WATCH: Surf charter boat sinks in the Maldives

The Maldivian surf charter boat, Blue Star has sunk in the Maldives, with a group of French surfers aboard.

No casualties among crew or passengers have been reported. While the cause of the incident is to be confirmed, a post circulating on social media indicates the boat hit a coral reef in the early hours of Monday morning.

In a dramatic video posted yesterday to Instagram, Boris Romann, a French surfer on the boat, recounts his experience.

“We’d been hitting the reef with our boat [sic] around 6am Monday 18 April 2022, and at 6:45 am it was definitely the end of the Blue Star surf charter,” he says.

“It was pretty stressful to pack all our stuff while seeing all the water filling our rooms, so we’ve all lost some stuff in the rush. But the most important is that everybody is now safe and we all come back home with an unlikely story to tell.”

The 2-minute video kicks off with Romann exclaiming “Great guys, we are sinking!'” in French. He films the lower decks of the boat, already submerged in several feet of water, as passengers and crew rapidly gather armfuls of possessions and items.

The group then boards a small outboard tender and is taken towards the shore, turning back to see the Blue Star listing badly.

Photo courtesy of Instagram/Boris Romann

“Personally I think it was the most stressful experience I ever had to deal with, ’cause most of us had our rooms under the ocean surface level, so the water was coming in really fast and I had all my photography materials, my computer, GoPro, disk drives, SD cards, phone, passport, clothes, bags etc to pack to pack as fast as I could without knowing how long that f***ing boat would stay at the surface,” continues Romann. “The only things I heard after the impact was my mate @florentneyens screaming “Boris hurry up! Get the f*** out from your room quick!”

The surfer adds that, due to stress, he was “shaking so much and all my moves had absolutely no senses,” adding he has ‘no idea’ how the incident might have played out at nighttime or in a storm.

Towards the end of the video, Blue Star is seen sinking almost completely below the surface of the ocean.

“Thanks to the southern cross charter for the quick rescue and we all wish good luck for the future to the Blue Star team,” Romann adds.

Blue Star before the incident. Photo courtesy Luex Surf Travel

Speaking to Stab Mag, Romann confirmed the incident took place in the Southern Maldivian Atolls.

“We were sheltered by a small island to spend the night but as soon as our captain Andreas decided to take off at first light, he accidentally hit the reef pretty hard. Andreas has been navigating through Maldivian waters for 15 years. The ocean water was clear and super calm this day, but apparently, he had a problem with his navigating equipment. Clunk.

Built in 1998, Blue Star is described on numerous charter sites as a surf boat for solo travellers and small groups, which cruises in the North & South Male Atoll between April and November on an ‘open boat’ basis, akin to a floating hotel.

The 32-metre boat offered 10 double ensuite bedrooms, air conditioning, wifi, and a full galley.

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