NEWS

U.K. rower rescued in typhoon off Japan

06/08/2012 09:21 EDT | Updated 08/08/2012 05:12 EDT

British rower Sarah Outen has been rescued from her storm-damaged boat off the coast of Japan, while a second adventurer remains in the north Pacific Ocean.

Outen, 26, who set out in April 2011 to cycle, kayak and row around the world, sent out an SOS on Thursday after her seven-metre rowboat was damaged during typhoon winds, the U.K. newspaper the Telegraph reported. She was rowing from Japan to Vancouver on this leg of her trip.

The Japanese coast guard steamed 900 kilometres off the coast of Sendai in northeastern Japan in order to rescue Outen and her boat, which was leaking after capsizing several times.

At the same time, a second British adventurer caught in the heavy north Pacific weather hoped to be rescued Saturday.

Charlie Martell is on an unrelated rowing expedition in the area and also suffered storm damage to his boat Blossom. Martell is located about 1,100 kilometres northeast of Japan.

Both rowers have been under surveillance by plane and helicopter since Thursday, when they sent out separate mayday distress calls, reports said.

Tweets confirm rower's safety

Outen was able to send out a number of tweets from the cabin of her boat, Gulliver, confirming both her safety and how she was keeping up her spirits by visualizing her friends and family, the Telegraph said.

On Friday, she tweeted: "Hooray 4 Japanese always being early!" That was followed by an announcement that she was safe on the rescue ship. The coast guard confirmed her rescue late Friday afternoon, and said she was walking on her own and appeared relatively healthy.

Her boat had to be abandoned.

She had signalled for help on Thursday morning 900 kilometres off Japan's northeastern coast, saying there was a hole in her boat and that water was seeping in, according to the coast guard.

Another coast guard vessel was headed to rescue Martell, who had been on a separate solo trek when he got caught up in the same storm.

In Outen's planned 2½-year journey, she was trying to circle the globe using only human power — cycling, rowing and kayaking more than 32,000 kilometres.

Martell said on his website that he planned to row "solo and unsupported" across the Pacific.

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