Yachtsman was attempting a singlehanded circumnavigation

A Swiss solo yachtsman was plucked to safety from his damaged 52-foot yacht 800km west of Stewart Island, New Zealand on Sunday. He had been hoping to circumnavigate the globe singlehanded.

The rudder of the 52-foot ‘Horizons’ was badly damaged in rough seas on Sunday. After dispatching an Air Force Orion to locate the stricken boat, the rescue centre diverted the cruise liner Seven Seas Mariner which was on its way to Milford Sound.

The liner found the sailor around 8am this morning and successfully rescued him from his yacht, which was still afloat 650 kilometres west of Stewart Island, prompting a warning that it presented a potential navigation hazard to other vessels in the area.