Cruise Ship Rescues Man In Raft; Watch French Sailor Alain Delord’s Dramatic Rescue

By iScienceTimes Staff on January 22, 2013 2:37 PM EST

Cruise ship rescues man in raft
Alain Delord was rescued after his yacht sunk over the weekend. (Photo: YouTube)

A cruise ship rescued a man in a raft near the southern Australian coast on Tuesday, pulling Alain Delord aboard the MV Orion after he had spent three days adrift on a life raft after his yacht sank in rough seas. The cruise ship rescued the man in the raft after getting word from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority that Delord's yacht had gone down. The cruise ship rescued the man in the raft after the MV Orion spent 53 hours traveling to Delord's last known location, provided by the AMSCA Rescue Coordination Centre. The Rescue Coordination of the AMSA had planes locate Delord, but the cruise ship was the nearest vessel capable of rescuing the man in the raft. Captain Mike Taylor of the MV Orion told ABC News about how the cruise ship rescued the man in the raft.

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"We were about 680 miles south of his position and actually on our way to Macquarie Island, when the Rescue Coordination Centre in Canberra called us," he said.

Captain Taylor said that visibility was a major factor, and it took a coordinated effort of helicopters and flares for the cruise ship to rescue the man in the raft.

"They dropped smoke and light floats into the vicinity and actually guided us right into him," Mike Taylor told ABC. "And we couldn't see the light floats until we were about three quarters of a mile away, and we didn't see the raft until a half a mile. Without their help and in the conditions, there was no way we were going to find him."

Delord, a French citizen, had been sailing since October and was attempting to sail around the world via the Vendee Globe round-the-world ocean race. There were 100 passengers aboard the cruise ship that rescued the man in the raft, and while they initially expressed disappointment their Antarctic cruise would be cut short, many were on deck cheering as Delord was hauled aboard. Here's a video of the rescue shot by one of the passengers and uploaded to YouTube.

The cruise ship rescued the man in the raft after he spent three days adrift with minimal supplies. Medical reports from the ship say he is recovering nicely, and one of his first actions on board was to enjoy a glass of red wine and toast the crew for rescuing him. Catering manager Ian Vella noted that Delord checked out to be fine and he had a great attitude.

"He is very tired and being attended to by the ship's doctor. He is very hungry so he is going to have something to eat and a glass of red wine for his dinner," Vella told the Daily Mail.

Fortunately for Delord, the cruise ship rescued him in his raft because authorities knew he encountered problems and was stranded at sea. The same luck did not come to two fishermen rescued days before Christmas who were stranded for three weeks on the ocean. Everton Gregory and John Sobah, set sail on Nov. 20 from the southeastern coast of Jamaica to catch fish for their employer, the non-profit charity Food For The Poor. They only had provisions for three days but managed to survive for three weeks.

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