossing? Enduring hurricanes and the notoriously brutal storms of the North Atlantic? No one who builds a 26-foot center console has that in mind during construction.
But somehow the Queen Bee survived. It stayed afloat because the main structural components of the vessel – the hull, the liner and the console – had all stayed intact. Some experts credit Regulator’s innovative fiberglass grillage system for holding the vessel together. A lesser boat likely wouldn’t have survived.
And its owner wouldn’t have nearly as cool of a tale to tell.