Image: Triana at the race start, 10th September 2023 Credit: Tim Bishop/PPL
At 14:00 UTC, skipper of yacht Triana FR (66), Jean d’Arthuys, informed McIntyre Ocean Globe race control of an incident onboard. Crew member Stéphane Raguenes had fallen on deck, resulting in a serious nine-cm-long, three-cm wide open wound on the back of his leg behind the knee.
Stéphane was taken below for immediate first aid to stop the blood flow. He was sedated and given pain killers. He was conscious, talking and made comfortable by his crew mates.
MSOS, the OGR 24hr telemedicine team and TMAS International Telemedicine support, were contacted and photos of the injuries were transmitted via satelite for diagnosis. Medical advise was provided to the crew. OGR declared a Code Orange and OGR protocols were put in place.
CROSS Gris-Nez, Maritime CoastGuard Agency, Portugal MRCC, Spain MRCC and Morocco MRCC were all informed. Stéphane’s next of kin were informed that while the wound was serious, it was not life-threatening.
Picture left: McIntyre OCEAN GLOBE 2023 – COPYRIGHT FREE for Editorial Use. Crew member Stéphane Raguenes onboard Triana. Aïda Valceanu/ OGR2023
In consultation with MSOS and OGR control, skipper Jean d’Arthuys weighed up a number of options. Initially there was an option of an emergency evacuation to a nearby container ship “CHICAGO E” 10 miles away, which had a doctor onboard and was willing to assist.
A second consideration was transferring doctor Tanneguy Raffray from Neptune FR (56), another French OGR entrant. Neptune was just 12 nm away at the time. Unfortunately the weather conditions, with North West winds of 17-20 knots and 4 meters seas ruled out both options.
Diverting to Portugal, 135 miles to the East was another proposal. But Jean decided to continue South to Las Palmas. MRCC Las Palmas have been advised of the situation and request for a medivac once it arrives in the harbor.
Triana, a Swan 53, is now making best speed to Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, where Stéphane will be transferred to hospital, weather permitting in approximately two days (Tuesday).
Despite not having the easiest of starts to the race, Triana is currently leading ADVENTURE CLASS and is sitting mid-fleet, in seventh position overall and fifth in IRC ranking. Skippered by French media entrepreneur and wine maker Jean d’Arthuys, the yacht was forced to stop racing for four hours on night three to repair a broken steering cable. Repairs were successfully completed using dyneema rope, allowing them to continue unhindered.
The Swan 53, one of the smaller yachts in the race, is sailing with a crew of just eight and considered by many as the one to watch. She was leading Adventure class by quite a margin. Sébastien Audigane, first mate, is a familiar face in the professional French sailing community. With six passages of Cape Horn and two Jules Verne round the world records under his belt.
Yes he and his crew are fast sailors but Jean has only one thing on his mind at the moment and that is the well being of his injured crew.