The 53-foot French yacht Triana, one of the 14 official entrants in the Ocean Globe Race 2023, was involved in an dramatic long range helicopter evacuation of a injured crewmember off the island of Maderia on September 19.
The injury occurred at 1300 UTC, September 17 when crew member Stéphane Raguenes slipped on deck in heavy weather causing a severe laceration on the back of his leg behind the knee. Raguenes was taken below for immediate first aid to stop the blood flow. He was sedated and given morphine under supervision by MSOS 24hr Telemedicine organization.
Triana’s captain, Jean d’Arthuys, contacted Ocean Globe Race control to request a medievac from the race boat. The rescue was carried out by the Portuguese Rescue Coordination Center (RCC) and the Portuguese military, assisted by the French Cape Griz Nez RCC.
Triana was approximately 225 miles from Madeira when the rescue began. The first air element to arrive was a Portuguese fixed wing aircraft which was on site at 1515 UTC. To ease the pickup of the injured Raguenes, the crew of Triana launched one of their eight man SOLAS life rafts. Raguenes was assisted into the raft by three crew members. The raft was then tied off to the stern of Triana with a 39-foot length of line. When the helicopter arrived it lowered a basket and Raguenes was successfully brought aboard for the long flight back to Madeira.
At 1830 UTC the Portuguese RCC let d’Arthuys know that the helicopter had safely landed at Funchal Airport and Raguenes was on his way to the hospital. Triana captain d’Arthuys said: “After the accident of our crew member Raguenes yesterday I was worried with weak wind and still two days to reach Madeira, so I asked Don McIntyre this morning to launch an evacuation plan. I thank Don, the OGR organization and all the rescue international teams French and Portuguese for the incredible speed and professionalism… Raguenes is safe, all the crew is happy and we are now back on track sailing to Cape Town.”