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Damaged British yacht found in search for Kiribati fishermen

Published on Nov 25, 2012 2:42 PM

WELLINGTON (AFP) - A New Zealand Air Force plane heading to the central Pacific to search for three missing Kiribati fisherman has found a damaged British yacht in a remote area of the ocean, officials said today.

Fears had been held for Peter Bernfeld, the sole sailor on the 38-foot British catamaran Troutbridge, after he lost contact with an accompanying yacht in a storm on Thursday night after they set sail from Fiji.

The New Zealand Rescue Coordination Centre (NZRCC) said the yacht was found by a New Zealand Air Force Orion which left Auckland early Sunday to begin an unrelated search for three Kiribati fishermen.

The aircraft made radio contact with Mr Bernfeld, who reported the catamaran had sustained hull and rig damage and was leaking.

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