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Coast Guard responses - Florida

Recent responses from Florida and around the nation

Recent responses from Florida and around the nation

Boat strikes jetty

Station Miami Beach, Fla.

The Coast Guard rescued four men after a small pleasure boat struck the north jetty at the entrance of Government Cut. A good Samaritan notified the Coast Guard immediately. Crews from Coast Guard Station Miami Beach, Fla., responded with two rescue boats and were on scene within six minutes of receiving the initial report. Upon arriving at the scene, the Coast Guard rescue crews recovered the men and brought them to Coast Guard Station Miami Beach. Miami Dade Fire Rescue responded to the Coast Guard station and provided medical assistance. Two of the men were injured and taken in stable condition to a nearby hospital. The men reported to the Coast Guard they were transiting south looking for the entrance of Government Cut. The cause of the accident was under investigation by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Miami-Dade Police Department. (March 2)


Missing boaters rescued

Station St. Petersburg, Fla.

The Coast Guard suspended the search for the two missing boaters when members from Pinellas Fire and Rescue found the men on a sandbar in Bunces Pass near Pass-a-Grille, Fla. Five people were on board a sailboat, rented from the Pass-a-Grille Yacht Club, when the boat capsized and sank about a mile off shore. Three people were able to swim ashore and get help from a good Samaritan who called the Coast Guard. Coast Guard Station St. Petersburg immediately launched two rescue boats and Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater launched a rescue helicopter to search for two people in the water. The boaters are two men around 18 and 19 years old. All five boaters were suffering from hypothermia. EMS was on scene to assist. (Feb. 26)


Mayday call prompts search

Station Yankeetown, Fla.

The Coast Guard suspended the search for a possible boater in distress in the vicinity of the Swanee River pending further developments. Coast Guard Station Yankeetown received a report from two separate sources stating that a female voice was heard calling, “Mayday, mayday, Little Man taking on water two miles off Swanee” on VHF channel 16. The Coast Guard launched a rescue boat from Station Yankeetown along with a rescue helicopter and a C-130 from Air Station Clearwater. The rescue crews searched through the night with no sight of the sinking boat. (March 13)


Daysail requires rescue

Rescue Coordination Center Curacao

A U.S. citizen was rescued by the crew of a fishing boat after being located by a Dutch aircraft about 38 nautical miles west of Grenada. He had gone missing while sailing a Hobie Cat in the vicinity of Glover Island, Grenada. The 58-year-old man went sailing out of True Blue Bay Resort in Grenada with his three sons and daughter. The family rented two Hobie Cats. About two hours later, two of the children were dropped off by their father at a beach in Point Salines, Grenada. He was last seen by his children as they watched him sail out from Point Salines. After their father and brothers were overdue to arrive, the two other children alerted security at the Grenada School of Medicine. The second Hobie Cat manned by two brothers capsized on the lee shore of Glover Island, Grenada, where they were found and rescued by Coast Guard Grenada. The U.S. Coast Guard Joint Rescue Sub Center assumed search and rescue mission coordinator responsibilities, planning and coordinating the search for the missing father. The crew of a Dutch Fokker 60 aircraft, provided by Rescue Coordination Center Curacao, spotted the man still aboard the 16-foot Hobie Cat. The crews of a U.S. Coast Guard HU-25 Falcon jet from Air Station Miami and the Fokker 60 located a nearby fishing boat and obtained their assistance in rescuing the father. The fishing boat was directed to the Hobie Cat’s position where they recovered the man who was slightly dehydrated but in otherwise good health. RCC Trinidad and Tobago, the initial search and rescue mission coordinator in this case, Coast Guard Grenada and the Regional Security System Air Wing based in Barbados were also actively engaged in the joint effort to find the missing man.These agencies provided communications support and several search and rescue platforms including a C-26 aircraft and rigid-hull inflatable boats. (March 16)


Two hoisted from water

Air Station Clearwater, Fla.

A rescue crew from Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater rescued two people from the water about 30 nautical miles off Cedar Key. Coast Guard Sector Mobile and Sector St. Petersburg received a mayday call from the boat that it was taking on water and sinking with three people on board off St. George Sound, Fla. Sector Mobile immediately launched a Falcon air search unit and Air Station Clearwater launched a rescue helicopter to search for the people in the water. Coast Guard units searched a 2,800-square-nautical-mile area before learning that the reporting source miscommunicated the position of the sinking boat. The search units located a fuel sheen about a mile long amid a debris field 53 nautical miles southeast of where the source initially reported. The rescue helicopter hoisted two people from the water and brought them to Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Fla. A third person was reported dead, and was being recovered by an asset from Sector Mobile. (March 19)


Search for overdue vessel

Sector Key West, Fla.

The Coast Guard was searching for a reported overdue, non-descript boat 20 to 40 miles south of Dry Tortugas, Fla. Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., received a call from a family member of a passenger reportedly aboard a 24- to 28-foot boat that was possibly in distress. The family member said an unknown number of people were aboard the overdue boat somewhere south of the Dry Tortugas. No further information was given about the boat or its passengers. The Coast Guard launched an HU-25 Falcon jet from Air Station Miami and diverted the Coast Guard Cutter Tornado to search the area. A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircraft and an HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Air Station Clearwater, Fla., were both scheduled to assist in search efforts the next day. The Coast Guard was also broadcasting a notice to mariners over VHF radio requesting mariners keep a sharp eye for the overdue boat, render assistance if needed and report sightings to the U.S. Coast Guard. The sea state south of Dry Tortugas was 10-foot sea and winds out of the northwest at around 20 miles per hour. The water temperature was around 78 degrees. (March 24)


Tug capsizes

Air Station Miami, Fla.

A Coast Guard rescue crew from Air Station Miami hoisted two men from a capsized tugboat on the Intracoastal Waterway on Lake Okeechobee, Fla. The two men were operating the 38-foot tug and barge, heading west on the ICW when the tug capsized. The Coast Guard was contacted by a witness who was unable to help, but saw people clinging to the hull of the tug. The Coast Guard immediately diverted an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter to search the area. Due to fuel restrictions that helicopter had to return to Miami and another was launched. A crew from Coast Guard Station Fort Pierce and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission also assisted in the search efforts. Around 6:30 a.m. the helicopter rescue crew located the two men still clinging to the capsized tug. The two men were immediately hoisted and taken to St. Mary’s Hospital to be treated for possible hypothermia. The tug was not blocking the ICW. The tug had about 500 gallons of diesel fuel on board, which was contained. (March 25)


Search called off

Ponce Inlet, Fla.

The Coast Guard suspended the search for a possible missing boater near Ponce Inlet, Fla., after local authorities found an overturned canoe on the south side of the Ponce Inlet jetties. Rescue coordinators made the decision to suspend the search after thoroughly searching the areas where the boat was found by Volusia County Beach Patrol, Fla., and making contact with the boat’s owner. A couple in New Smyrna Beach, Fla., contacted the Coast Guard after seeing reports of the search efforts and pictures of their canoe on Central Florida News 13 and in the Daytona Beach News-Journal. The couple reported that the boat had been stolen weeks earlier from their home in New Smyrna Beach. Coast Guard rescue crews searched a total of about six hours and 34 miles for whoever was piloting the canoe. (Feb. 20)