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Sailboat on the Atlantic Ocean (symbolic image)

Photo: Carlos Pinheiro / PantherMedia / Carlos Pinheiro

A German sailor, who was freed from a life raft in the Atlantic under spectacular circumstances on Friday night, is well again, according to his own statements. "I rested a lot after my rescue last night and I'm doing quite well again," sailor Martin Daldrup wrote to the German Press Agency on Saturday morning from aboard the German freighter that had pulled him out of the sea. "Luckily, I was just very hypothermic."

The 59-year-old experienced sailor said he had spent almost 20 hours in his life raft after his sailboat sank in very rough seas in the Atlantic. "The hours there were not easy, at night it was very cold and everything was wet. I could hardly keep warm," Daldrup writes to dpa.

His alarm had arrived via satellite and a telephone call from Daldrup's partner Anke on Thursday morning at the German Society for the Rescue of Shipwrecked Persons in Bremen, as sea rescuer Ralf Baur reported to the dpa. "He was in no man's land—about 1000,<> nautical miles east of Brazil, far from the usual shipping routes and very far from help."

Via a rope ladder to the freighter

The German sea rescue team immediately pulled out all the stops to save Daldrup. The only ship that responded to the call for help was the German freighter Alanis, which immediately changed course towards the life raft. "The manoeuvre that the Alanis did to get so close to my life raft that I could catch a line was brilliant from my point of view," Daldrup said. I didn't think it would be possible with such a large cargo ship in these difficult sea conditions."

Using a rope ladder, he was then able to climb safely up the side of the capital freighter "with support from above." I couldn't have imagined that before." The crew carried out the rescue operation from the island very professionally and with the necessary safety measures.