Coast Guard Early Morning Rescue Saves Four

ALAMEDA, Calif. — The U.S. Coast Guard rescued four people early this morning after they were forced to abandon ship 12 miles southwest of Point Arena.

At approximately 1:30 a.m., Coast Guard Group Humboldt Bay received a call from four men on a sailing trip from San Francisco to Seattle, aboard the 42-foot sailboat Cherokee Rose. The caller informed the Coast Guard the men onboard were preparing to abandon ship into an emergency liferaft in 10 to 15-foot seas, due to their sailboat taking on water.

Upon notification, Sector San Francisco immediately directed the launch of a 47-foot motor lifeboat from Station Noyo River. The five person boatcrew were underway within four minutes, knowing they had a 50-mile trip ahead of them to reach the reported location of the Cherokee Rose. At the same time, an HH65 helicopter from Air Station San Francisco launched and headed north to search for the raft.

At approximately 3:50 a.m., the helicopter and motor lifeboat crews located the liferaft after the men onboard activated an emergency flare.

The helicopter crew lifted two men from the liferaft, lowering a basket and rescue swimmer. When low fuel level became a concern, the aircrew headed back toward Station Noyo River with the two rescued men onboard. The lifeboat crew continued the rescue efforts, successfullly picking up the remaining two men and recovering their liferaft. At 7:00 a.m. the crew of the lifeboat returned with the two men to Station Noyo River.

“They all appear to be in good condition this morning,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Sam Graham, Station Noyo River’s Officer of the Day; speaking of the four rescued men. “We made them breakfast this morning and it looks like they will be on their way soon.”

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