On Thursday around noon, the EU NAVFOR warship CANARIAS received a telephone call from the Spanish Centre of Operation and Maritime Surveillance (COVAM) informing that a sailor of the fishing vessel ¨Intertuna I¨ had been bitten by a shark, while the crew was recovering its nets. Immediately both ships turned to an interception course and proceed at maximum speed to close their 450 nautical mile distance.
The Commanding Officer of the Spanish warship, constantly evaluating the status of the injured sailor and the conditions at sea, decided to get closer to the vessel and to use the pneumatic boat for the evacuation. Around midnight the sailor was examined by the medical personnel, on board the CANARIAS. After evaluation, they decided to reach Seychelles, as soon as possible, in order to take the sailor to a hospital. Although his status was ¨stable¨, he had lost a great amount of blood, but is now secure in Port Victoria’s hospital.
The Spanish warship CANARIAS is taking part in the European Union Naval Force Somalia - Operation ¨Atalanta¨ against piracy The collaboration between the Spanish warship and the Spanish fishing vessels has been crucial in saving the sailor´s life.
The injured sailor of the fishing vessel ¨Intertuna I¨ who was bitten by a shark was evacuated to a hospital in Port Victoria.
The EU NAVFOR warship CANARIAS completed the evacuation of the Spanish sailor, who got bitten by a shark during the night of the 15th. After 24 hours proceeding to Seychelles, at 1700 GMT, the helicopter took off from the warship´s deck in order to take the injured sailor to the hospital in the city of Port Victoria.
An hour and a half later, the helicopter landed at the airport, where an ambulance and medical personnel were waiting for the patient. Immediately began his treatment and was quickly taken to a hospital.
While moored at Port Victoria for a few hours the next day, the Spanish warship was visited by the director of the fishing company, to which the ¨Intertuna I¨ belongs, and the operations manager of all the Spanish fishing companies that operate in the Indian Ocean.
Both told the the commanding Officer of EU NAVFOR warship CANARIAS that after the surgery the sailor was well, that he will not lose the arm, and that the collaboration between both sides was crucial to save the sailor´s life.