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Mishaps & Rescues New England - March 2010

Recent responses from Northeast

U.S. Coast Guard helps in Haitian relief

The Coast Guard is supporting the massive relief effort in Haiti by providing humanitarian assistance to Haitian survivors, evacuating critically injured U.S. personnel and evacuating U.S. citizens from Haiti.

A U.S. Coast Guard boat patrols the waters of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. As part of Operation Unified Response, a U.S. Navy and Army dive task force is assessing the damage done to Haitian port facilities.

The complexities crews face with this massive relief operation are immense because of the magnitude of damage to Haiti's infrastructure.

To date, the Coast Guard have medically transported 29 critically injured U.S. Embassy personnel out of Haiti, evacuated approximately 662 American citizens and delivered 512 urban search-and-rescue team members to Port au Prince.

Coast Guard assets responding to the area include:

  • The Coast Guard cutter Tahoma, a 270-foot medium endurance cutter home-ported in Portsmouth, N.H.
  • An HC-130J Hercules fixed-wing aircraft from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C.
  • The Coast Guard cutter Oak, a 225-foot seagoing buoy tender home-ported in Charleston, S.C.

Fire aboard ferry


The Coast Guard responded to a fire on board the ferry Aurora near Spectacle Island in Boston.

The crew of the Aurora notified the Coast Guard of the fire on channel 16 before they used the boat's installed CO2 fire extinguishing system to put out the fire.

Coast Guard Station Point Allerton responded with a 41-foot utility boat crew and were on the scene at around 11:21 a.m.

At around 11:34 a.m., the five crewmembers from the Aurora were accounted for and safely ashore. There were no passengers aboard.

The Aurora is currently moored at Spectacle Island where the fire has been put out and the engine compartment is being vented. (Jan. 20)

Fouled prop strands five off Cape May

Cape May, N.J.

The Coast Guard and a commercial salvage boat assisted five people when their fishing boat became disabled 78 nautical miles east of Cape May.

The Coast Guard received a call at 10:27 p.m. from a crewmember aboard the 84-foot fishing boat Travis and Natalie, home-ported in Point Judith, R.I., reporting that their propeller caught a chain and they were disabled, but not in distress.

The crew of the Coast Guard cutter Ibis, home-ported in Cape May, was launched due to approaching bad weather, arrived on the scene and took the fishing boat and its crew in tow after they were unable to unravel the chain.

Weather conditions were approximately 15 to 20 knot winds and 4- to 7-foot seas.

No injuries were reported.

This article originally appeared in the New England Home Waters Section of the March 2010 issue.