The yacht, Jedi 1, was on passage from South Africa to New Zealand when it dismasted. The three crew were rescued by the Royal Australian Navy

Three South African crew have been rescued from their yacht after it dismasted in the southern Indian Ocean.

Jedi 1 was more than 1,300 kilometres southwest of Cape Leeuwin in Western Australia on a journey from South Africa to New Zealand, when the incident happened.

The crew set off the 13-metre yacht’s distress beacon, which was detected by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Canberra at around 1900 AEDT on 17 March 2017.

A map showing the location of a dismasted yacht

Location of Jedi 1. Credit: AMSA

The Perth-based Challenger Search and Rescue Jet was deployed to Jedi 1’s location, and established VHF radio communication with the crew.

Video: Couple rescued after battling waves “the size of buildings” without a yacht rudder

“The three male crew members of the Jedi 1 confirmed their yacht had been dismasted and their intention to abandon the stricken vessel,” said AMSA in a media release.

As a result of the yacht’s remote location, AMSA asked for assistance from the Royal Australian Navy, which deployed its warship. HMAS Parramatta, just after 0200 on 18 March 2017.

Royal Australian Navy warship goes to aid of dismasted yacht in Southern Indian Ocean

HMAS Parramatta next to the dismasted Jedi 1

In a second sortie, AMSA’s Challenger jet successfully dropped satellite and radio communication equipment to the crew.

AMSA maintained regular communication with the crew until the arrival of the HMAS Parramatta at 2100 on 18 March 2017.

HMAS Parramatta’s Seahawk helicopter successfully winched all three crew members to safety.

Crew of dismasted yacht in southern Indian Ocean is airlifted

One of the crew of Jedi 1 is airlifted to safety

All were reported to be in good health.

The Vice Chief of the Australian Defence Force, Ray Griggs praised the crew of HMAS Parramatta via Twitter.

He wrote: “Great #YourADF & @AMSA_News team effort as #AusNavy plucks 3 stricken Sth African yachtsmen from deep in Southern Ocean #workingnavy #solas”

Crew of dismasted yacht after being rescued by the Royal Australian Navy

Jedi 1’s crew following the rescue

This rescue is the second major yacht rescue coordinated by AMSA in as many weeks.

On 8 March 2017, an Irish skipper and his French crew were rescued from the yacht, Val, which had suffered rudder failure.

They were struggling in “treacherous conditions” around 400 kilometres north-east of Sydney when they activated their emergency position-indicating radio beacon (EPIRB).