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Which Boat Sank On The Deadliest Catch? There's Actually Been More Than One

"Deadliest Catch" is a series that tragically lives up to its name. Commercial fishing is a perilous industry, with a fatality rate 40 times higher than the national average. That said, most tragedies that befall "Deadliest Catch" cast members aren't explicitly related to fishing, with drug overdoses and, in the case of Captain Phil Harris, a stroke claiming crew members' lives.

A pall of potential disaster hangs over "Deadliest Catch," and the series has twice captured instances of fishing vessels sinking in the Bering Sea. In one 2017 episode, the series documented the tragic sinking of the S/V Destination near St. George Island, Alaska, in which all six crew members aboard perished: Captain Jeff Hathaway, Darri Seibold, Kai Hamik, Larry O'Grady, Raymond Vincler, and Charles G. Jones.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, the ship was weighed down by icy sea spray, making it "disastrously top-heavy" as it succumbed to ice build-up. A Coast Guard analysis later determined that the Destination didn't meet the proper stability standards.

In 2020, disaster struck again when another ship — the Scandies Rose — sank on "Deadliest Catch." Two crew members were recovered, while the other five didn't survive the ordeal. Like the Destination, ice accumulation was partly the culprit.

The tragedies are a reminder of the high stakes on Deadliest Catch

The Destination and Scandies Rose tragedies were featured on "Deadliest Catch," but they're not the only wrecks to have happened in the Bering Sea. In 2005, the S/V Big Valley capsized and sunk, killing five of the six-man crew. Other lost vessels include the Vestfjord in 1989, the Aleutian Enterprise in 1990, the Arctic Rose in 2001, the Alaska Ranger in 2008, and the Katmai that same year, to speak nothing of unreported accidents.

The incidents televised on "Deadliest Catch" capture the crew members' own anxieties about their profession. The S/V Destination disaster was especially poignant for longtime "Deadliest Catch" star Sig Hansen, who was good friends with the Destination's Captain Jeff Hathaway. In addition to grieving his friend, Hansen was then in the unenviable position of informing his own crew, many of whom also had friends on the Destination.

"You know, when I think about the Destination, to me, it wasn't just another boat," said Hansen. "These guys were our friends. We know all of them. It makes you think: If it could happen to them, can it happen to me?" (via Yahoo)

In the Season 13 episode, one crew member tearfully made the case for retiring from fishing entirely: "Cause of s— like this, this is why I don't like coming out here anymore."