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Coast Guard response report

Recent responses from Michigan and around the nation

Recent responses from Michigan and around the nation

42-foot cat capsizes

Station Charlevoix, Mich.

The Coast Guard worked with a local fire department to rescue three people from the water after their 42-foot catamaran capsized about two miles north of Bay Harbor. A good Samaritan reported the capsized boat to Coast Guard Station Charlevoix. The Coast Guard also received a signal from the catamaran’s Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon. A 41-foot utility boat from Station Charlevoix and a rescue boat from the fire department were dispatched to the location. Divers from the fire department boat found the boater trapped inside the cabin. The divers were able to get the survivors to the surface where a rescue swimmer from Air Station Traverse City assisted the boaters onboard the Coast Guard boat. The boaters were then transported back to Station Charlevoix, where they were treated by local EMS. All three survivors suffered mild hypothermia. (Oct. 19)

Sailors vs. hurricane

Station Fort Myers Beach, Fla.

Two boaters on board their 37-foot sailboat requested the assistance of the Coast Guard as they were unable to continue to sustain the high winds and seas of Hurricane Jeanne. The master of the sailboat contacted the Coast Guard, saying they were having difficulty steering. The Coast Guard remained in contact with the sailboat, monitoring the situation. As the sailboat approached the entrance to San Carlos Bay, the heavy winds began pulling it backward. A Station Fort Myers Beach 47-foot rescue boat was dispatched to the scene of the sailboat. However, due to the high winds and heavy seas, the Coast Guard crew was unable to take the sailboat in tow or remove the two sailors from their boat. Weather conditions on scene consisted of 45- to 50-knot winds and 8- to 10-foot seas. Another crew from Station Fort Myers Beach returned to the location of the sailboat and made another attempt to take the vessel in tow or remove the sailors. The boat crew was able to remove the sailors from their boat. They were reportedly suffering from seasickness but otherwise not in need of any immediate medical assistance. The Coast Guard rescue boat was en route to Station Fort Myers Beach. (Sept. 26)

Capsize in the surf

Station Point Allerton, Mass.

A Coast Guard boat and helicopter crew responded to a report of a boat capsized in the surf off New Inlet in Scituate, Mass. A person on the beach saw the boat capsize and called the Coast Guard. Station Point Allerton sent a rescue boat and Air Station Cape Cod sent a helicopter to assist. The Scituate Fire department and harbormaster also responded. Shallow water around the boat prevented rescuers from reaching the people from the water. The two people eventually made it safely ashore and the Scituate Fire Department reported they were not injured. (Oct. 2)

Pleasure boat taking on water

Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C.

Six people were assisted by the Coast Guard after their 23-foot Bayliner started taking on water about 20 miles off Virginia Beach. After Coast Guard search and rescue coordinators requested assistance from any vessels near the distressed boaters, a foreign-flagged, 300-meter bulk carrier dispatched its small boat to the scene to evacuate the boaters if necessary. Less than an hour after the mayday call, a Coast Guard rescue helicopter from Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., arrived at the scene and lowered a dewatering pump to the sinking boat. A 47-foot rescue boat from Station Little Creek, Va., approached as the bayliner pumped out enough water to begin making its way toward shore. The rescue boat and the Virginia Marine Police escorted the bayliner to Rudee Inlet. The six people on board the bayliner reported no injuries, and were all wearing life jackets. (Oct. 2)

Good Samaritans come through

Air Station Atlantic City, N.J.

A fishing boat that was thought to have been lost at sea was located with the help of good Samaritan boats and the Coast Guard. The 38-foot sportfishing boat that left Bergan Point, N.Y., was thought to be missing after its emergency position indicating radio beacon was activated. Coast Guard Cutter Dependable, a 47-foot patrol boat from Fire Island, and a rescue helicopter from Air Station Atlantic City were diverted to the scene. Group Atlantic City and Group Moriches put out an urgent marine information broadcast for boaters to be on the lookout for the boat. The helicopter was the first to arrive on scene where the pilots noticed a strobe light in the water. The aircrew began to scan the water for any clues as to what may have happened. An hour after the search began, a radio call from another fishing boat and a sailboat radioed the Coast Guard stating they had located the sport fisher. The boat had been disabled due to engine problems. The 47-foot patrol boat took the boat into a stern tow and brought it to Robert Moses Boat Basin in New York. (Oct. 14)

Capsize, no PFDs

Station Venice, La.

The Coast Guard rescued three recreational fishermen after the boat they were on capsized about three miles west of the entrance to the Southwest Pass. The Coast Guard received a cell phone call from one of the boaters reporting that their 17-foot boat had taken on water and capsized. The Coast Guard launched an HH-65 rescue helicopter crew from Air Station New Orleans and two 25-foot rescue boat crews from Station Venice, La., to search for the men. The boaters used their cell phone to communicate with Coast Guard Group New Orleans who directed the rescue crews to their location. Good Samaritans from a supply vessel heard the urgent marine information broadcast, launched a lifeboat, recovered the men and transported them to Station Venice’s rescue boat crews. The three men were found sitting on top of their capsized, partially submerged boat and were not wearing life jackets. The Coast Guard rescue boat crews delivered the boaters, reported to be in good condition, to Station Venice. (Oct. 15)

Nine in a life raft

Station Cortez, Fla.

The Coast Guard suspended its search for nine people who reportedly embarked a life raft when their catamaran began to capsize five miles west of Egmont Key, Fla. Several searches with a C-130 airplane and an HH-60 helicopter from Air Station Clearwater and a rescue boat from Station Cortez covered 3,072 square-miles within and around the area indicated by the catamaran’s master during his distress call. No further information regarding the origin of the boat or the identity of its passengers was relayed, nor are there any correlating reports of missing people or overdue boats. Weather conditions were 2- to 3-foot seas and 15-knot winds during the time of the initial call, and picked up to 5- to 8-foot seas and 20-knot winds later during the search. Mariners were urged to keep a sharp lookout and anyone with information regarding the catamaran/life raft and its occupants was asked to contact the Coast Guard at (305) 415-6800. (Oct. 16)

Boat burns to waterline

Air Station Clearwater, Fla.

The Coast Guard responded to a boat fire aboard a casino shuttle boat in the Pithlachascotee Channel near the mouth of the Coyte River. An HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Air Station Clearwater, Fla., was on a training mission when they heard the distress call from the 75-foot shuttle. The three people on board the shuttle were rescued by a good Samaritan as Pasco County Fire Rescue, Towboat U.S., a Coast Guard Auxiliary boat and a rescue boat from Station Sand Key, Fla., headed to the scene. The good Samaritan happened to be an off-duty rescue swimmer from Air Station Clearwater. He assisted the three people off of the shuttle and onto his personal boat, and provided medical assessments. One of the three people was transferred to the hospital via ambulance for treatment of smoke inhalation. Towboat U.S. towed the shuttle up the Coyte River and tied it off to a daybeacon. They were attempting to pump water out of the vessel to prevent it from sinking and to allow for further towing. The Coast Guard Marine Safety Office in Tampa, Fla., was planning to investigate the cause of the fire. (Oct. 17)

PFDs save crew

Station Tillamook Bay, Ore.

Four people owe their survival to life jackets after their pleasure boat capsized, sending them into the ocean for 45 minutes near Bayocean Peninsula Beach, Ore. A call was received by Station Tillamook Bay that one person in a life jacket had drifted ashore from a capsized boat. The person indicated there were three other people still missing. A Coast Guard 47-foot motor lifeboat from Station Tillamook Bay was diverted and rescued the 54-year old master of the boat from the surf. He had been in the water for 45 minutes and was showing symptoms of hypothermia. The Tillamook County Sheriff’s Department also responded and found the two remaining boaters safely on the beach. Local emergency medical technicians transported the four boaters to Tillamook County General Hospital where they where treated and released for mild to moderate hypothermia. Prior to the boat capsizing the onboard global positioning system failed and the boaters became disoriented and lost in a dense fog. While trying to find the south entrance to the bay, the craft was turned directly into the beach surf, which capsized the boat. No distress call was received prior to the boat capsizing. Weather conditions at the time of the accident were light winds, dense fog with visibility of less than 50 feet, water temperature of about 55-degrees, and surf between 6 and 8 feet. (Oct. 18)