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Crew rescued after vessel sinks

Six commercial fishermen are safe after their vessel began taking on water Monday and sank approximately two miles off the coast of Maui, Hawaii.

Coast Guard Sector Honolulu watchstanders received a radio call from the captain of the 43-foot charter fishing vessel Piper, a 43-foot Bertram, at noon.

The captain reported the vessel was sinking and passengers were putting on lifejackets. The six people aboard the Piper abandoned ship into a life raft, according to a press release from the Coast Guard.

A 45-foot response boat from Coast Guard Station Maui was launched and Coast Guard watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast over Channel 16 to notify other vessels in the area of the emergency and the need for immediate assistance.

The crew aboard the recreational vessel Misti III responded, rescued the passengers and crew, then transported them to Ma'alaea Harbor, where emergency medical services met them. No serious injuries were reported.

“No two cases are exactly the same, but in this case a lot of things were done right by the captain and crew,” Coast Guard spokesman Anthony Soto told Soundings, noting the VHF radio, lifejackets and a life raft on board Piper.

The vessel sank in approximately 1,200 feet of water and has an unspecified amount of diesel fuel aboard. The Coast Guard will continue to monitor the situation for any evidence of pollution or debris from the vessel. No pollution is currently visible.