Former boxing champ Wladimir Klitschko, family rescued from burning yacht

Wladimir Klitschko.

Former world heavyweight boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko and his family were caught up in a terrifying early-morning sea drama after their luxury yacht caught fire off the coast of Mallorca and left them drifting in the dead of night.

The 42-year-old, his family and crew all escaped unharmed from the ordeal but the Ukrainian revealed details of the dramatic incident.

He posted on Twitter : "Be careful what you wish for: fate took my wish for “some #adrenalin” a bit too literally and our boat-trip on Sunday night ended up in our boat #igniting and family & friends being evacuated by coast guard and fire rescue-team. No worries: we are all fine!"

He also posted a dramatic video showing the rescue in pitch darkness and the yacht covered in fire-fighting foam.

The voice of a young child can be heard in the background as Klitschko narrates what is happening.

Maritime Rescue said the rented yacht suffered a fire in the engine room and was adrift nine miles south of Port Adriano, the upmarket marina in Mallorca, when the alert was raised. Klitschko was sailing from Ibiza to Palma with his family.

At one stage, there were fears that the yacht could explode so all nine occupants were urgently evacuated on to the rescue boat.

"The occupants of the boat were evacuated safe and sound, while the ship was transferred to port, where a fire crew from Mallorca extinguished the fire," said a spokesman for the emergency services.

The incident occurred about 1.45am in the morning when the crew of the UM7, a Sunseeker model yacht of 18 metres in length, requested urgent radio assistance.

Palma's Maritime Rescue service immediately sent out one of its boats, the Salvamar Acrux, based in Port Adriano.

Once the yacht had been located, it was found that the crew had already put down the fire by their own means but they had been left without an engine and were adrift.

The Salvamar Acrux began towing the ship to port. During the voyage the fire in the engine room was rekindled, so the crew was transferred aboard the rescue ship, while from the Salvamar Acrux the UM7 was sprinkled with foam concentrates to try to stop the fire. The ships arrived at port at 3.30am.

An ambulance was waiting but neither the boxer, family or crew members needed treatment.

Klitschko was sailing to Palma with his family from where they were going to fly to Germany to attend a solidarity festival. In Ibiza he had attended the opening of the Leon Löwentraut exhibition.

 


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