Students' unmanned boat travels across Atlantic

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Paris Broe-Bougourd holding the 5ft unmanned boatImage source, Paris Broe-Bougourd
Image caption,
Paris Broe-Bougourd came across the unmanned vessel while fishing

A Guernsey fisherman has made one of his strangest catches ever - an unmanned boat from the US.

The 5ft (1.5m) boat, named Crimson Tide, had been released thousands of miles away across the Atlantic by students in New Jersey.

The boat was launched in South Carolina by Morristown-Beard School on 1 December 2012 to test the effect of tides and the weather.

Paris Broe-Bougourd came across the boat while fishing on 16 February.

On the deck were images of pupils from a class at the school.

He contacted the school students who had left contact details on the boat.

Repair damage

The fisherman said: "I found it about two and a half miles south of Guernsey.

"We read all the information on it and discovered where it had come from."

The boat has GPS for tracking and it had a sail that had snapped off.

Mr Broe-Bougourd said: "I am going to repair all the damage, put a new sail on it and take it to the north of the island and set her off again.

"I have spoken to the school and they asked me to let it go.

"It's more interesting that it is still out there rather than keep it as a souvenir."

Teacher Lisa Swanson said: "We were using the boat as a way to study the physical geography of the Earth, the currents and the weather.

"We could see on the GPS that the boat wasn't moving any more.

"The students heard about the storms you have had and feared the worst."

She said the school hoped to exchange information about the project with a Guernsey school.

"We had put in goodies, a flash drive and a T-shirt into the boat, but those have been lost," she said.

"We hope it will go south to the Canaries and then back to us eventually.

"It will be quite an adventure."

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