The U.S. Coast Guard was forced to rescue Reza Baluchi on Saturday after his planned trek from Florida to Bermuda fell off the rails. Usually it is risky enough to travel there on a boat, considering its murky past and treacherous waters, but Baluchi was different. He was trying to make his journey in a giant inflatable hydro ball. From CNN:
The Coast Guard first encountered Baluchi on Wednesday after receiving a report about a man in a bubble off the coast of Miami, disoriented and asking for directions to Bermuda, a Coast Guard press release said. It was not clear when he started his quest.
A Coast Guard cutter found Baluchi. Officials described the craft as a “hydro pod bubble” and a man in a 2013 YouTube video called a Baluchi bubble “a big hamster wheel.” It moved along the ground as Baluchi ran inside.
In the press release, the Coast Guard said Baluchi had protein bars, bottled water, a GPS and a satellite phone. The Coast Guard conveyed the voyage’s dangers and asked Baluchi to quit his journey because he didn’t have enough supplies. But he wouldn’t leave his vessel, officials said.
Well, I can’t fault him for his confidence and determination. I can fault him for wasting Coast Guard resources on a foolish mission though:
A Coast Guard HC-130 airplane and MH-60 helicopter, along with the vessel Maersk Montana, were sent to rescue Baluchi 70 nautical miles east of St. Augustine, the Coast Guard said.
He was exhausted and taken to the Coast Guard air station in Clearwater, where his medical condition was evaluated. There were no reported injuries, the Coast Guard said.
“Part of his effort was to make world peace but he got caught up in the Gulf Stream,” said Coast Guard public affairs specialist Mark Barney. “The chances of muscling out of the Gulf Stream were pretty low.”
World peace is a fine reason to attempt a Jesus run across part of the Atlantic Ocean, but what good is it when I’m only hearing about it as a failure? Kudos to Mr. Baluchi for trying though, you have to give him some respect.
The most interesting parts about this are the planning that went into creating the bubble and the trip itself. The confidence of Baluchi is astronomical, especially when you see his promotional video for the attempt and his persuasive argument for why he will succeed:
Everyone wants to know how Reza Baluchi will be successful in his travel to through the Bermuda triangle. Reza is so confident that he will succeed in this trip because he has carefully articulated every detail it takes to survive. In the years 2010-2012 he survived the dangers of Death Valley, by carefully planning where he would obtain water and rest for the night. By going through this experience, this is when the idea of traveling through the Bermuda Triangle was born.
I’m a little disappointed the guy didn’t make it now. His site is full of facts and well worth the read if you get the chance. He really thought he was going to go all the way, even with just a few protein bars for “survival.”