Sailors Rescued in Round-the-World Yacht Race

Boat limping to SF after Pacific wave injures crew members
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2012 12:01 AM CDT
Updated Apr 2, 2012 1:40 AM CDT
Sailors Rescued in Round-the-World Yacht Race
Air National Guard parajumpers prepare medical supplies to be dropped from a Coast Guard aircraft to a 67-foot sailing yacht with injured sailors aboard.   (AP Photo/Seaman David Flores, U.S. Coast Guard)

Two injured sailors have been rescued after a "monstrous foaming swell" washed over an Australian boat participating in a 10-team round-the-world yacht race. Two others in the 18-person crew also seriously hurt were still on board yesterday off the coast of California. The Geraldton Western Australia is expected to dock in San Francisco within the day, reports the BBC. One of those rescued by a Coast Guard cutter was the boat's medic, 50, who suffered broken ribs when the mammoth wave hit. Earlier, a transport aircraft dropped medical supplies and oxygen to aid the injured sailors—three Britons and an Australian.

A Coast Guard spokesman refused to go into further details, but added: "The amount of effort that we're putting in is commensurate with serious injuries." The wave also washed away the boat's steering wheel and some communication equipment. The Clipper Round-the-World Yacht Race is a 40,000-mile contest that started in Southhampton last July, and is expected to end there this July. The Geraldton Western Australia is currently in last place. (More Clipper Round the World Yacht Race stories.)

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