Injured Indian Navy Commander Abhilash Tomy rescued by French fishing vessel

Commander Abhilash Tomy, the Indian Navy sailor who was seriously injured out at sea during the Golden Globe round-the-world race, has been rescued. The sailor, whose yacht Thuriya was de-masted in a major storm on 21 September, was rescued by French fishing vessel Osiris, which was the first to reach Cdr Tomy.
The Indian Navy, too, had dispatched a P8i to help coordinate the rescue mission which also involves Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Ballarat.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman confirmed that Cdr Tomy is “conscious and doing okay”. She said that Indian naval vessel INS Satpura will take the Commander to Mauritius for medical attention.
“A sense of relief to know that naval officer @abhilashtomy is rescued by the French fishing vessel. He’s concious and doing okay. The vessel will shift him to a nearby island (I’lle Amsterdam) by evening. INS Satpura will take him to Mauritius for medical attention,” tweeted the Defence Minister.
 

A sense of relief to know that naval officer @abhilashtomy is rescued by the French fishing vessel. He’s concious and doing okay. The vessel will shift him to a nearby island (I’lle Amsterdam) by evening. INS Satpura will take him to Mauritius for medical attention. @PIB_India
— Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) September 24, 2018

Sitharaman had on Sunday spoken to Vice Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ajit Kumar, regarding the situation.
“Spoke to VCNS VAdm Ajit Kumar P, AVSM, VSM regarding the condition of injured navy officer @abhilashtomy. The Rescue Mission is being coordinated with the Australian Navy.The injured officer shall be picked up in the next 16 hrs by a French vessel Osiris,” she had tweeted.
 

Spoke to VCNS VAdm Ajit Kumar P, AVSM, VSM regarding the condition of injured navy officer @abhilashtomy. The Rescue Mission is being coordinated with the Australian Navy.The injured officer shall be picked up in the next 16 hrs by a French vessel Osiris.#GoldenGlobeRace2018
— Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) September 23, 2018

A visual contact with Cdr Tomy’s yacht Thuriya was first established by an Indian Navy P8i in South Indian Ocean on Sunday.
The Indian Navy said that the rescue aircraft found the Thuriya’s mast broken and hanging on the side and the boat “rolling excessively” in the waves. Even at the time, the rescue mission remained a daunting task due to inclement weather conditions with waves of 10-12 feet.
Read More: Indian Navy P8i locates injured Commander’s yacht in South Indian Ocean
Cdr Tomy suffered a back injury after his yacht was hit by a vicious storm with 14-metre-high waves and wind speeds of over 100 knots. The accident left him immobilised on the yacht but he was able to communicate via an emergency texting device.
On Saturday, Cdr Tomy reportedly sent a message, saying, “Extremely difficult to walk, Might need stretcher, can’t walk, thanks safe inside the boat … Sat phone down.”
The Indian Navy dispatched INS Satpura and INS Jyoti at top speed to reach Tomy. The situation was being monitored at Naval Headquarters in New Delhi, as well as by the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre at Melbourne, Australia.
A defence spokesperson said that Cdr Tomy can be rescued only by naval ships.
The 39-year-old Commander, a Kirti Chakra awardee, is the first Indian to sail around the world in 2013. He is the only Indian participating in the Golden Globe Race that involves 30,000 miles solo circumnavigation of the globe without modern technology except satellite communication.
Read More: Golden Globe Race | Indian Naval officer Abhilash Tomy sets sail to circumnavigate the globe solo
His vessel, the indigenously made SV Thuriya, is about 1,900 nautical miles from Perth in Australia.

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