Coast Guard rescues five rowers off SLO County coast
June 23, 2014
The U.S. Coast Guard rescued five rowers struggling to survive ocean currents west of San Luis Obispo County over the weekend.
The rowers were participating in a race from Monterey to Honolulu, but had to call its quits early on due to rough sea conditions. Coast Guard helicopters airlifted four men about 77 miles west of the county coastline on Saturday morning, then another about 50 miles off the coast of Morro Bay early Sunday morning.
Rough conditions were causing the rowers’ boats to capsize. Winds gusted at more than 30 mph in the area over the weekend, and waves swelled to nine feet tall.
Three of the rowers rescued were from England, and one was from New Zealand. San Diego resident Jim Bauer, 65, was the only American.
The 2,400-mile trek across the Pacific Ocean is known as the Great Pacific Race. The race began with 13 participants, but only seven now remain.
Bauer was the lone participant competing as a single rower.