The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:
(PORTSMOUTH, Va.) — The Coast Guard coordinated the rescue of three people and a dog Thursday who were rescued by good Samaritans after a 49-foot sailboat, the Blue Pearl, sank in the Atlantic Ocean.
Rescued was 29-year-old Henri Worthalter of Belgium, 55-year-old Leonard Rorke of the United Kingdom and 50-year-old Lisa Rorke of the United Kingdom.
International Rescue Center personnel contacted Coast Guard 5th District Command Center watchstanders at approximately 6:30 p.m. Thursday reporting they received a message from a satellite messenger device stating people were in a life raft and in need of assistance approximately 900 miles northeast of Bermuda.
District command center watchstanders conducted a search for the closest automated mutual-assistance vessel rescue (AMVER) ships to the distress and conducted an enhanced group call, a broadcast service using the inmarsat communication system, asking for rescue assistance from ships in the area.
The crew aboard Cape Mathilde, a 958-foot bulk carrier and AMVER ship, responded to the Coast Guard's request for assistance and diverted course from approximately 80 miles from the reported location of distress.
The crew aboard Ouro Do Brasil, a 564-foot cargo ship, responded to the Coast Guard's EGC and diverted course with an estimated time of arrival to the distress of nine hours.
The crew aboard Tilda Kosan, a 351-foot tanker, responded to the Coast Guard's EGC at approximately 10:30 p.m., reporting they were in the vicinity of the distress and willing to assist.
Coast Guard watchstanders relayed the updated position of the life raft and the Tilda Kosan crew diverted course.
The crew aboard Tilda Kosan located the life raft with three people and a dog aboard at approximately 12:30 a.m. Friday, transferred the people from the life raft onto the ship, and the survivors plan to remain aboard the ship, which is scheduled to pull into Bermuda.
"The presence and proper activation of the emergency position indicating radio beacon was instrumental in saving the crewmembers of the Blue Pearl," said Petty Officer 1st Class James Hines, a search and rescue controller at the 5th District Command Center. "This stresses the importance of a properly registered EPIRB, which provided us with an emergency point of contact and information on the boat."