After being stranded for over four hours nearly 50 miles off the coast of Morro Bay, Calif., a solo rower participating in the Great Pacific Race was rescued thanks in part to his satellite phone. The rower, who had capsized several times due to rough seas and high winds after departing from Monterey, Calif., was able to contact the U.S. Coast Guard and remain continuous communication with the rescue team via satellite phone until a helicopter crew arrived at the scene, according to a story at SatNews.com.
Once they arrived, the Coast Guard crew lowered a rescue swimmer who swam out to the rowboat to find the rower in stable condition. The rower was then hoisted into the helicopter and taken to Monterey Regional Airport where an emergency care unit performed an evaluation.
The pilot of the helicopter crew, Lieutenant Commander Black McKinney, said the rower was equipped with the right gear, including the satellite phone, and that his preparedness “increased his chance of survival.”
The rescue was the second for the Coast Guard associated with the Great Pacific Race.
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