Monday, November 27, 2006
Thailand's marine police have rescued a 52-years-old Australian yachtsman who spent three weeks adrift at sea on a voyage from Australia to Phuket. Rocky Donald's yacht, Moonstar, had drifted aimlessly after losing its engine on the last leg of his journey from the Cocos Islands, which he left on October 17. He was picked up off the coast of Phuket and a Thai official said yesterday he had apparently survived severe storms at sea by living off rainwater and instant noodles when his provisions ran out. His engine broke down while he was passing the island of Sumatra in Indonesia on a voyage Donald said he made every year to Phuket, the popular tourist resort in Southern Thailand.Donald said he had been unable to transmit any distress signals for three weeks and was saved by a fishing boat three nautical miles off Patong Beach, Phuket, after a ship flying a Russian flag apparently ignored his SOS. The Thai trawler singalled the marine police, who arranged for Moonstar and her solo sailor to be towed into port at Chalong Bay. Police said early today the Australian yachtsman was in good spirits after his ordeal, and was being looked after by friends in Phuket.