British man taken to Tristan da Cunha for medical treatment

A 21-year-old British crew member has been evacuated from a Tall Ship in the South Atlantic in order to receive medical treatment for a pre-existing condition.

The Jubilee Sailing Trust, organiser of the Norton Rose Sail the World Challenge, has announced that the male crew member has been transferred ashore to Tristan da Cunha from the 55-metre ship Lord Nelson.

The transfer took place at approximately 1830 GMT on Wednesday 23 January, from a position 17 nautical miles off the remote group of volcanic islands, in a launch operated by local authorities.

Lord Nelson resumed her passage to Cape Town as soon as the transfer was completed.

The crew member, who had been receiving treatment from the Lord Nelson’s on board doctor during the passage from Rio de Janeiro, is one of the 35-strong crew sailing the second transatlantic leg of the Norton Rose Sail the World Challenge from Rio de Janeiro to Cape Town.

A combination of able-bodied and disabled crew is sailing around the world on the 50,000-mile voyage that left Southampton, UK on 21 October 2012.

After receiving advice from members of the Jubilee Sailing Trust’s Medical Advisory Committee, and liaising with the JST’s shore-based operations team in Southampton, Captain Chris Phillips decided the best course of action was to transfer the crew member ashore for further medical attention.

Jubilee Sailing Trust CEO, Alex Lochrane, said: ‘The Jubilee Sailing Trust has carried out numerous medical evacuations at sea over the last 26 years and it is something that our experienced team, both on board our ships and in our operations team ashore, take in their stride.

‘The fact that the team carried out the operation in such a smooth and seamless fashion, despite the remote location, is testament to their professionalism, and I’d like to extend our thanks to the MRCC and the local authorities in Tristan da Cunha for their assistance.’

He added: ‘We’d like to wish the young man involved a speedy recovery and look forward to welcoming him back to the ship at a future date.’

The crew member is currently receiving treatment at a medical facility on Tristan da Cunha and it is expected that he will be transferred to Cape Town on a scheduled service when medical staff deem him fit to travel.

Lord Nelson is expected to arrive in Cape Town on 2 February.