Rescue operation for solo yachtsman continues near Tasmania

Friday 18 January 2013
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority is coordinating a rescue operation for a solo yachtsman south west of Tasmania.
Media Release

The solo sailor’s yacht was de-masted and has suffered some hull damage in rough weather conditions during his round the world journey.

AMSA’s Essendon-based Dornier arrived on scene this evening and confirmed the sailor had abandoned his yacht and was in a life raft. The Dornier crew dropped a second life raft and communications equipment to the sailor.

Another aircraft is due on scene tonight and will attempt to maintain communications with the sailor, as well as attempt to raise communications with nearby fishing vessels which may be able to assist.

An associate of the sailor contacted AMSA early this morning after the yacht had been de-masted. After making contact with the sailor, who did not declare he was in distress at the time, AMSA advised him to head towards Hobart.

At approximately 1:00pm AEDT this afternoon, AMSA detected an emergency beacon activation from the yacht 500 nautical miles south west of Hobart.

A cruise ship, Orion, has started making its way towards the yacht’s position and is due to arrive in a few days.

Aircraft will remain in the area until a vessel is able to assist. The yacht’s location is too remote for helicopters to attend.

AMSA believes the sailor has been at sea for several months.

Further updates will be provided when more information is available.