Sunday, September 26, 2021

Man trying to use floating wheel to run across water from Florida to NYC washes up on Miami beach


An endurance athlete who was trying to run across the water from Miami to New York City in a giant floating hamster wheel for charity washed ashore on a Florida beach not far from where he set off.

Deputies from the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office arrived on the scene at a beach in Hammock, near Miami, after concerned residents reported seeing the unusual cylindrical vessel.

When they arrived, they said, they found Reza Baluchi, 49, of central Florida, safe inside without any injuries.

The madcap contraption consists of a metal drum, with paddle wheels on either side which are buoyant, theoretically allowing him to run across the waves.

Baluchi reportedly told the authorities he was trying to run in the floating vessel from Florida to New York to raise money for charity but ‘came across some complications that brought him back to shore,’ the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office explained in a Facebook post following the rescue.

‘My goal is not only raise money for homeless people, raise money for the Coast Guard, raise money for the police department, raise money for the fire department,’ Baluchi told FOX 35 News. 

‘They are in public service, they do it for safety and they help other people.’

Deputies from the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene of a Hammock, Florida beach on Saturday morning, where residents reported a floating vessel washing ashore

Reza Baluchi, 49, was found safe inside the vessel, and told authorities he was trying to use it to travel between Florida and New York

Baluchi told FOX 35 he planned the trip to raise money for charity

Baluchi told FOX 35 he planned the trip to raise money for charity

Ironically, after deputies managed to get him out of the floating contraption, they called in the Coast Guard to ensure that the vessel was up to nautical safety standards.

He reportedly carries around a GPS with him on each of his treks, so family and friends know where he is at all times, and carries enough food and water to keep him safe and can ‘survive anywhere for days and weeks,’ his friend, Gina Laspina told the local news channel. 

But this is far from the first time Baluchi had to be rescued from one of his floating vessels, which he calls a ‘bubble.’

Baluchi had to be rescued from a ‘hydro-bubble’ near Saint Augustine in 2014 when he had attempted to journey 3,000 miles from Florida to Bermuda. 

And in 2016 he had to be rescued off the coast of Jupiter. Miami Coast Guard spent 12 hours trying to coax him out of his homemade inflatable bubble after already warning him not to attempt a ‘life-threatening’ 3,500 mile ocean journey.

Ahead of that trip, Baluchi had been given a written warning by the Coast Guard not to attempt the five month trip from Pompano Beach, Florida, bound for Bermuda via the Caribbean. Officials said it was too dangerous, and put him and other sailors at risk.

Baluchi had constructed other 'bubbles' in the past and brings food and water with him to survive the long treks

Baluchi had constructed other ‘bubbles’ in the past and brings food and water with him to survive the long treks

He has been rescued in one of these pods twice before, but will not give up and is now planning to travel to Bermuda

He has been rescued in one of these pods twice before, but will not give up and is now planning to travel to Bermuda

But though his latest stunt has failed again in 2021, the adventurer says he will ‘never give up on my dream.

‘The stop me four or five times,’ he told Fox35, ‘but I ever give up.’

According to his website, Run with Reza, he dreams of running through all 194 recognized countries to ‘inspire us and unite us as a people.’

He was born in northern Iran, and by the age of 24, he began competing in cycling competitions, spending seven years biking across 55 countries on six continents.

‘He delivered a message of peace everywhere he went, shared love and began to experience life in a way many people only dream of,’ the website reads.

‘Reza Baluchi has traveled our world and shared in the lives of people from every nation. He understands we are all the same and strives for peace in life, and hopes to inspire unity.’

To do so, it says, he plans to run through all of the world’s countries and ‘paddle a craft boat across the ocean, showing the world that anything is possible if only you believe.’

Once he arrives to a country, his website says, he will have a film crew follow him to document the lives of everyday people. 

He is now planning to travel in one of those bubbles to Bermuda. 



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