Man Traveling in ‘Ocean Bubble’ From South Florida to Puerto Rico Rescued at Sea

Reza Baluchi tried to make a similar journey in 2014 and had to be rescued

041316 ocean bubble
NBC6.com

A Florida man trying to reach Bermuda, Haiti, Cuba and Puerto Rico in a giant inflatable bubble was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard over the weekend.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Mark Barney said long-distance runner Reza Baluchi was picked up Sunday off Florida and his "hydropod" was being towed to shore. Baluchi agreed to be voluntarily rescued.

The Coast Guard tweeted Sunday that Baluchi’s voyage had ended “after he violated a USCG order not to embark on his seagoing journey.”

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The contraption, years in the making, includes 36 buoyancy balls on each side, a life jacket with a water filter, a GPS tracking device and even shark repellent. 

Baluchi set out from Pompano Beach on Saturday, despite receiving an April 15 letter from the Coast Guard warning him not to depart, according to Barney.

The Coast Guard said it had reviewed Baluchi's plan and determined it to be unsafe. The first leg alone was about 1,033 miles.

Baluchi, however, was undeterred.

"Mind is power. It's 85 percent your mind. Anything you can do," he said before leaving Florida.

He tried to make a similar journey in 2014 and had to be rescued about 70 nautical miles east of St. Augustine.

Baluchi — an endurance athlete who has biked through six continents and run the perimeter of the United States — has said his eventual goal is to run through every country in the world and raise money for children in need.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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