The Australian Defence Force is continuing to assist the international search and rescue operation for two yachtsmen following significant damage to their vessels about 1,800 nautical miles off the West Australian coast.
Co-ordinated by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority Joint Rescue Coordination Centre, the Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Ballarat and the Royal Australian Air Force’s P-8A Poseidon aircraft responded at short notice to help locate both yachts and render assistance.
The French fisheries patrol vessel Osiris recovered the injured sailor Abhilash Tomy from the damaged yacht ‘Thuriya’, and another sailor, Gregor McGuckin, from a second damaged yacht. Both sailors were transported to Amsterdam Island yesterday.
"Both HMAS Ballarat and the P-8A Poseidon crews deployed at very short notice to support this international search and rescue effort. I am impressed by their response and appreciate their support, as well as the support of their families, to save the lives of these yachtsmen," Chief of Joint Operations, Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld said.
HMAS Ballarat will provide medical assistance to the injured yachtsmen.
AIRMSHL Hupfeld said, "HMAS Ballarat’s crew had just commenced their pre-deployment leave before they depart for the Middle East, and their response in these circumstances was outstanding. This was a co-ordinated effort with the Indian Navy and French authorities, led by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, and I’m glad the ADF could support the safety of life at sea."