Captain saves sailors in sea rescue drama

HERO Captain Chris Clarke
HERO Captain Chris Clarke
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NAVAL forces rescued 10 sailors from a capsizing boat which got into trouble in stormy seas.

Captain Chris Clarke, the commanding officer of Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Wave Knight, answered a distress call from a 70ft boat sailing in a storm off the Omani coast.

The boat, Princess Melisa, was holed in her bottom plates which caused her to take in water and left her in danger of capsizing in the rough seas.

Cpt Clarke, from Fareham, had the RFA Wave Knight first on the scene and co-ordinated a rescue with two Seahawk helicopters from USS John C Stennis.

Wave Knight is currently engaged in operations in the Gulf region.

The ship rescued the boat’s captain and his nine Indian and Kenyan crew during the night last week.

Cpt Clarke, a 46-year-old father of two, said: ‘Once again the mettle and stamina of my ship’s company has shone through.

‘This was another highly professional job in challenging circumstances.

‘They should feel very proud of themselves.’