Hurricane Sandy

'Bounty' captain missing

Tue, 10/30/2012 - 8:45am

    After having recovered one of the two lost sailors from the HMS Bounty, the U.S. Coast Guard Fifth District continues to search for Captain Robin Walbridge.

    Walbridge, 63, and Claudene Christian, 42, were separated from their crew early Monday, Oct. 29 approximately 90 miles southeast from Hatteras, N.C.. The crew was forced to abandon the Bounty after the 80-foot craft began taking on water in 18-foot seas from Hurricane Sandy.

    Christian was recovered late Monday night. She was airlifted to Albemarle Hospital in Elizabeth City, N.C. where she was later pronounced dead. Christian had reportedly spent more than nine hours in the water off the coast of North Carolina.

    A Coast Guard Air Station crew from Clearwater, Fla., aboard an HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft resumed the search at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 30 and a Hercules aircraft joined the search at 7:15 a.m. A 378-foot high cutter Gallatin from Charleston, S.C. joined in the search.

    The Coast Guard reported that crews are searching approximately 1,350 square nautical miles in 15-foot seas and 42-mile-per-hour winds for Walbridge, who has been missing since early Monday morning.

    Both Walbridge and Christian were wearing survival suits and life vests.

    The Bounty sunk Monday, Oct. 29 approximately 90 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C. after its generators failed and the ship began taking on water. The Coast Guard reported that the ship faced 40-mile-per-hour winds and 18-foot seas which stemmed from Hurricane Sandy.