Air Canada Jet Helps Rescue Stranded Sailor

By Alex Johnston
Alex Johnston
Alex Johnston
October 18, 2012 Updated: October 24, 2012

An Air Canada passenger jet helped find the location of a stranded sailor off the coast of Australia.

The solo yachtsman left a beach near Sydney two weeks ago, but his vessel ran into a storm, which sent a wave crashing into his ship and broke the mast. After nine days at sea he used his emergency radio beacon to alert authorities he was in distress. Australian Maritime officials then requested help from the inbound Canadian jetliner to find his exact location.

“I’ve been very well looked after, the water police and everyone involved in my assistance has been wonderful. … There were wonderful efforts by many people, including the Air Canada staff and passengers apparently looking out for me. … I’m very thankful for them,” Glenn Ey of Queensland told CBC.

Seven passengers who had brought binoculars on board the Air Canada jet scoured the sea to find him. Several of them spotted Ey’s ship Tuesday, according to the Herald Sun.

His stricken vessel was found around 270 miles off the coast of Australia.

“Amazing, and slightly off-putting, to see what a Boeing 777 aircraft can do when not on autopilot and flying/circling low over the ocean,” one of the passengers said, according to the Herald Sun.

A spokeswoman for the Australian Maritime Safety Authority told the newspaper that Ey was injured.

He was rescued by New South Wales Water Police and has already arrived back on land.

Ey said he used his boat’s engine to go out to sea and thought weather conditions would improve, telling CBC: “I thought I had a very good chance of getting back to Sydney without assistance, but after nine days I still couldn’t see the loom of Sydney.”

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