U.S. Coast Guard Rescues French Sailor

Sunday afternoon French solo-sailor Olivier Jehl set sail in to establish a transatlantic record time between New York and Lizard Point in the UK with his 6.5-meter Mini 'Zigoneshi'.

New York Media Boat escorted him under the Verazzano Bridge and into Ambrose Channel to document the departure.

According to the US Coast Guard Jehl activated his EPIRB in the early morning about 120 nautical miles South East off New York. The on-board tracker shows the last position at the edge of the Canyon.

A HC-144 search-plane was launched from Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod and a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City. The airplane spotted his flares and the helicopter hoisted Jehl to safety at 4:40am EST.

Jehl possibly struck a submerged object, which caused his boat to break apart. He deployed his life raft and awaited rescue.

"This case was a perfect example of how to be prepared for the worst case scenario," said Capt. Peter Mingo, the commanding officer of Air Station Atlantic City. "Personal beacons, life rafts, exposure suits and flares were the key to Mr. Jehl being able to effect his own rescue via the U.S. Coast Guard."