Author Topic: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman  (Read 274 times)

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Offline Twynkle

QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« on: Jun 10, 2017, 03:33 PM »
RMS Queen Mary en route to assist with yacht in difficulties in mid-Atlantic.
Two crew members aboard a sailing boat that encountered hurricane-force winds during a transatlantic race on Friday have been rescued, while crew on another vessel continue to await help and a third sailboat off Newfoundland has put out a new emergency call.

A fourth sailboat that was previously in distress has managed to recover and continue on its way, said a spokesman for the Royal Canadian Navy.

The sailboats were part of the Royal Western Yacht Club's Original Single-Handed Transatlantic Race and the Two-Handed Transatlantic Race, but they ran into stormy weather just after midnight on Friday about 1,600 kilometres off Newfoundland.

Strong winds and high seas broke the mast of one boat and damaged the hulls and rigging of two others.

Navy Lt. Len Hickey said a nearby merchant vessel rescued two people on one of the boats, while the cruise ship Queen Mary 2 is on its way to try to rescue crew from another sailboat. The U.K. cruise liner is expected to be on the scene late Saturday morning.....
Read on:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/sailors-rescued-mid-atlantic-vessel-distress-sailboat-race-newfoundland-1.4155026

(PS - Photos from QM2 of of high seas have been posted by passengers on the internet in past couple of days)
« Last Edit: Jun 10, 2017, 03:37 PM by Twynkle »


QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for nearly 9 whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #1 on: Jun 11, 2017, 01:23 PM »
Thanks,

Lots of news about it today - https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/11/mervyn-wheatley-73-queen-mary-2-liner-rescue-north-atlantic-storm

I would love to see photos from on board of this event, including the sailor enjoying the luxury of Queen Mary 2 once stepping aboard!  Can you imagine the contrast of stepping from a tiny boat in the stormy Atlantic, to a warm luxury stable and HUGE ship?
Passionate about QE2 for over 30 years.

Online Andy Holloway

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #2 on: Jun 11, 2017, 01:46 PM »
Thanks,

Lots of news about it today - https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/11/mervyn-wheatley-73-queen-mary-2-liner-rescue-north-atlantic-storm

I would love to see photos from on board of this event, including the sailor enjoying the luxury of Queen Mary 2 once stepping aboard!  Can you imagine the contrast of stepping from a tiny boat in the stormy Atlantic, to a warm luxury stable and HUGE ship?

I know Mervyn Wheatley as he was an former Royal Marines Officer, who was taking part in the OSTAR 2017 race and, at the same time, helping to raise monies for The Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund through sponsorship. 
It's also incidental that the QM2 Captain, Chris Wells, is a former Royal Naval Reserve Officer, i'm sure they had a few stories to swap in the days left to Boston.

By the way, just to reiterate that Mervyn is 73 years old, not a bad 'late life experience' sailing the Atlantic single handed!

Offline Twynkle

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #3 on: Jun 11, 2017, 11:20 PM »
This sounds as if he could have very mixed feelings...
Hopefully it'll not be too long before he's back at sea in a small sail-boat,
hopefully with good friends to share the experience of being safe and well...
I wonder whether Cunard will allow him his passage home..
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/06/11/british-sailor-made-traumatic-decision-sink-boat-rescued-cunard/
QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for nearly 9 whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline Rod

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #4 on: Jun 11, 2017, 11:57 PM »
RMS ???

Offline Twynkle

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #5 on: Jun 12, 2017, 01:37 PM »
I could get used to this, admits sailor Mervyn Wheatley rescued by cruise liner Queen Mary 2
Ben Webster, Oceans Correspondent

June 12 2017, 12:01am, The Times
Mervyn Wheatley, centre, is no longer “snooty” about cruises after being rescued from a storm by the QM2
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As a solo transatlantic yachtsman, Mervyn Wheatley is not used to luxuries while afloat and admits that he was previously a “bit snooty” about cruising.

Last night he dined in a borrowed dinner jacket at the captain’s table on the Queen Mary 2 after Cunard’s flagship altered course to rescue him from his stricken yacht in the mid- Atlantic following a violent storm.

The 73-year-old former Royal Marine had sailed across the Atlantic 19 times before, eight of those single-handed, but had never been on a cruise. “I may be a little less snooty about cruise ships now,” said Mr Wheatley, speaking to The Times from the QM2, on which he has been given a Princess Grill stateroom with private balcony, a king-size bed and nine options of pillow.
The Tamarind was knocked to its side in 80mph winds and 30ft waves

His yacht was one of several badly damaged while taking part in a race for solo or two-person crews from Plymouth to Newport, Rhode Island, in the US.

His 36-hour ordeal began in the early hours of Friday when his yacht was knocked on to its side in 80mph winds and 30ft waves. The mast of the Tamarind went underwater and a window smashed, causing water to pour into the cabin.

Mr Wheatley ....lost all power and spent several hours pumping out the water by hand. He plugged the window with cushions but water kept seeping in with each wave and the pump became blocked. The wind vane used for self-steering also broke and a steering cable snapped.

Mr Wheatley, who has sailed more than 260,000 miles and was a skipper on the first Clipper round-the-world race, still believed he could rescue himself, including by using a length of garden hose to siphon out water.

However, his emergency beacon had been automatically activated and the Canadian coastguard began to co-ordinate a rescue from a C-130 Hercules aircraft. Mr Wheatley said he considered trying to sail 1,500 miles back to England but he would have had no means of communication.

“That would have put a lot of strain on my family. I also realised things were getting pretty marginal,” he said. He decided to accept the offer of a rescue and to scuttle his beloved yacht to prevent it becoming a hazard to shipping.

A cargo ship initially diverted to his aid but he said the captain had no viable plan to get him on board. “I thought he was going to lower a rope but I couldn’t have climbed it when I was 26 in those huge seas, let alone aged 73.”

The Hercules crew told him by radio that the QM2 was fairly near and he joked with them that, if he had a choice, he wanted to be rescued by the liner. The QM2 lowered a rescue boat with a crew of three and he jumped across when its bow came up to his cockpit.

Cruise passengers greeted him with a round of applause after he and the boat were hoisted up to the tenth deck.

“I deliberately didn’t acknowledge it because I didn’t deserve it. The people who deserved it were the boat crew,” he said. He said the QM2 had a very well-drilled rescue plan, in “stark contrast” to the cargo ship.

The crew of two other yachts in the race were rescued by an ocean-going tug and a survey vessel. “I think I did incomparably better being rescued by the QM2, certainly as far as the aftercare is concerned. I have been treated like a prince,” he said.

He will dock with the ship in Halifax, Nova Scotia, tomorrow and then fly back to the UK and his wife, Penny.

He escaped with only some “impressive bruises” and plans to buy another yacht and set sail again soon. “While I was pumping out, I thought, ‘That’s it, I’m not doing this again’. But I don’t want to leave it like that.”
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Thank you to the Times - they generously write 'share' - this edited version was from my personal account!
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/i-could-get-used-to-this-admits-sailor-mervyn-wheatley-rescued-by-cruise-liner-queen-mary-2-6cvhvgxtw
QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for nearly 9 whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline Twynkle

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #6 on: Jun 19, 2017, 01:11 PM »
...and here is an excellent account by Rich Wagner on his website
http://www.beyondships2.com/queen-mary-2-rescue-at-sea.html
QE2 has been waiting alongside in Dubai for nearly 9 whole years... she seriously needs to be earning her keep....

Offline QE2forever

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Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #7 on: Jun 19, 2017, 04:10 PM »
Well done QM2, Captain Wells and everyone involved!

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #8 on: Jun 20, 2017, 11:16 AM »
Good account of the rescue.  Well done to the brave Officer and crew of the rescue boat. 
I am proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online June Ingram

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Re: QM2 rescues lone transatlatic yachtsman
« Reply #9 on: Jun 20, 2017, 02:34 PM »
Yes, great account ! and well done to all involved in the rescue !
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

 

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