The owner of a luxury catamaran took the Sunshine Coast builders to court over damaged paintwork.
The owner of a luxury catamaran took the Sunshine Coast builders to court over damaged paintwork. Contributed

Sailor lands $126,000 from blistering paint dispute

DODGY paintwork on a boat has put $126,000 into the pockets of a south-east Queensland sailor.

Suncoast Marine owners Michael John Rider and Kate Rider sold a $2.4m luxury catamaran to Trevor Keith Pix in 2007, a court heard during a civil trial over the damage.

Months after taking ownership of the boat - named Jalun - Mr Pix noticed two large bubbles as well as extensive blistering in the boat's paintwork, the court was told.

Mr Pix sent a letter to Mr Rider regarding "faulty workmanship", but Mr Rider responded that the Jalun's warranty only covered structural integrity.

Mr Pix took the Riders to court over the damage.

Mr Rider claimed the blisters were visible during the sale process and that he had spoken to Mr Pix about them.

Another boat builder gave evidence at the civil trial that Mr Rider told him he had used unskilled labour in fairing and painting the boat and air voids may have caused the blistering. 

Chief Justice Catherine Holmes found - on the balance of probabilities - that the blistering occurred due to "inadequate preparation of the surfaces between layers and inexpert mixing of the fairing compound". 

"Those defects did not present any actual danger or even render the boat unusable," she said.

Chief Justice Holmes ordered the Riders to pay $126,000 to Mr Pix as compensation for being deprived of the use of the boat while it was under repair. 

The couple appealed the decision, asking the Queensland Court of Appeal to reduce this cost to $50,000.

They said the amount of compensation should have been based on the boat's annual depreciation of 10 per cent.

The court of appeal delivered its ruling this week, saying Justice Holmes's decision was correct and that the damages would stand.

The Riders were also ordered to pay Mr Pix court costs in relation to the appeal.  - NewsRegional

News Corp Australia


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