Man rescued from inflatable bubble off the coast of Florida
The US Cost Guard in a press release said that they rescued a man lying inside an inflatable bubble on Saturday (Oct 4) after succumbing to exhaustion.
US citizen Reza Baluchi was pulled from the water off the coast of Florida on Saturday after triggering a radio beacon signalling that he needed help.
He wanted to use his home-made device to "run" the 1,662 km distance from Florida to Bermuda in his giant inflatable bubble, reported CBC news.
He uploaded a video of himself testing his contraption out in the waters of Newport beach, California.
As he found out though, floating in the open ocean is so much more difficult than floating near a beach.
The US Coast Guard said they had first become aware of Baluchi’s odyssey last Wednesday when they received a report of “a US citizen floating in an inflatable bubble.”
“Baluchi was reportedly disoriented and asking for directions to Bermuda.” - US Coast Guard statement
A US Coast Guard vessel arrived on the scene and urged Baluchi to halt his trip after “conveying the dangers of his voyage.”
Baluchi, whose bubble was stocked with protein bars, bottled water, a GPS device and a satellite phone, ignored the advice and continued.
However he finally threw in the towel on Saturday, floating 70 nautical miles (130 kilometres) off the Florida coast.
The US Coast Guard scrambled an HC-130 plane and MH-60 helicopter crews from a base in Clearwater, Florida.
A rescue swimmer hoisted Baluchi from an inflatable raft and he was whisked back to land for medical evaluation.
What motivated him to attempt the crazy feat though?
From his website, Run with Reza,
...to raise money for children in need and to give inspire those that have lost hope for a better future. Also to raise awareness for his Non-Profit Organization called Plant Unity. Plant Unity is a charity devoted to kids that are in need of basic living necessities. - Reza Baluchi
At least his heart is in the right place, even if he cost the US taxpayers thousands of dollars for his rescue.
Source: AFP, CBC news.