Wednesday 20 September 2017

'Hello Sydney' - Irishman rescued off Australian coast after yacht capsizes

Nick Dywer speaking after he was rescued (Image: Channel 7 News)
Nick Dywer speaking after he was rescued (Image: Channel 7 News)
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

An Irishman has been rescued off the Australian coast after his yacht capsized leaving him and his wife facing “waves the size of buildings”.

Irishman Nick Dwyer and his wife, Frenchwoman Barbara Heftman, were sailing from New Zealand to Australia when the rudder of the yacht broke.

The pair were nine years into a ten year circumvention of the globe and lived on the yacht.

"Hello Sydney...we've been to hell and back," he told reporters at a press conference.

"Seas breaking, whiteness everywhere, the beautiful glory of terror facing you," he added.

“Barbara and I were waiting after the boat turned upside down, holding each other, thinking for a split second that seemed to last for an eternity, ‘Is she going to turn upright?’” Mr Dwyer said.

Nick Dwyer and his wife Barbara Heftman (Image: Channel 7 News)
Nick Dwyer and his wife Barbara Heftman (Image: Channel 7 News)

The couple feared for their lives each time a wave broke.

“We encountered enormous seas, waves the size of buildings coming at you constantly, winds that you can’t stand up in and seas breaking, whiteness everywhere,” Mr Dwyer said, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The couple were rescued after putting on their emergency beacon on Tuesday night and were brought to land aboard a New South Wales Police rescue vessel on Wednesday.

“We owe them our lives,” Mr Dwyer said.

“It was truly amazing, to think that somebody had come that far to save us.

“Our home’s gone, we’re alive, I expect to live a little bit longer and that’ll be OK,” he said

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