The community is coming out in support of avid sailor Danny Round after a near-death accident in Fiji. More than $20,000 has been raised to go towards Danny’s extensive hospital and air-vac bills after he was thrown from his tender while exploring some of Fiji’s remote atolls and bays near Fulaga.
It was a Sunday in mid-September when Danny, who grew up on Waiheke and began sailing at around eight years old, encountered a strong 20-knot breeze and choppy waters. Friends and crew from other yachts in the area were onshore and Danny was returning to the anchorage where his 43-foot sailing sloop Rockstar was docked.
“It was quite windy and I tried to raise my brand-new tender above the chop. My thought, as I throttled up, was to get the dingy semi lifted by its speed and the wind, to ride above the sea state,” Danny told Gulf News on the phone from Fiji.
“As I was flying along, I underestimated the wind gusts, and the bow started to lift off the water. Unfortunately, my reactions were just a bit too sudden and strong, sending the bow down harder than I should have, digging the hull into a wave.”
Danny was catapulted forward and the motor’s kill cord slipped from his wrist. The boat then ploughed over him, the outboard’s blades ripping into his face and body. Despite his severe injuries the sailor remained conscious and watched the tender motoring in circles hoping for an opportunity to get back on, meanwhile the water was turning red as he bled uncontrollably. • Sophie Boladeras
Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!