The Inside Scoop From A Member Of Abby’s Team
The Abby Sunderland forum over at Sailing Anarchy is a great place to follow what’s happening. One of the participants is SMSScott, who is involved with Abby’s circumnavigation. He recently posted this information:
Between about 3:00 pm PDT and 5:00 pm PDT we had many very short broken calls from iridium phone from inside boat.
Abby had been Knocked Down several times in 60 Kts winds earlier in the day. Last Knock Down stripped radar from gimbaled mount on mast. There was slight amount of water in boat. No other damage was noted running backs were intact. A full damage survey had not been done yet outside.
There are no other details of any of the particulars from Abby, like i said they were very very short broken and dropped calls.
She felt she was in good shape after these incidents. The main reason for the call was engine would not start. We got engine started and it was working OK. B&G wind instruments atop mast were still in working order she had 35 Kts wind and was sailing with jenny only. Basically she felt all was OK.
Iridium dropped another call and we expected a quick call back as she had been doing for several hours. 30 minutes to 1 hour passed with no contact.
Then USCG called with first EPIRB deployment this was a manual EPIRB from inside cabin. Short time later Personal EPIRB was also activated. There is also a Class 1 automatic deployment EPIRB in cockpit that has not activated.Both EPIRB’s were tracking with each other as best as could be determined at this early stage. Just about the time of EPIRB activation it would have been getting dark.
She does have a life raft and survival suite.
Her last water temperature report June 5 was 54 degrees F and cabin was 60 degree F…since then just yesterday (i think) she has reported verbally a cabin temp of 65 degree F
Search and Rescue has been handed over to the French.
French navy vessel 2 1/2 days away has been diverted to EPIRB position. Fishing vessel 40 hours away has also been diverted to EPIRB location.
Initial EPIRB location was 557 NM NNE of PORT-AUX-FRANCIAS.
That is the extent of what we know.
This is the most full and complete info you will get from anywhere I was on the phone calls with her. If you hear anything else but this it is either not true or it is new info.
The good news I take from this is that the automatic EPIRB has not been activated. That likely means Wild Eyes is still afloat, and as long as Abby is still aboard that gives hope. Stay tuned.
Update: Similar account from Abby’s family on her blog. I’m starting to hope that after getting creamed she just decided she’d had enough and punched the two manual EPIRBs, calling to be taken off the boat. If so, she will be found, and should be safe.
Here’s another video of Abby, describing her plans: