AMVER ship assists Coast Guard airlift of ailing sailors


The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

(WILMINGTON, N.C.) — The Coast Guard medevaced three Canadian sailors Friday from a sailing vessel approximately 200 miles southeast of Cape Fear.

Sector North Carolina watch standers were notified by the Rescue Coordination Center at approximately 2:50 p.m. Thursday of three men who needed to be medevaced from the 40-foot sailing vessel Juste Ciel after the vessel became beset by weather. The French Canadian crewmembers fell ill and were reportedly suffering from dehydration and physical exhaustion.

The 623-foot bulk carrier Privsea, an Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System (AMVER) vessel, took the sailing vessel in tow and headed northwest to shorten the distance for the medevac.

Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City launched a C-130 and an MH-60 helicopter crew to assist. The helicopter crew flew approximately 200 miles offshore, refueled aboard the USS Mesa Verde and proceeded to the sailing vessel. The helicopter crew hoisted the three men and transported them to Air Station Elizabeth City where they were transferred to local EMS was personnel.

"It was an extremely well-executed case with multiple assets and supporting help from the Navy and the motor vessel Privsea,” said Lt. Sean Stadig, the pilot on the case. “Thankfully the sailing vessel had an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) on board, which helped locate them. Great job and thank you to all involved."

AMVER is a worldwide voluntary reporting system sponsored by the Coast Guard. It is a computer-based global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea.

Click here to view a video of the medevac.

By Professional Mariner Staff