Articles Posted in Vessel Capsizings

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A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Research Vessel has just located the wreck of the missing F/V DESTINATION that sank in the Bering Sea this past February. The vessel and its six crew members were tragically lost in the capsize.

On the cold morning of Saturday, February 11, 2017, crew aboard the F/V DESTINATION was traveling to the fishing grounds and was just off St. George Island in the Pribilofs of the Bering Sea. Events that followed before the vessel ultimately sank are being investigated by the U.S. Coast Guard.

The crew did not have time to send a May Day—only an Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon signal was set off by F/V DESTINATION crew. This allowed immediate responders to reach the destination, but only buoys, a life ring and other debris were found at the site.

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StarKingRescueWARRENTON, Ore. – Five commercial fishermen were rescued from the water after their fishing vessel STAR KING, a 55-foot stern trawler, capsized and sank near the mouth of the Columbia River early Saturday morning.

Crewmembers were pulled from the water by good Samaritan fishing vessel SEA BALLAD, then transferred to the Coast Guard 47-foot Motor Life Boat. The STAR KING crew were then transported to Ilwaco, Washington by Coast Guard personnel. No crewmembers required medical attention.

Watchstanders at the Sector Columbia River command center received the first mayday call at 4:31 a.m. It was reported that the vessel was taking on water and listing hard to starboard before capsizing and sending all five fishermen into the water. All crewmembers were accounted for by 5:10 a.m.

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A father and son, identified as 75-year-old Larry Roger McWilliams and 48-year-old Gary Roger McWilliams, died Monday, May 30th, after their fishing boat overturned in Glacier Bay National Park. The cause of the vessel capsize remains a mystery, as the weather was clear and calm at the time of the incident.

Four addition passengers aboard the privately-owned, 21-foot aluminum vessel made it to safety. Tom VandenBerg, who was aboard the vessel at the time of capsize, reported that a fellow passenger swam to a nearby island and flagged down a passing boat. He credited this effort as the sole reason that the four survived.

The fishing boat overturned about 10 miles from park headquarters, and officials swiftly dispatched large and small search vessels to the site after receiving word of the incident. Two passengers were found by charter boat operator, Jim Kerns, while others remained in the water. The crew of a tour vessel, the Wilderness Discoverer, pulled the father and son from the water to perform CPR, but were unable to revive the two.

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April 18, 2016

Three fishermen have been rescued from the water at Makah Bay following the capsizing of their fishing vessel. The vessel was able to radio a Mayday message via VFH radio to the Coast Guard before the vessel capsized.  The three men were wearing lifejackets and sitting on top of the overturned vessel when the 47-foot Coast Guard life boat arrived on the scene.   The accident involved a small 21-foot fishing vessel.  The men were transported to the Coast Guard Station at Neah Bay.  One man was treated for hypothermia following the incident.

Vessels big and small must always be prepared for an emergency. Having proper safety equipment aboard your boat that is available to quickly be used may mean the difference between surviving and not surviving a sudden accident such as this.  Today VFH radios are relatively inexpensive and, as this case proves, well worth the investment when disaster suddenly strikes your vessel.   It is a well recognized statistic in sinking and capsizing cases that your chances of survival are far higher if you are wearing a life jacket.

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A couple beachcombing near Paradise Point in Port Orford, Oregon saw a small recreational fishing boat caught between large ocean swells and crashing surf on Sunday, January 25. Suddenly the 24′ boat flipped over, dumping the three passengers into the water. Michael Fowler, 38, and Ariana Hall, 19, who was wearing a life vest, struggled through the surf to get to shore. The third passenger, Albert Self, 37, yelled for help in the ocean surf. All three lived in Port Orford, Oregon.

The beachcombing couple, Jim and Medette Hayman, immediately called 911 at 1:45 pm and rushed to help Fowler and Hall to safety. Other beachcombers also ran to assist. No one could reach Self before he disappeared in the water. It is believed he was not wearing a life vest.

The Coast Guard responded as well as members of the Coos County Sheriff’s Office and other local law enforcement. Crews searched for Self for nine hours, covering more than 169 miles without finding him.

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On August 31, 2014, the Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound received a mayday call from a good Samaritan who found a capsized boat with 8 people, 7 adults and a child, in distress. The good Samaritan was able to pull up the 3 people in the water, while the rest clung to the side of his vessel.

A 45-foot response boat soon came and recovered the rest of the stranded passengers, bringing them all to Bainbridge Island, afterwards towing the capsized vessel to Eagle Harbor.

Mike Allen, the search and rescue coordinator at the Coast Guard’s Puget Sound Sector, credits the preparedness and response of the good Samaritan as being instrumental in the rescue. ‘Had he not come upon them, the current could have carried them out further and the situation could have become much worse,’ he was quoted as saying.

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A boat capsized near the Yaquina Bay Coast Guard Station on July 3, 2014, putting three people in the water. The boat capsized after running into the wake of another vessel, and was seen by Lt. Robert Ornelas, commanding officer of the Yaquina Bay Station.
Both a small response boat and a 47-foot Motor Life Boat responded within minutes of the accident and rescued the three individuals out of the water, before there was even a chance for anyone to make a rescue call.
The Coast Guard was able to turn over the upside down vessel and tow it to the Newport Marina. None of the three people in the boat were wearing life jackets, but were not hurt. Lt. Ornelas warned against having a false sense of safety when the sun is out and the water is calm, as the water temperature and hypothermia are still dangerous.

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On May 18, moments after she touched water in her very first launch, 85-foot, $10 million M/V BADEN capsized on her port side and began to sink.

The launch came after more than two years of pain-staking at Northern Marine Industries to build this beautifully appointed expedition style vessel. She was rolled out to the Fidalgo Bay Marina in Anacortes, Washington, christened, and began her short, sad journey into the drink.

At one point during the launch, she seemed to shift in her cradle, but no problem could be found, and the launch proceeded. There were about six people on board at the time, some of whom had gone down below to adjust the ballast at the first signs of instability. Unfortunately, there was nothing they could do as she took on water. All who were on board besides one man were rescued fairly quickly, but that one man was trapped below decks until one of the officers took a fire ax to a port hole and pulled him out. No one was seriously injured, although the man who’d been trapped suffered scrapes and bruises from his ordeal, and felt lucky to have been rescued.

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One man is dead and another is seriously injured after the vessel they were traveling in capsized Saturday, July 16, in outer Boston Harbor, Mass. According to State Police spokesman David Procopio, the 30-foot vessel HIGH LIFE “broke apart and capsized for reasons still under investigation,” launching both passengers into the water. Neither passenger was wearing a life jacket. The boaters were identified as Michael Spirito, 58, and Robert Fox, 63.

Coast Guard Sector Boston was notified of the capsizing around 6:15 Saturday evening, and responded to the call immediately, along with the Boston Fire Department, the State Police, and the Environmental Police. The victims, who had severe chest and head injuries, were pulled from the water and taken to shore where emergency medical services were waiting. Spirito had been pronounced dead, and Fox was rushed to a Boston area hospital by a helicopter crew for his life-threatening injuries. Fox was listed in critical condition as of Monday, July 18.

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Coast Guard Sector New Orleans watchstanders received notification Tuesday July 12, that the 36-foot fishing vessel LOONEY TUNA was taking on water and had capsized. Three of the six on board reportedly suffered injuries. The Coast Guard launched two helicopter rescue crews and one boat crew to the scene, where they successfully hoisted the three injured fishermen and transported them to a nearby hospital. The rescue boat and crew safely transported the other three fishermen to shore, where emergency medical services awaited their arrival.

The Coast Guard stresses the importance of having marine-band radios, emergency position indicating radio beacons, life jackets and signaling devices on board. Having this sort of equipment on board allowed the crew of the LOONEY TUNA to make a call requesting help.