A renowned British rower has been sentenced to a one-year suspended prison sentence for his responsibility in the death of a teammate during a record attempt to cross the Atlantic, the coastguard announced on Wednesday.
Simon Chalk had pleaded guilty to failing to follow safety procedures before a court in Bristol, in the southwest of England, which sentenced him on Tuesday, the UK Maritime and Coastguard agency said in a statement.
He was being pursued after the death of Michael Johnson, a 21-year-old British-Zimbabwean teammate, who was swept away by a wave on February 15, 2016. His lifeline had given way to the force of the wave.
The crew then attempted to row across the Atlantic in 32 days aboard the Toby Wallace, the boat of Simon Chalk, a renowned British adventurer for more than 20 years who crossed the Atlantic seven times, twice the Indian Ocean and broke several records.
It was the 16th day of the crossing which was to take them from the Canaries to Barbados.
The accident triggered a major rescue operation involving the British and Portuguese coastguards.
According to the prosecution, the crew had not followed the mandatory sea survival training and had not had sufficient time to familiarize themselves with the boat.