A Coast Guard air crew rescued a family of four, including two young children, aboard a grounded recreational boat near Port Mansfield, Texas, on Monday evening.
At approximately 4 p.m., watchstanders at Coast Guard Station South Padre Island received a distress call from a family, via cell phone, stating that they had been under way in the channel and were pushed onto the flats by a gust of wind and were grounded. Meanwhile, due to a severe weather front, air temperatures plummeted 25 degrees over a period of two hours.
Authorities say the two children initially showed signs of hypothermia after a cold front dropped temperatures from the 80s to the low 50s. Winds topped 30 mph.
“Anytime children are exposed to the elements and in danger, we know time is of the essence to get on-scene quickly,” said Lt. Eric Vryheid, one of the helicopter pilots. “Credit goes to the parents who called the Coast Guard when the situation started to deteriorate. This time of year, being unprepared for the weather and water conditions can often lead to disaster. Fishing and boating can be great fun, but boaters should always check the weather report prior to departing.”