3 men survive night in churning seas off Australia after whale strikes, sinks their boatBy AP
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
3 survive after whale sinks boat off Australia
PERTH, Australia — Three men survived four hours floating in rough seas off the northwest Australia coast after their boat collided with what they believe was a whale and sank, officials said Wednesday.
The men were on a 46-foot (14-meter) wooden boat off Exmouth in Western Australia state when trouble struck late Tuesday night, police said.
“They hit something hard, solid — they suspect it’s a whale,” Western Australia police Senior Sgt. Greg Trew said. “They abandoned ship and were in the water for about four hours.”
The men, who were wearing lifejackets, sent out a mayday call and set off an emergency beacon. An oil rig crew that was nearby came to their rescue and plucked them from the churning water about four hours later.
“Horrendous seas out there,” Trew said. “It was pretty shocking conditions: 35-knot winds and three- to four-meter (10- to 13-foot) swells. It was pretty nasty.”
The men were all in good condition, Trew said.
Tags: Accidents, Australia, Australia And Oceania, Perth, Transportation