Monday, February 27, 2012

Three saved after boat goes aground on Umnak

This just in from the U.S. Coast Guard:

Feb. 27, 2012

Seattle fishermen rescued in the Aleutian Islands

ANCHORAGE — The Coast Guard rescued three fishermen from the northwest side of Umnak Island, one island west of Unalaska Island, after their 58-foot fishing vessel went aground there at 11:46 p.m. Sunday.

A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew forward deployed to St. Paul Island rescued the three crewmembers at 3:19 a.m. and safely delivered them to Unalaska with no reported medical issues or injuries.

Coast Guard communications station Kodiak received a radio call for help from the crew of the Seattle-based fishing vessel Neptune 1 at 11:21 p.m. stating that their fishing vessel was disabled and drifting toward the island.

After receiving the distress call, Coast Guard watchstanders immediately directed the launch of the helicopter and an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Kodiak. The Coast Guard cutter Alex Haley also was diverted from their patrol near Dutch Harbor.

The fishing vessel Alaskan Enterprise, 25 miles away from the Neptune 1, also responded to assist the rescue effort and helped by relaying essential information from the Neptune 1 crew to the rescuers. The Alaskan Enterprise also used its floodlights to help guide the rescue helicopter to the stranded fishermen.

The Neptune 1 crew reported that an engine failure had caused them to drift ashore. The crew donned their survival suits and swam to shore since they did not feel safe aboard the grounded fishing vessel. They also activated their emergency position indicating radio beacon to help rescue crews quickly locate them.

"The crew of the Neptune 1 took all the right steps to ensure their successful rescue, including the activation of their emergency beacon," said Raymond Dwyer, District 17 Command duty officer. "The communications and lighting assistance of the Alaskan Enterprise was also instrumental in the positive outcome of this case."

The vessel is reported as high and dry on the beach resting on its right side. An unknown amount of fuel is on board and Coast Guard response crews will be working with the vessel owner to help minimize any potential environmental impact from the grounding. No pollution has been reported at this time.

Weather was reported as snowing with winds of 25-40 mph and seas of 12-15 feet.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a case of good emergency prepping, training, and responses. Good job!

Anonymous said...

4 hours to rescue. good thing they were aground.

Anonymous said...

Kind of hard to respond any faster when dealing with how remote the area is, as well as the harsh wx conditions at the time. You can't just launch a helo from anywhere...

Anonymous said...

They were on the next island over probably less than 20 miles away from dutch harbor. I bet it was a short flight back to base once they got picked up. 5-10 minutes tops? Remote location? How long does it take the coast guard to launch from kodiak to support injured personnel or vessels? How many have died waiting for helos? With their resources it is bullshit if they don't have a helo ready.

Anonymous said...

Please use some commomsence when pointing fingers. Try holding up for six day in real shitty weather
when no one knows exaxtly where you are. E-perbs are a great new tool and so is our United States Coast Guard. 4 hrs is hardly a way to long. Words from a survivor.
Thanks for looking for us. It's been 35 years now. 2/22/1977.

Anonymous said...

I'm alive today, because of the brave men and women of The United States Coast Guard. They launched a Helo in very bad weather and hauled us off of a sunken boat that was, incidentally, beached. They got to us as soon as humanly possible, which I'm sure is exactly what happened in this case. Had there been no emergency rescue people everyone on that boat would be dead. Don't ever criticize these men and women, who risk their own lives to save total strangers. Don't ever say "it's their job". Next time you see someone from the Coast Guard, you shake their hand and thank them. Anything less would be an insult!

Anonymous said...

To 9 pm and 840 am,

36 yrs in the GOA and Western Alaska/Bering Sea. Don't even think of implying that the Air Wing of the CG is anything but the most dedicated, on point, selfless group of souls you will ever have the priviledge to cross paths with. You see one of those guys, say thank you, buy his or her dinner and tip your hat. When your day turns into a s..t show they will be there for you. Lived it, seen it many times. Show some respect where it is due.

Anonymous said...

Air wing of CG is awesome.... The communication stations could stand some improvement. Still trying to see the logic in moving commsta fom Kodiak to anchorage.

Anonymous said...

Never criticize the coast guard? They don't ever get things wrong? They're "always" ready? Think again. You never know if that helo is on the tarmac or out training that day...will it be ready for a rescue? Will it be deployed ASAP to an emergency or will there be a 1 to 2 hour delay between the mayday and the launch of the helo? There have been times when the helo wasn't ready, and it didn't launch til to late. I guess they can't be criticized in the air wing... never mind they spend 2 trillion on a bunch of cruisers and all the money disappears... Wonder why they don't have more helicopters and pilots?