Rescued Indian sailor waits to go home

Rescued sailor Abhilash Tomy is recovering after his boat was damaged in the Golden Globe race.
Rescued sailor Abhilash Tomy is recovering after his boat was damaged in the Golden Globe race.

A seriously injured Indian sailor who was rescued off the coast of Western Australia will continue to receive medical treatment before commencing his journey home.

Abhilash Tomy had been taking part in an around-the-world solo sailing competition - the Golden Globe race - when his yacht Thuriya lost its mast in a storm on Friday.

He was located about 3000km southwest of Perth by a French fisheries patrol boat and taken to Ile Amsterdam, a tiny island in the southern Indian Ocean, which has a small hospital but no airport big enough to take a fixed-wing aircraft.

His manager Captain Dilip Donde reported early on Thursday morning that Mr Tomy can "now stand and is eating and drinking, but requires complete rest".

Golden Globe race officials said Mr Tomy will remain in hospital until the arrival of the Indian Navy Frigate INS Satpura on Friday, when he will be transferred by helicopter for ongoing medical treatment and to return to India.

Meanwhile, uninjured Irish sailor Gregor McGuckin, whose yacht also lost its mast in the race and was picked up by the French fisheries patrol boat was taken to the same Ile de Amsterdam.

HMAS Ballarat was due to be within helicopter range of the island early on Thursday morning, with the Australian frigate due to bring him back to Fremantle next week.

Australian Associated Press