abby sunderland in big trouble
We are working on finding out what is happening, but it doesn’t look good for Abby Sunderland.
Update: French Search and Rescue has Requested assistance from the Australian Search and Rescue. Australian Search and Rescue have chartered a plane from Qantas that will do a fly over at first
Between about 3:00 pm PDT and 5:00 pm PDT we had many very short broken calls from iridium phone from inside boat.
Abby had been Knocked Down several times in 60 Kts winds earlier in the day. Last Knock Down stripped radar from gimbaled mount on mast. There was slight amount of water in boat. No other damage was noted running backs were intact. A full damage survey had not been done yet outside.
She felt she was in good shape after these incidents. The main reason for the call was engine would not start. We got engine started and it was working OK. B&G wind instruments atop mast were still in working order she had 35 Kts wind and was sailing. Basically she felt all was OK.
Iridium dropped another call and we expected a quick call back as she had been doing for several hours. 30 minutes to 1 hour passed with no contact.
Then USCG called with first EPIRB deployment this was a manual EPIRB from inside cabin. Short time later Personal EPIRB was also activated. There is also a Class 1 automatic deployment EPIRB in cockpit that has not activated.
Just about the time of EPIRB activation it would have been getting dark.
She does have a life raft and survival suite.
Her last water temperature report June 5 was 54 degrees F and cabin was 60 degree F…since then she has reported a cabin temp of 65 degree F
Search and Rescue has been handed over to the French.
French navy vessel 2 1/2 days away has been diverted to EPIRB position. Fishing vessel 40 hours away has also been diverted to EPIRB location.
Initial EPIRB location was 557 NM NNE of PORT-AUX-FRANCIAS.
That is the extent of what we know.
This is the most full and complete info you will get from anywhere I was on the phone calls with her. If you hear anything else but this it is either not true or it is new info."
While we do not have the exact LAT/LON on her position, last reports were approximately 455 miles NE of the de Kerguelen Islands deep in the Southern Ocean. With Winter officially beginning in about ten days, the weather systems apparently missed that message and are already making this already treacherous portion of the world a place you don’t want to be right now. A very tightly wound low pressure system is passing to Abby’s south at the moment and the gradients suggest winds in excess of 45 knots sustained and very large seas.
There is a ton of info being shared in our SA forum right now…