Three Sailors Rescued After Multiple Shark Attacks Sank Their Catamaran

Photo: Australian Maritime Safety Authority
Photo: Australian Maritime Safety Authority

Three sailors were rescued off the coast of Australia after repeated shark attacks sank their nine meter (30-foot) catamaran. On Monday morning, the sailors sent out a distress signal, and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority managed to coordinate a rescue of the crew with the assistance of a vehicle carrier that happened to be nearby at the time of the attack that sank the catamaran.

The sailors say that sharks had already assailed their vessel, the Tion, along their round-the-world expedition, but repairs allowed the catamaran to keep going. The Tion was bound for Cairns after having departed from Vanuatu, according to the Independent. And the catamaran was 835 kilometers (519 miles) southeast of Cairns in the Coral sea when the crew was rescued at 1:30 a.m. All three sailors made it safely onto the Panama-flagged vehicle carrier, the Dugong Ace, but the Tion was reportedly left behind to sink.

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The catamaran had reportedly suffered shark attacks off the coast of Tahiti in June, but the sailors managed to patch her up and keep her afloat. The Tion is the second vessel ferrying the crew on their attempt to sail around the world, having first embarked on the journey aboard a trimaran on July 1, 2021.

The crew, comprising two Russian and one French sailor, were trying to set a record for “the longest cruising distance covered on a frame-inflatable sailing trimaran,” but they abandoned their original vessel off the coast of Chile in March, as the Independent reports. The Tion was their replacement craft, but it’s both unclear and unlikely that it will be recovered.

Photo: Australian Maritime Safety Authority
Photo: Australian Maritime Safety Authority

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