Australian Navy Rescues Two French Yachtsmen

The Royal Australian Navy rescued two French yachtsmen last night whose yacht had sunk 360 miles east of Jervis Bay. The yachtsmen were winched from a small boat by a Navy Seahawk helicopter after they abandoned their yacht when it sunk in rough conditions earlier.

The sailors were returned to the Navy frigate HMAS Perth where they remained overnight before being landed ashore in Jervis Bay. The sailors are in a satisfactory condition after suffering mild hyperthermia.

 “The recovery of these two sailors has gone very smoothly. The Rescue Coordination Centre did a great job managing a number of assets including ourselves, fixed wing aircraft and the merchant vessel Williams Strait. The final piece of the rescue saw the Seahawk helicopter use its night vision capability to ensure a successful outcome,” said the Commanding Officer of HMAS Perth, Captain Lee Goddard.

The Seahawk helicopter is based at 816 Squadron at HMAS Albatross in Nowra, New South Wales whilst HMAS Perth is normally based at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia. Both 816 Squadron and HMAS Perth are participating in a number of maritime exercises occurring in and around Jervis Bay and the East Australian Exercise Area prior to their involvement in the International Fleet Review in Sydney from 4 – 10 October 2013.

Press Release, September 30, 2013