1. ITV Report

Yachtswoman on dry land

Two sailors who were injured when a large wave crashed onto their yacht during a round-the world race have arrived back on dry land.

Three British crew members and one Australian were hurt on board the vessel when it was caught in rough seas about 400 miles off the California coast in the Pacific Ocean.

The yacht, the Geraldton Western Australia, is one of 10 UK-registered 68ft yachts competing in the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race, which takes place once every two years.

The boat's doctor Jane Hitchens, 50, from Kent, and 29-year-old Nik Brbora, who lives in London, were transferred by small boat to a US coast guard cutter, the Bertholf, which arrived in San Francisco late last night.

Ms Hitchens has four suspected broken ribs and is being treated with oxygen, and Mr Brbora, a software engineer, has suspected pelvic strain.

Both were said to be "in good spirits" and were transferred straight to Highland General Hospital in Oakland, California, by ambulance after the coast guard cutter arrived in San Francisco Bay.

Two other injured crew members - Max Wilson, 62, a farmer from Queensland, Australia, who also has suspected broken ribs but is in a more stable position, and Mark Burkes, 47, from Worcestershire, who suffered a back injury - were deemed well enough to remain on the yacht which is also due to dock later today.

The four sailors were hurt when a wave hit the boat in storm conditions on Saturday, sweeping away its steering wheel and mount and some of its communications equipment.

The US coastguard had planned to winch the injured people from the yacht but this proved too dangerous and they were transferred to the cutter by boat.

The rest of the 18-strong crew on the boat are said to be uninjured but shaken.

The 40,000-mile race, which features predominantly amateur crews, started in Southampton in July last year and is due to return to the city in July this year.

More on this story

  • Sailors rescued

    Two sailors injured when a large wave crashed onto their yacht during a round-the world race have been rescued.