A man and a woman have been dramatically rescued from a yacht in distress amid gale-force winds and six-metre swells this morning off the NSW coast. [ Video ]
A NSW Police rescue boat reached the 40-foot yacht, in trouble because of a broken rudder, about 210 nautical miles north east of Sydney at 8.30am with the help of a nearby container ship.
The man and woman were reportedly unharmed, NSW Police said.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority was told the yacht, crewed by an Irish and French national, ran into trouble on March 4 during its journey from New Zealand to Australia.
"About 3pm yesterday the yacht, affected by high winds and heavy swell, activated its emergency position-indicating radio beacon," NSW Police said in a statement.
Rescue 660, one of the maritime authority’s dedicated search and rescue Challenger 604 jets, dropped additional communications equipment to the yacht but the equipment couldn’t be recovered due to the treacherous conditions.
The jet stayed nearby to relay communications from the yacht to the maritime authority, which then issued a broadcast to shipping in the area asking for assistance.
Container ship ANL Elanora answered the call, and went to its aid, along with the NSW Police rescue vessel Nemesis vessel with seven officers from the Marine Area Command.
"In six-metre swells and gale-force southerly winds, the Nemesis reached the yacht at 8.30am this morning," NSW Police said.
"Both the man and the woman were successfully transferred to the Nemesis with the assistance of the ANL Elanora and are reported to be uninjured.
"The Nemesis is now returning to Sydney and is expected to arrive at 8.30pm tonight."
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Source : The West Australian