Outdoors Magazine

A Very Lucky Sailboat Rescue

By Sailingguide

A Very Lucky Sailboat Rescue

Even with the typical lack of detail present in so many newspaper stories about sailboat rescues, yesterday's report from Vancouver about the rescue of three sailors sailing from Hawaii to Vancouver suggests a very lucky situation for a disabled and apparently unprepared sailboat. The sailboat had a damaged mast and was taking on water and apparently also limited, and damaged, communication equipment. No one was looking for them, so they must not have had an EPIRB aboard to call for help, or an SSB or satphone for long-range communication. Luckily they were spotted some 50 miles offshore by a passing plane. With gale-force winds predicted and seas rising, the Victoria Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre determined they were at great risk and dispatched a Canadian lifeboat to tow the stricken boat to safety. Conditions then were so dangerous that they couldn't even attempt to transfer the sailors from their boat to the lifeboat. One can only imagine how well a crippled boat may have held up during that storm.

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