VIDEO: Every boater’s worst day

Published on September 11th, 2020

Fisherman Island is the southernmost island on the Delmarva Peninsula chain of barrier islands, located at the entrance to the Chesapeake Bay and across from Virginia Beach, VA. It is also alongside where the U.S. Coast Guard assisted a stranded mariner on September 10, 2020.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Virginia Command Center received a call from Sea Tow that a mariner on a disabled 22-foot sailing vessel appeared distressed and required assistance. A crew from Coast Guard Station Cape Charles launched a 45-foot Response Boat — Medium, and Virginia Beach EMS Marine Rescue Team also launched a shallow surface craft to assist.

Once on scene, the Coast Guard found the sailing vessel anchored in the shallow water of Smith Island Inlet near Fisherman’s Island. Neither responding vessels were able to get close enough to establish communications with the mariner. Sector Virginia watchstanders launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Elizabeth City, who lowered a radio down to the sailing vessel.

Upon determining that the mariner’s situation was likely to get worse, the aircrew hoisted the mariner off his vessel and transported him to the air station. No medical assistance was required.

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