Survivor Club

Rescue Map

struck an unknown object

Name Waltonsmith
Product Name GlobalFix™ iPro
Date of Rescue 09/25/2014
Saved By MV Golden Heiwa with overhead assistance by United States Coast Guard
Beacon Purchased From West Marine
Lives Saved 3 people


On September 25th at 0110, my sailboat, “Transit of Venus”, was being sailed from Hawaii back home to Oakland by a professional delivery skipper, and volunteer crew, when they struck an unknown object at over 10 knots. The boat was about 600 miles out. This being a trimaran, the damage was to the starboard float, of which 10 feet of the bow was completely torn off. Three quarters of the buoyancy of that float was gone. Skipper and crew contacted me in Saratoga; and then proceeded to try everything they could to sail or motor the boat. With so much buoyancy gone, and the float presenting a blunt surface forward, we decided to abandon the ship, and get the crew safely home.

I contacted Mr. S and Ms. W at their desk on Coast Guard Island. Their instructions were clear, concise, and re-assuring. The captain of “Transit of Venus” activated the EPIRB; and within a few hours, the C130 plane was circling overhead, and guiding a nearby freighter to the sailboat. Wefel and Skinner located a nearby freighter, contacted the ship and directed it for the rescue.

Captain and crew arrived back in San Francisco from Panama after 12 days aboard the “Golden Heiwa”.

Commander William greeted the crew, secured them new passports, and put them on a plane home.


I wish to thank you for creating such a marvelous product that saves lives, and gives all of us who sail the sea the reassurance to go out there. The Coast Guard rescue airplane made a bee-line for my distressed vessel from Sacramento, and circled the sailboat and freighter until crew was safely aboard.

Keep up the great work!!!