NEW YORK – Coast Guard Station Montauk and Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod assisted the commercial fishing vessel Caitlan & Mairead near Montauk Point Wednesday after their engine compartment began flooding.
At approximately 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Station Montauk contacted Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound when the Caitlan & Mairead began taking on water 26 miles south of Montauk Point. Four people were on board the vessel.
The 26-foot commercial fishing vessel had engaged a dewatering pump and kept up with the flooding as the crew attempted to get back to Montauk. No assistance was initially requested and the vessel maintained a 30 minute communication schedule with the Coast Guard.
At approximately 5:30 p.m., the crew was unable to keep up with the flooding in the engine compartment and the vessel lost power. The source of the flooding remains unknown and was contained to the engine compartment but had risen to the deck plate level.
The crew had life rafts, an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB), survival suits and flares on board. The Coast Guard ensured that all crew members donned their survival gear or personal flotation devices.
“Functionality and survivabality in cold water is about 2 hours,” said Mark Averill, a Command Duty Officer at Sector Long Island Sound. “Because of the cold weather and water temperature, it’s important to keep EPIRBs and safety equipment in good shape and up-to-date.”
Once on scene, Station Montauk and Air Station Cape Cod, transferred pumps on board the vessel and successfully dewatered the compartment.