The yachtsman was sailing from Hobart to Sydney, Australia, when bad weather off Tasmania resulted in him abandoning the boat for his life raft.

A 62-year-old solo sailor has been winched to safety after his yacht got into difficulties off the coast of Tasmania.

The man, who is from Sydney, Australia, was sailing his 34-foot yacht to his home port when he hit bad weather off the island’s east coast.

According to the Tasmania Police, a large swell damaged the vessel’s main sail.

The yacht’s engine then overheated, around 35 nautical miles off Bingalong Bay.

The skipper contacted officers with the Tasmania Police just before 11am local time on 8 November, 2016.

The Westpac Rescue Helicopter was deployed and on arrival at the scene found the yachtsman had deployed his life raft.

He was winched to safety by the crew.

A spokesman for the Tasmanian Police said: “The Westpac Rescue Helicopter crew today rescued a solo yachtsman from his stricken vessel in waters off Binalong Bay on Tasmania’s east coast.”

“A 62-year-old Sydney man was sailing from Hobart to Sydney on a 34 foot yacht when bad weather and a large swell damaged the sail, causing the engine to overheat,” continued the spokesman.

“The yachtsman called police for help from waters 35 nautical miles east of Binalong Bay about 10.50am this morning. The yachtsman deployed his own raft and the Westpac Rescue Helicopter crew winched him to safety.”

The skipper was flown to Hobart where he was checked by paramedics as a precaution.

The yacht is currently floating off the Tasmanian coast.

Attempts are now underway to salvage the vessel.