Australian icebreaker halts bid to rescue stranded Antarctic ship due to blizzard
SYDNEY (REUTERS) - An Antarctic blizzard has halted an Australian icebreaker's bid to reach a Russian ship trapped for a week with 74 people onboard, rescuers said on Monday.
The Aurora Australis had to return to open waters about 18 nautical miles from the stranded Akademik Shokalskiy because of poor visibility, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), which is co-ordinating the rescue, told Reuters.
The Australian vessel had reached as close as about 10 nautical miles from the trapped ship before turning back.
"The weather condition is not safe for it to proceed, and it's gone back to open water," said AMSA spokeswoman Lisa Martin.