Charges Filed Against Captain of Failed Expedition

Mar 16, 2011
Outside Magazine

Norwegian Jarle Andhoy, captain of the missing vessel the Berserk, is allegedly being charged by Norway's Polar Institute for a failed mission in the Antarctic. According to a Norwegian news site, Andhoy did not get permission for the journey and did not arrange for a search and rescue team.

The captain, 33, and his companion, Samuel Massie, 18, were not on the vessel when it got caught in a storm. Three crew members were still aboard and are now presumed dead. When the boat signaled for distress, Andhoy and Massie were on land to quad bike to the South Pole, but went back to the base once they heard about the missing yacht.

Nearby ships, such as the Sea Shepard ship Steve Irwin, helped search for the missing Berserk. Crew members from Steve Irwin found the boat's damaged life raft 45 miles north from where the distress signal was made in the Ross Sea. According to AFP, the storm that took the yacht was the largest in 20 years with winds up to 110 miles an hour. New Zealand rescue officials say there is no hope in finding any survivors.

Andhoy has received criticism for his unpreparedness, including a statement from the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators regarding the importance of safety protocols. Don McIntyre from Sail-World says that Andhoy went to numerous people who have explored the Antarctic, including himself, for advice, but didn't seem to follow it. McIntyre has sailed the Ross Sea the past six seasons and has experienced harsh conditions and wrecks, including three split hulls.

According to Andhoy's lawyer, the captain knew there was a possibility of charges and that he might face prison time because of the failed journey.

Sea Shepard Video has live from-the-boat footage of the search for the Berserk.


--Mattie Schuler

Filed To: Adventure

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