Published: Fri, March 10, 2017
Medicine | By Daryl Nelson

2 rescued from capsized yacht in heavy seas off Australia

2 rescued from capsized yacht in heavy seas off Australia

The yacht's emergency radio beacon was then activated on Tuesday afternoon during a heavy swell and high winds.

In a joint operation between the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) and NSW Police, the couple were successfully rescued from the yacht, which had a broken rudder.

The New South Wales vessel was launched at 7pm on Tuesday and reached the yacht at 8.30am on Wednesday.

According to ABC News, 55-year-old Irish national Nick Dwyer and his partner, 44-year-old French national Barbara Heftman, were sailing between Australia and New Zealand when their yacht capsized, leaving them up against huge waves that Dwyer described as "the size of buildings".

For the time being, they're just happy to be alive and Dwyer expressed his deep gratitude to those involved in the rescue mission.

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Australian police rescued the pair 210 nautical miles (390km) off Sydney amid 6m swells and gale-force winds.

The yacht has been their home for the past seven years as they sail around the world, and Dwyer said they did not yet know whether would attempt to retrieve and fix it.

"We weren't sure whether we were going to be rolled again and each time a wave hit, we thought 'is the one that's going to take us?'"

"We encountered enormous seas, waves the size of buildings coming at you constantly, winds that you can't stand up in and seas breaking, whiteness everywhere".

"We owe them our lives", Mr Dwyer said. I really think that the crew of the Nemesis who went out there, knowing what they were going into, who went to look after some complete strangers, really are absolute heroes.

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