The ORS Int. is the official adjudicator of ocean rowing records for Guinness World Records

 


UPDATES FROM THE INDIAN OCEAN
 
Santa Rosa, California
May 17th 2002 


At 14.00 GMT RCC Canberra contacted ORS to say that the EPIRB aboard Elssea had been activated.
It was determined that there have been no Iridium Sat. phone calls made from Elssea during the last 12 hours. The Argos beacon is still transmitting and there has been no activation of the emergency Argos signal.
RCC Canberra has sent a fixed wing plane to investigate the situation aboard Elssea.

Note: On the Pacific Ocean Row of Andrew Halsey there were 3 inadvertent transmissions of his EPIRB and during the shipping of the Carphone Warehouse from Barbados to Portsmouth there was an inadvertent transmission.
It is suggested in the ORS guidelines that besides an EPIRB an Argos beacon be activated at the same time the EPIRB is activated. This then confirms that the crew is definitely requesting assistance.

Santa Rosa, California
19.00hrs GMT


I have just spoken with Duty Officer Lynn Walton at RCC Canberra.
In response to the EPIRB signal coming from Elssea they dispatched a fixed wing aircraft to fly over rowboat (it was dark at the time the plane flew over).
The flight over the area did not result in any VHF (chan.16) contact. The plane has now returned to base, and Liberian flag ship 'Africa' has agreed to sail to Elssea and is expected to arrive at first light. The request from RCC Canberra to the 'Africa' is to "locate the boat and establish safety of the crew"
ETA of Africa to the scene is midnight GMT.

Santa Rosa, California
At 00.15hrs GMT May 18th


Paul Threlfall of RCC Canberra confirmed that bulk carrier Africa is now on scene and a RCC fixed wing plane is also in the area. It is reported that the rowboat Elssea and 2 men have been spotted, the fixed wing has fuel for 5 hours and is ready to stay on station untill communications with the rowers has been made. 
More to be reported later.

Santa Rosa, California
At 02.00hrs GMT May 18th


C  A  P  S  I  Z  E  D


The ocean rowboat Elsea is reported by RCC Canberra to have been spotted. It is confirmed to be capsized.

The bulk carrier Africa is on site and will coordinate with RCC assets, including fixed wing aircraft and a helicopter that is standing by. At 02.00hrs the decision is now being made as to how best to effect a rescue of Simon Chalk and Bill Greaves, both reported to be sitting on top of the upturned oceanrowboat.

Further updates to follow as available.


Santa Rosa, California
At 04.15hrs GMT May 18th

 

R  E  S  C  U  E  D

RCC Coastguard Canberra reported at GMT 4.15 that the crew of ocean rowboat Elssea are now safley on board bulk carrier Africa.

Text of message from RCC:
"Rescue has been completed. Crew now on board bulk carrier "Africa". It is up to the Master how and when to off load the crew of Elssea. This matter has yet to be determined"

When asked about the fate of the oceanrowboat Elssea the answer was: "We have not heard about what has happened to the upturned ocean rowboat. The fate of the boat is undetermined".

Kenneth F. Crutchlow


Santa Rosa, California
May 18th, 3:30PM (GMT)

 

Simon Chalk telephoned this morning from Australia and said,” …something hit us. The hatches were closed and the boat did not self-right. …we were under the boat and bleeding. We knew there were dangers of sharks as well as hypothermia. It took us an hour to dive under the boat to retrieve the EPIRB” When asked his plans for the future Simon said, “I will build another boat; I’m not finished with the Indian Ocean yet.”  Simon and Bill are in good health and will be returning to London within the next week. Their boat ELSSEA appears to be lost at sea


Santa Rosa, California
May 18th, 3:30PM (GMT)

 

Simon Chalk telephoned this morning from Australia and said,” …something hit us. The hatches were closed and the boat did not self-right. …we were under the boat and bleeding. We knew their were dangers of sharks as well as hypothermia. It took us an hour to dive under the boat to retrieve the EPIRB”. When asked his plans for the future Simon said, “I will build another boat; I’m not finished with the Indian Ocean yet.”  Simon and Bill are in good health and will be returning to London within the next week. Their boat ELSSEA appears to be lost at sea


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