Cruiser Rescued After 11 Weeks Drifting in Indian Ocean

We’re so happy to hear that this story has a happy ending, but we can’t help but think that an EPIRB would have saved this guy several weeks drifting at sea.

The 66-year-old Swede Stig Lundvall was rescued last Tuesday off the coast of South Africa. He left Falmouth, England in July last year and hadn’t been seen since. He lost the mast on his Marieholm 26 in a violent storm and had been drifting for 11 weeks before he was found.

Interpol listed Lundvall as a missing person until last Tuesday. No one had heard from him after he left Falmouth on July 20, 2011 in his 26-foot long Marieholm. He was heading for Perth, Australia or Wellington, New Zealand. The only communication option he had on board was VHF.

The solo sailor seems to have had a good journey south through the Atlantic Ocean, but when he was sailing far off the South African coast 80 days ago a storm snapped his mast. Since then he has been drifting around in the Indian Ocean.

Lundvall managed to alert a passing Greek ship, the Proteus, catching the attention of the crew with the last of his flares.

“Stig Lundvall has explained to the captain of the Proteus of how he shot his very last flare when Proteus was roughly one nautical mile’s distance from him,” said Danny Jenni of the South African Sea Rescue to media.

“As luck would have it, it was the perfect time of the day, but it was the very last of the flare’s light that they saw on aboard the Proteus, and then it became dark again,” he said.

Lundvall was rescued just over 248 miles off Richard’s Bay, a coastal town in the east of South Africa.

Courtesy of

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