Trimaran Ady Gil was rammed by a Japanese whaling boat in Antarctic waters earlier this week. The futuristic powerboat had been sent to oppose Japanese whalers and was subsequently sliced in two, sparking a media frenzy around the world.
The Chatsworth PR team has worked closely in the past with Ady Gil, previously called Earthrace, to support its recent successful record-breaking world circumnavigation attempt. The crew of the boat is part of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's fleet battling Japanese whalers in the Antarctic.
The agency managed dozens of calls throughout the night following the incident, working closely with the Sea Shepherd team.
Chatsworth CEO Nick Murray-Leslie said: ‘It was a long night as calls came in from the Australian, New Zealand broadcast and print media and international media. We worked closely with the team to respond quickly and keep the flow of information going.'
‘It is now important to ascertain the facts officially, although many people have made their minds up from the YouTube footage of the incident, which seems pretty unequivocal. We welcome the news that the Kiwi and Japanese governments are to meet to discuss this matter.'
He added: ‘From a PR perspective, it was the YouTube clip that sparked the most interest in the incident as it clearly reveals the danger the crew were in and the force of the impact with the whaler. This is not a game and the stakes are high.'
The organisation responsible for the annual whaling hunt in Japan, the Institute for Cetacean Research, has denied the Shonan Maru 2 was responsible for the crash with the Ady Gil.