A man named Reza Baluchi, 51, was arrested off the coast of Tybee Island, Georgia, after attempting to cross the Atlantic Ocean from Florida to Britain. Baluchi had been traveling for 70 miles before a three-day standoff with the U.S. Coast Guard led to his detention. The vessel was intercepted on August 26, and Baluchi was brought ashore by September 1.
Baluchi’s vessel, known as the “hamster wheel,” consists of a metal drum with paddles on either side that allow him to run across the surface of the water. The Coast Guard deemed his voyage as “manifestly unsafe.”
According to reports, when approached by authorities, Baluchi threatened to take his own life with a 12-inch knife and claimed to have a bomb onboard. However, after two days, he admitted there was no bomb and eventually joined officers on their boat a day later.
This is not the first time Baluchi has been involved in such stunts. From 2014 to 2021, he has had multiple run-ins with the law, each involving the human hamster wheel contraption. In 2014, he attempted a trip from Pompano Beach, Florida, to Bermuda, Puerto Rico, and back to Miami, but the journey was cut short due to safety concerns. In 2016, he tried to cross the Atlantic to reach Bermuda again but was spotted 7 miles into the trip. Two years ago, Baluchi embarked on a journey from St. Augustine, Florida, to New York but ended up washing ashore in Flagler County, Florida.
Baluchi now faces federal charges of obstruction of boarding and violation of a Captain of the Port order.