weather started to build
|Product Name||ResQLink™+ PLB|
|Date of Rescue||01/19/2017|
|Saved By||USCG/ MV Hercules Leader|
|Beacon Purchased From||Sportys Pilot Shop|
|Lives Saved||6 people|
We were the delivery crew of six onboard a 75ft catamaran bound for Bermuda from Florida. We departed Stuart Florida on January 15th with a scheduled arrival in Bermuda on the 20th. The weather the first three days was smooth seas and calm winds and we were making great time! We were getting updated weather forecasts for our current area, intended course of travel as well as in Bermuda from a few sources. They called for winds in the 20-25kts range and 10-15ft seas and then to die out giving us a smooth ride into Bermuda, doable in a 75ft boat. On the afternoon of the 18th the weather started to build so we put a reef in the main and prepared for the upcoming weather. As afternoon turned to evening and then evening into the night the conditions continued to deteriorate, we were running into some intense squalls with wind speeds that were peaking around the 55kt mark. As the night went on the conditions continued to get worse and we were basically steering a survival course to keep the waves to our stern. At around 3:30am we got struck broadside by a rouge wave which washed somethings out of the cockpit of the boat as well as flooding the cockpit area which wet the main DC electrics for the vessel causing a chain of electrical shorts and failures. About an hour later we lost the stbd motor due to electrical issues. We decided to wait for daybreak to get light on our side to plan as the seas continued to build. At the 6:00am sunrise we were having a crew meeting when we were struck by a second wave this time disabling one of our rudders. This is when we made the decision to activate the ACR rescue device. We were also able to contact Bermuda Harbor Radio to notify them that we had set off a life saving device. A USCG C130 based at Elizabeth city was dispatched and was over head within two hours. Once overhead they continued to coordinate the rescue. The M/V Hercules Leader was tasked with our rescue and at the time they were notified they were over 3 hours away from our position. We were in constant communication with the aircraft overheard getting directions from them on the ships intentions and constantly reassuring us help was on the way. When the ship arrived on seen they fired us a messenger line attached to a larger line to winch us in due to our extremely limited maneuverability. The aircraft stayed on scene until they knew we were safely on board. Once on board we were treated to hot meals and warm showers and much needed rest. The vessel altered course as they were bound for Spain and drooped us off in Bermuda the next morning near the sea buoy where the local pilot boat was waiting to take us in to our waiting family's !
We would like to thank both the United States Coast Guard as well as the Captain and Crew of the M/V Hercules Leader for all their assistance and for coming to our rescue.
We were on a 75ft Catamaran bound for Bermuda when we encountered severe weather and got struck by rouge wave. A PLB was set off and the USCG was overhead within two hours. We were rescued by a passing car carrier. Thank you to the USCG and the Hercules Leader for all their help!