(PORTSMOUTH, Va.) — The Coast Guard coordinated the rescue of two people from a sailboat disabled by weather approximately 345 miles east of Hatteras Inlet, N.C., on Saturday afternoon.
Watch standers at the Coast Guard’s 5th District Command Center received notification from the International Emergency Rescue Coordination Center at approximately 9:30 a.m. that a GPS alert had been received from a vessel in distress. The alert also stated that the vessel was experiencing severe weather and that both the sails and engine were inoperable.
District 5 watch standers launched a Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City air crew aboard a C-130 Hercules aircraft and activated the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System (AMVER) to alert vessels in the area to the emergent situation and request assistance from them.
The vessel KSL Santiago, a 958-foot bulk carrier, answered the call and diverted to the disabled sailing vessel. The crew of KSL Santiago were able to recover the two mariners and are now transiting to Baltimore.
“This could have gone much differently given the weather conditions, the fact that the boat was disabled and that it was in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean,” said Kelvin Morgan, operational unit controller for the 5th District command center. “The fact we have partners like the crew and captain of the KSL Santiago allows cases like this to have a happy ending.”
No injuries were reported.
– U.S. Coast Guard