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Photographer's Note

Robbertjan's great action pictures of rescue demonstrations and exercises by Dutch navy helicopters reminded me of a picture that I took during the "Trompfestival" at Ter Heijde. This time the guy is not hanging up side down, but I was still impressed by his muscular appearance...

Actually, the situation was a bit embarrasing, as the rescue demonstration was not executed very well. The poor guy was swimming in the sea and crying for help, while thousands of spectators were watching from the beach. A Navy patrol aircraft (P-3 Orion) had to locate him from the air and drop an inflatable rescue boat (dinghy) near him in the sea. After about five or six passes, the personnel on board of this aircraft still had not seen him, so they dropped the dinghy where they thought he would be. But that was hundreds of meters away from him! So he was trying to reach the boat, but that took much too long, so the helicopter pilots decided to get him out of the sea. Well, of course this was how it looked from the beach. The Navy personnel probably has another explanation... :-)

By the way, the "Trompfestival" was organized to memorize the death of the famous Dutch admiral Maarten Tromp. He died 350 years ago during a sea battle between the Dutch and British fleets near the coast of Ter Heijde.

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Additional Photos by Michael Gan (Michael_Gan) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 532 W: 68 N: 698] (2776)
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