Unsmartness At Sea

by Jonah Goldberg

What’s wrong with this story ?

Fishermen fought foul weather to rescue an American sailor adrift 500 miles off the tip of South America early Friday, and he was found in good condition, Chilean navy officials said.

California native Ken Barnes, 47, had been adrift at sea since Tuesday after a storm damaged his boat and interrupted his attempted solo sailing trip around the world two months after he set off.

The Chilean Navy had picked up distress signals from Barnes’ beacon Tuesday, and on Wednesday a navy plane spotted the yacht.

At the request of the navy, crew on the Polar Pesca 1, a private Chilean fishing vessel, rescued Barnes at 1:48 a.m. (4:48 a.m. ET) Friday.

“It was very, very hard [to coordinate],” Chile’s director of maritime security and operations, Juan Carlos Munita, said of the rescue. “It was a very far and isolated area where Mr. Barnes was found.”

He “had an injury on his right leg but it’s under control now,” Munita said.

The rescue effort came just in time, as Barnes’ supplies were running low, his longtime girlfriend Cathy Chambers told CNN Thursday.

“He had thought he was being rescued right away so [he] had gotten rid of his medical supplies,” Chambers said. “And he’s tired. He’s probably very hungry … he’s hanging in there, though.”

Me: Okay, I’m not a survivalist nor an experience captain of the seas. But, doesn’t this sound like the guy strayed from protocol just a bit?

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