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Thursday, 9 August, 2001, 13:24 GMT 14:24 UK
'Captain Calamity' loses touch
Coastguard map
Coastguards want Mr Hill to get in touch
A yachtsman dubbed Captain Calamity has gone off the air again during his latest sea adventure.

Stuart Hill, 58, from Essex, promised coastguards in Scotland that he would stay in touch with them while at sea.

But coastguards in Aberdeen said he has not been in touch with them - despite his intention to give his position every day after a string of mishaps on his 2000-mile journey round the coast of Britain.

Mr Hill has been trying to raise money for charity during his trip.

I am not worried about him, he is a perfectly competent sailor and the voyage is something he has always wanted to do

Violet Hill

The crew of a Norwegian oil tanker spotted his 14ft converted rowing boat Maximum Exposure on Wednesday, heading north off the Scottish coast.

Despite his failure to contact coastguards, neither they nor his wife, Violet, have voiced concerned about his safety.

Mrs Hill said her husband, to whom she has been married for 30 years, has always managed to land on his feet.

She said: "I am not worried about him, he is a perfectly competent sailor and the voyage is something he has always wanted to do."

Last month, his efforts to circumnavigate the British Isles resulted in five rescue missions by lifeboats and two by helicopters.

Aquatic ambitions

At the time, Great Yarmouth Coastguard's Operations manager Rab Taylor warned Mr Hill that his vessel could not cope with the demands of the coastal journey.

Undeterred, Mr Hill has embarked on another attempt to fulfil his aquatic ambitions.

Shetland coastguard manager Jim Sinclair said he believed Mr Hill was safe and well.

"The tanker crew did not see Mr Hill but they were sure he was still on board and in control of the boat," he said.

"We would like to hear from him because as he heads north, he will be coming into an area where there is quite a lot more shipping about.

"There is a north-north easterly (wind) blowing at 15 to 20 knots and it would be a bit bouncy for him out there - his boat is more like a bath tub."

See also:

07 Jul 01 | Scotland
Luckless sailor rescued three times
13 Apr 01 | Europe
Briton nears boat marathon's end
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