Seattle, Wash., Jan. 26, 2015 — On Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015, at 5:21 p.m. local time while en route to Lahaina, Hawaii, Holland America Line’s ms Veendam answered a request for assistance from the United States Coast Guard to rescue a pilot who had ditched his single-engine Cirrus SR-22 after he experienced a mechanical issue with the fuel system. The pilot was located approximately 225 nautical miles off the coast of Maui, Hawaii.

In partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard, Veendam was able to successfully rescue the pilot, who deployed the aircraft’s airframe parachute system and safely exited the plane into a life raft. Holland America Line crewmembers brought him aboard Veendam and provided him food and accommodations. The pilot, who was in good condition, disembarked today, Jan. 26, at Lahaina.

“Congratulations to the team on ms Veendam for coming to the aid of the pilot and for working together with the Coast Guard to conduct this successful rescue operation,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line. “January has been an eventful month for our ships with several rescues around the world, and we are honored to be able to assist in any distress situation when needed.”

Veendam currently is in the middle of an 18-day Circle Hawaii cruise roundtrip from San Diego, Calif., which departed Jan. 20.

This is the third rescue at sea by a Holland America Line ship in 2015. On Jan. 3, ms Zuiderdam rescued eight crewmembers from a sinking vessel in the Caribbean, and Jan. 4 ms Zaandam came to the aid of seven stranded crewmembers at the Arctowski Polish research station at King George Island in Antarctica.

For more information about Holland America Line, contact a travel professional or call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (1-877-724-5425) or visit www.hollandamerica.com.

Editor’s note: Additional photos are available at http://www2.cleanpix.com/cleanpix/portal/WAnD-25N-Qm6.

Link to official United States Coast Guard video: http://www.dvidshub.net/video/388574/pilot-safe-after-ditching-253-miles-maui#.VMZA7ye2jLU.

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