Published: 08:40, 01 April 2012 |
Updated: 09:43, 10 January 2014
by Nicola Everett
A Kent woman has been injured taking part in a round the world yacht race.
According to race organisers it happened when a large wave hit one of the 10 68-foot yachts taking part in the competition during a storm.
Dr Jane Hitchins, 50, who is on board the Geraldton Western Australia, suffered four suspected broken ribs - three other members of the crew from Britain and Australia were also hurt.
It's believe Dr Hitchens works for the East Kent Hospitals NHS Trust.
All crews' families have been informed.
An operation is now under way to get medical supplies and assistance to the crew, who are about 400 miles off the California coast in the Pacific Ocean.
The US coastguard is arranging for a team to parachute down to the yacht to look after the casualties - a nearby container ship is also diverting to the scene.
Race director Joff Bailey said: "We are naturally concerned at the recent incident on Geraldton Western Australia and are in close contact with the skipper, UK Maritime and Coastguard at Falmouth and the US Coast Guard.
"The safety of all Clipper Race crew is extremely important to us. Our skippers are highly experienced and several crew members on board have medical training.
"A deep depression hit the fleet earlier today, with winds gusting over 60 knots. First reports described the yacht being caught by a large wave. We will issue more details as soon as we have them."
The race, which covers 40,000 miles and takes 11 months to complete, started in the UK last August.
The yachts have already travelled to South America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.
For more information, go to the race website.
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
Your No1 guide to getting married in Kent. From dresses to discos and venues to veils, we've got everything you could possibly need for your big day
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating!
PLUS, register for free!.
Read our pick of the best holiday destinations. Whether its a weekend break, or something a little bit longer, we have reviewed a wide range of holidays.