Mariner airlifted after breaking legs on boxship off Alaska

(KODIAK, Alaska) — A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak air crew, forward deployed to Cold Bay, medically evacuated a mariner from a vessel 220 miles south of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, on Wednesday.

The MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew hoisted the 44-year-old man from the 550-foot containership FPMC 33 and safely transported him back to Cold Bay for a wing-to-wing transfer with LifeMed Alaska personnel, who then transported him to a higher level of medical care.

Watch standers at the Coast Guard 17th District command center, in Juneau, received the initial request for the medevac on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. from the vessel’s crew. A fellow crewmember had reportedly broken his legs.

Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Alex Morris hoists a mariner from the containership FPMC 33 into an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter 220 miles south of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, on Wednesday. U.S. Coast Guard photo

Watch standers requested FPMC 33 meet the Air Station Kodiak air crew at a rendezvous point approximately 220 miles south of Dutch Harbor to safely embark the patient.

“Crewmembers aboard the FPMC 33 were able to stabilize the man as the ship transited to the rendezvous point,” said Master Chief Petty Officer Christopher Cole, Coast Guard 17th District command duty officer. “Through the coordination of Sector Anchorage watch standers, Air Station Kodiak personnel, the FPMC 33 crew, and the LifeMed Alaska air crew, we were able to quickly transport the man to a higher level of care.”

The patient was reportedly in stable condition during the time of the rescue.

Conditions at the time of the rescue included 15 to 20 mph winds with gusts up to 30 mph, 10-foot seas, an air temperature of 33 degrees and a water temperature of 43 degrees.

– U.S. Coast Guard

By Rich Miller