TowBoatU.S. Islamorada has shared photographs taken of an incident that took place last week. While this ended up being a relatively minor event, it does point to the need for being prepared.
A center console-type fishing vessel took on water while fishing offshore at a location known as Tennessee Reef. A small-craft warning had been issued, and seas were confused, running about 4 feet. Fishing alone, the owner did not notice that the vessel had taken on water, perhaps as a result of the rough seas. Before he could do anything the vessel slipped down on the starboard side.
TowBoatU.S. Islamorada responded to a U.S. Coast Guard urgent marine broadcast and a request from Florida Fish and Wildlife officers, who were first to arrive on the scene and safely removed the owner from the sinking boat.
A short while later, the towing company arrived and sent a swimmer over to the boat. She very gingerly had to climb aboard and remove unsecured items (such as the cooler you see in the photos) before connecting a towing bridle. The boat was successfully salvaged and returned to port, while the owner was reported to be a little shaken.