Sunk by whale in the Pacific Ocean

Published on March 21st, 2023

His circumstances sounded straight out of “Moby-Dick,” but Rick Rodriguez wasn’t kidding. In his first text messages from the life raft, he said he was in serious trouble.

“Tommy this is no joke,” he typed to his friend and fellow sailor Tommy Joyce. “We hit a whale and the ship went down.”

“Tell as many boats as you can,” Rodriguez also urged. “Battery is dangerously low.”

On March 13, Rodriguez and three friends were 13 days into what was expected to be a three-week crossing from the Galápagos to French Polynesia on his 44-foot sailboat, Raindancer. Rodriguez was on watch, and he and the others were eating a vegetarian pizza for lunch around 1:30 p.m.

In an interview with The Washington Post later conducted via satellite phone, Rodriguez said the ship had good winds and was sailing at about 6 knots when he heard a terrific BANG! – Full report

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