‘Below Deck Med’ Executive Producer Says Captain Sandy’s Hands Were Tied When It Came to Firing Hannah Ferrier
Below Deck Mediterranean producers and crew were criticized with how chief stew Hannah Ferrier was fired. But executive producer Nadine Rajabi shared that Captain Sandy Yawn’s hands were tied. She had no choice but to dismiss Ferrier.
Bosun Malia White snapped a photo of Ferrier’s undocumented prescription valium and shared the image with Yawn. Yawn called Ferrier into her office and ultimately fired Ferrier. Fans blasted the series, citing that other crew members had taken medication. Kat Held from Below Deck season 1 also didn’t document her anti-anxiety medication.
However, Rajabi says the situation was unique because cameras captured conversations about the undocumented medication. She describes the Wellington as being a well-wired vessel, designed to track nearly all activity on board. This includes cameras that were not installed by production. Rajabi said that a non-production camera on the boat was installed on the ceiling of the bridge. This camera picked up every conversation, putting Yawn in a no-win situation.
Everything is documented on the boat
“[The camera] records everything,” she described on the Reality Life with Kate Casey podcast. “It almost serves as a black box of the boat and that records everything. So when there’s information like this on there, it’s kind of like your hands are tied. Because it’s recorded.”
“So what I know and from what we documented is in conversations is if Sandy is given this information and there were a couple of people that were copied on this, that had nothing to do with production, from what I’ve heard, her hands are tied,” she continued.
Production could not intervene
“There are a lot of conversations about it in the bridge and that whole boat they recorded it in the bridge,” Rajabi said. “I don’t know if there’s other cameras. There’s one on the aft deck. But I do know that the boat is completely wired and information goes back to the management company.” Adding the boat was designed to pick up any information that can be used especially for insurance purposes.
Legal ramifications also prevented production from intervening. “It was beyond the network’s control because of maritime law,” she said. “I think with another series I think there’s a bigger discussion with the network, like one of the Housewives isn’t going to come back or a realtor isn’t going to come back. On something like this, if somebody’s let go from the vessel, that’s it. There’s nothing the network can do to control this. It’s very black and white.”
Rajabi also addressed cabin checks on the boat. Unannounced cabin checks are routine in the business. The bosun or chief stew usually conducts the checks. “There’s cabin checks on this boat and a lot of boats have cabin checks,” Rajabi noted. “Basically they can go through anything at any point.”
Captain Sandy regrets how Hannah Ferrier departed the boat
“Sandy has spoken to me and has said that’s not how she wanted Hannah to go either,” Rajabi said. “I think they both would have been happy if they could have just finished off the season.”
“Because Sandy likes Hannah,” Rajabi continued. “Like wishes her the best. And I think Hannah as well likes Sandy. I think right now the relationship is very severed because of everything.”
“It was tough because I think Sandy really wanted to … I think it was like that final goodbye,” Rajabi said. “But I think that Sandy felt really bad about everything. But as an observer, I think she felt bad.”