The sprained ankle that saved popular Deadliest Catch captain's life

'Deadliest Catch': The Accident That Saved Sig Hansen's Life
'Deadliest Catch': The Accident That Saved Sig Hansen's Life

Longtime 'Deadliest Catch' captain Sig Hansen recalls returning from sea as a kid just before the holidays. Instead of going home like everyone else, he headed west and got a job on a different boat fishing for deep water brown crab.

As he jumped over the rail to board the boat, he sprained his ankle.

Hansen recalls the captain of that boat looking at his swollen ankle saying, "Bad luck! What are you going to do?" He tried to convince the captain that it would get better, but the captain sent him away. Hansen flew home and the boat went out fishing without him.

That boat disappeared. No one ever saw it again. "Basically, a sprained ankle saved my life," the captain explains. "There's a lot of things cameras don't catch."

Hansen admits that he's more fearful heading out to sea with each year that passes. "Bad things can happen if you're not careful and I don't want to be a part of it. So, we'll see how long I can do this. I get more afraid every year, I really do."

New episodes of 'Deadliest Catch' air Tuesdays at 9/8c on Discovery Channel.

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