Tuesday, January 6, 2009

VENDEE GLOBE 2008/09: VM Matériaux spotted

The Chilean search and rescue plane deployed to assist VM Matériaux, following Jean Le Cam’s distress call at 0140 (GMT), this morning flew over the area at 0945 and has confirmed sight of the IMOCA 60. The yacht is reported to be upside down, however it is not clear whether the keel is still attached.

The cargo vessel Sanangol Kassagie, a 180-tonne petrol tanker, diverted to the scene is currently less than one mile from VM Matériaux’s location and has also got the yacht in sight. No contact has yet been made with VM Matériaux, however the yacht’s second EPIRB was activated at 0850 (GMT) this morning.

Conditions in the area are believed to be winds of 25-30 knots, gusting 40, with a rough sea state of 4-5m.

The captain of the Sanangol Kassagie is understood to be working out best to assist Le Cam.Vincent Riou (PRB), one of two skippers diverted to assist VM Matériaux, reported that he was talking to Le Cam when there was a strange noise on board VM Matériaux. Le Cam was inside the yacht and contacted his shore team indicating that he thought the boat was about to capsize. - http://www.vendeeglobe.org/