An appeal has been issued for more ARC Europe yachts to divert course and search for the Cheeki Rafiki yachtsmen

The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) Europe yacht Malisi is in the area of predicted drift of missing yacht Cheeki Rafiki carrying out a search pattern.

Having

sailed south of the rhumb line route from Bermuda to the Azores, to

avoid the cut-off gale, the Outremer 64 Malisi altered course to reach the drift area during Monday night, after

conditions moderated.

Four experienced sailors, Andrew

Bridge, 21, from Farnham, Surrey, the yacht’s skipper; Paul Goslin, 56,

from West Camel, Somerset; Steve Warren, 52, from Bridgwater, Somerset,

and 23-year-old James Male, from Southampton disappeared on Friday morning after reporting that they were taking on water the previous day; the yacht’s condition was believed stable.

The US Coast Guard (USCG) resumed its search

efforts yesterday, approximately 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) east of Cape Cod,

Massachusetts, after ceasing search efforts after two days, and following a campaign by friends

and family of the crew members for authorities not to give up on

the Cheeki Rafiki crew.

Information on

the location of personal locator beacon (PLB) transmissions, possible hull sighting, and the

predicted drift area was provided to Malisi via Stormforce Coaching from USCG in Boston.

An appeal has been issued for more ARC

Europe yachts to sail through the zone en route to the Azores, to increase the chance of finding the crew.

The reported upturned hull of Cheeki Rafiki is floating

low in the water and a potential hazard to other vessels, so all

yachts have been advised to maintain a good lookout whilst in the

predicted drift area.

Information on the location and communications equipment of the ARC Europe boats has been passed to USCG Boston.

Any other boats in the area who are able to assist should contact arcrallycontrol@worldcruising.com so the World Cruising Club (WCC) can pass on details to other boats in the area.

A ‘massive thank you’

Claire Goslin, the daughter of one of the missing ‘Cheeki Rafiki’ crew members Paul Goslin, praised the efforts of the Malisi crew.

She told the World Cruising Club: ‘I have seen your news that Patrick Michel on board Malisi is within the search area and has begun a search pattern for my dad and his fellow crew members! I just want to say a MASSIVE thank you!!

‘I cannot tell you the comfort and hope it brings knowing that there are people out there searching for them!!’

Searching yesterday were:

  • a U.S. Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircraft from Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina
  • a 106th Rescue Wing U.S. Air National Guard crew from Gabranski, New York
  • a Canadian military C-130 aircraft 
  • the 600-foot motor vessel Bow Flora
  • the 672-foot motor vessel Premium Do Brasil
  • the 477-foot motor vessel Chem Venus
  • the 700-foot motor vessel Amapola

Weather on scene was six-foot seas with winds at less than 10 knots.

En route are:

  • the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous, homeported in Cape May, New Jersey
  • a U.S. Air Force C-130 aircraft from Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Georgia
  • the 751-foot motor vessel AM Hamburg
  • the 551-foot motor vessel Independent Accord 

Pictures: The ARC Europe yacht Malisi. Credit: Tim Wright www.photoaction.com; Cheeki Rafiki; the missing yachtsmen