sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Dangerous rescue brings more awards for three
Dangerous rescue brings more awards for three

'Lowe Corporation Rescue helicopter had just 20 minutes of fuel left when it landed after the rescue'    .

As cruising sailors it is all too easy to take for granted that the rescue authorities will be there when we need them but the harrowing stories of dangerous rescues are just what we need to be humbled by their contribution. A civilian medal has been awarded to three men at the core of a daring and dangerous rescue in New Zealand.

The three, senior winchman Geoff Taylor, St John Ambulance advanced paramedic Stephen Smith and pilot Dean Herrick, who were awarded the Royal Humane Society's Silver Medal, had already been presented with the New Zealand Search and Rescue Council's top honour for bravery - the Gold Award. Read their story:


Modest heroes: Senior winchman Geoff Taylor, St John Ambulance advanced paramedic Stephen Smith and pilot Dean Herrick -  .. .  
The call-out on October 11 was one Mr Smith said he would never forget, and the most challenging he had been involved in.

Wellington yachtie George Horgan, 63, called for help after the sails of his nine-metre yacht were blown out and the engine had failed - about 50 nautical miles out from the cape.

'The yacht was thrashing about in rough seas,' Mr Smith told local publication Hawke's Bay Today. He was winched down into 5m swells and 35-knot winds to rescue Mr Horgan, but the conditions and the sailor's reluctance to leave the yacht to get into a better position to be rescued, away from the swaying mast, made it treacherous.

The award citation stated:

Mr Smith had been lowered into the water and reached the boat, but getting the yachtsman into the desired position away from his boat proved to be extremely difficult. He was finally able to get the yachtsman into the harness.

Complications which followed resulted in the winch line with Mr Smith and the yachtsman attached to it becoming entangled with a rope linking a life raft to the boat. It took great skill on the part of all three crew members to free the winch line.

Mr Smith, in the water, was being repeatedly battered by the sea and against the yacht. Meanwhile, to compound their problems, the yachtsman endeavoured to climb back onto the boat, became entangled, and fell out of the harness into the water. He could not be seen. The crew believed he had been lost.

Physically spent and gasping for breath Mr Smith was winched back to the helicopter.

The yachtsman resurfaced some distance away and was seen by the pilot, Dean Herrick.

Despite his condition Mr Smith went back into the water again. After being frequently submerged he managed to reach the yachtsman and place him in the strop, bear-hugging him to prevent him slipping out again. They were then winched back to the helicopter. The man was unconscious, and a dead weight, requiring Mr Smith and Mr Taylor to use all their strength to get him on board.

Once inside, Stephen Smith was completely exhausted, he could barely speak and was vomiting sea water.

He required hospital treatment for secondary drowning. He had sustained a black eye and bruising to his neck, arms and shoulders.

By the time the helicopter had landed safely at the Hawke's Bay Hospital, with only approximately 20 minutes of reserve fuel remaining, the operation had taken approximately two hours, including the one-hour winch rescue on location.

All three involved took the same stance as winchman Mr Taylor, who recognised the situation they were placing themselves in. 'It's just part of the job,' he said.

Mr Smith said while he had not had contact with Mr Horgan he had met family members who had told him how 'deeply grateful' they were for what he, Mr Taylor and Mr Herrick had done.

My take on this account, apart from being impressed and grateful for the heroic actions of the three men, is that if you ever have to be winched to a helicopter, prepare yourself to jump away from the yacht so as not to further endanger yourself and your rescuers.


by Nancy Knudsen

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=102259

9:36 AM Sun 23 Sep 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
EPIRB's and rescues

Related News Stories:

01 Sep 2012  Dismasted yacht with no EPIRB waits 10 hours for rescue
19 Aug 2012  Hopes faded for missing WA sailor
17 Aug 2012  Search underway in WA for missing sailor
04 Aug 2012  EPIRB proves its worth in sudden capsize- seven French sailors rescued
09 Jul 2012  What does it feel like to lose your boat? Tearful skipper tells
27 Jun 2012  Norwegian Star to the rescue of six sailors
16 Jun 2012  Search underway for two - English and Australian - shipwrecked sailors
13 Jun 2012  Cool 'missing' skipper found with jury-rigged sail
11 Jun 2012  Sailors rescued by Japanese bulk carrier
04 Jun 2012  Two solo sailors lose their boats in Queensland incidents
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World



















The first annual WetaFresh is a big success by Tim Wieringa, Muskegon, MI


















Techno 293 Worlds - France and Italy claim titles by International Windsurfing Association,














420 World Championship - Singapore and Spain out front by 420 International Class Association,
















Round Britain and Ireland Race 2014 - Tactics, endurance, achievement
Alpari World Match Racing Tour moves on to Poland + Video
2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup final qualification system published
Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac - Karma Sailing Group wins
Red Bull 49erFX: Easing into the Olympic scene at Rio
Kempe thrilled to invite himself to Gold Cup party
2014 420 World Championships - Singapore wins Day 2 race
Lightning strikes cut short CFJ Nationals
Etchells Invitational Cup - Girls on top in Cowes
National Sailing Hall of Fame reveals inductees
J/111 North American Championship - Wind Czar victorious
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race sets off August 10th
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Antoine Albeau victorious on day 5
Snipe Western Hemisphere and Orient Championship headed for San Diego
WPA Championships - Kids race divisions offered
New Clever Pig launched by US Sailing
America's Cup: Group agrees to co-operate in London Meeting
Copa del Rey Mapfre - Build-up reveals some remarkable enthusiasm
Marblehead NOOD Regatta - Images by Leighton O'Connor
America's Cup: Two AC72 skippers discuss Foiling Moths and the Cup
RS Feva World Championship - Brilliant sailing on day 2   
America's Cup: Alameda makes overtures on Venue hosting for San Fran *Feature   
Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Race Week 2014 - Relishing a challenge   
Edgartown Race Weekend - BBBR and Round-the-Island Race winners named   
Etchells Invitational Cup - Aussies take early lead in Cowes   
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Antoine Albeau strikes back on day 4   
Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta - All set for test event   
ISAF World Sailing Rankings for 28 July 2014   
29er World Championship - All set in Kingston   
ORC World Championship - Third Course area opens for huge fleet   
Day one of the Allen RS Feva World Championships   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Final two days of the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games   
Joachim Aschenbrenner takes gold at ISAF Youth Match Race Worlds 2014   
Maxi Soh scores double wins in CMRC Summer Doubleheader   
29er World Championship opening ceremonies in Confederation Park   
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Action resumes on day 3   
Vic-Maui Yacht Race - Polishing the silverware   
Land Rover Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race Start 2014 VIDEO   
Laser Radial Men’s World Championship 2014- Final day   
2014 Pacific Cup - Scarlet Runner wins   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT