Monday, January 6, 2020

SECOND UPDATE: 'Everyone is Doing Well,' Boat Owner Says After Coasties Respond to Distressed Vessel

Posted By and on Mon, Jan 6, 2020 at 8:49 AM

SECOND UPDATE:

A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crew used “direction-finding radio” to locate debris from a sinking boat after receiving a distress call Sunday evening that guided rescuers to fishermen who had made it to a beach in their survival gear using a life raft, according to a press release.

Due to a head injury, one of the fishing vessel’s crew was taken to St. Joseph Hospital by helicopter while the others were picked up by a sheriff deputy who also responded to the scene near the South Jetty.

“This case is a great example of how having the right survival equipment aboard and being proficient in its use saves lives,” said Cmdr. Brendan Hilleary, the Sector Humboldt Bay chief of response. “The vessel’s crew recognized the severity of their situation, made a distress call on their VHF radio, activated a properly registered EPIRB, wore personal flotation devices and abandoned ship into their life raft. They did everything right to help our crews get to them quickly and accurately.”

UPDATE:

According to boat owner Cassie Michel, “Everyone is doing well, accounted for and with their love ones. … The men where all able to make it to the shore in their survival suits and the life raft deployed as expected.”

PREVIOUS:

At approximately 8:15 p.m. Sunday, the U.S. Coast Guard began working to rescue three crew members of a 35-foot commercial fishing vessel in distress near the South Jetty of Humboldt Bay.

According to Petty Officer Taylor Bacon, Sector Humboldt Bay received a report of the vessel which has lost propulsion near the South Jetty. He said the Coast Guard deployed a motor lifeboat and a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter carrying a rescue swimmer.
click to enlarge A MH-65 Dolphin helicopter, like this one pictured on a different rescue, responded to the distress call. - U.S. COAST GUARD PHOTO COURTESY OF ARCATA MAD RIVER AMBULANCE SERVICES
  • U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Arcata Mad River Ambulance Services
  • A MH-65 Dolphin helicopter, like this one pictured on a different rescue, responded to the distress call.


When the Coast Guard arrived on scene, they found all three crew members had managed to get to the beach. The rescue swimmer was deployed, Bacon said. The swimmer found that one of the crew members had a serious laceration and that person was taken to St Joseph Hospital by helicopter. At this time we don’t know the condition of that crew member.

Bacon said the damaged vessel was in “very poor condition.” He explained there were high waves, with “8 to 10-foot seas.”

Read the full Coast Guard release below:
EUREKA, Calif. — The Coast Guard medevaced a man from a fishing vessel near the Humboldt Bay entrance channel, Sunday evening.

A crewmember aboard the fishing vessel Elly notified Coast Guard Sector Humboldt Bay watchstanders at approximately 7:10 p.m., that their vessel was sinking near the south jetty of the Humboldt Bay entrance channel.

The watchstanders dispatched a Coast Guard Station Humboldt Bay 47-foot Motor Lifeboat crew and a Coast Guard Air Station Humboldt Bay MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew to respond.
The Dolphin crew utilized a direction-finding radio to find the vessel’s emergency position-indicating radio beacon and located a debris field in the surf line south of the jetty guiding them to the vessel’s life-raft and crew on the beach.

The helicopter crew lowered the rescue swimmer to evaluate the condition of the crew. One crew member with a reported head injury was medevaced to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Eureka. The two uninjured crew members were retrieved by a Humboldt County Sheriff’s Deputy that had also responded to the scene.

“This case is a great example of how having the right survival equipment aboard and being proficient in its use saves lives,” said Cmdr. Brendan Hilleary, the Sector Humboldt Bay chief of response. “The vessel’s crew recognized the severity of their situation, made a distress call on their VHF radio, activated a properly registered EPIRB, wore personal flotation devices and abandoned ship into their life raft. They did everything right to help our crews get to them quickly and accurately.”

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Kym Kemp

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Kym Kemp is the editor and publisher of the news website Redheaded Blackbelt at www.kymkemp.com.

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Kimberly Wear is the assistant editor of the North Coast Journal.

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