Boater forced to call ‘Mayday’ during storm

  • Several boats around Bermuda ran afoul of Hurricane Humberto, including this vessel spotted at the West End (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Several boats around Bermuda ran afoul of Hurricane Humberto, including this vessel spotted at the West End (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

A man who hoped to ride out Hurricane Humberto on a boat escaped with his life on Wednesday night after the vessel crashed into the rocks at Hinson’s Island.

The man, who identified himself via social media as Darren DeSilva, was on board the MV Cortina when it broke from its moorings at the height of hurricane-strength winds.

According to a spokesman at Bermuda Maritime Operations, he was not injured.

Mr DeSilva was moored in the area of Ports Island in Paradise Lakes when the mooring broke, forcing him to navigate into open water. Bermuda Maritime Operations reported that the 72ft vessel began to take on water, issuing a Mayday distress call at 8.22pm.

The boat ran aground, with its lone passenger able to make his way safely on to land.

A spokesman for Bermuda Maritime Operations told The Royal Gazette that a male “chose to ride out the storm when the mooring failed and parted”.

“He was in enclosed water and went out into open water to manoeuvre. With westerly gusts of 100 knots a rescue would have been impossible.”

A report on the Bermuda Maritime Operations website said the drifting vessel ran “hard aground” on Hinson’s Island.

“Local residents provided assistance to the solo sailor, who was subsequently confirmed safe and secure on the island.”

Mr DeSilva wrote on Facebook: “When I thought she was going to flip and I would have to abandon ship I just wanted HB [Harbour] Radio to know where I was in case in the morning I was bleeding out on the rocks.”

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Published Sep 20, 2019 at 8:00 am (Updated Sep 20, 2019 at 6:44 am)

Boater forced to call ‘Mayday’ during storm

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