LOS ANGELES — The Coast Guard have suspended their search for a 22-year-old male near Catalina Island.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach received notification from a boater aboard a 15-foot skiff near China Point, stating that a rogue wave had caused both passengers to fall into the water.
Neither boater was reported to be wearing a lifejacket. One passenger was able to safely make his way back to the vessel where he contacted the Coast Guard. He stated that he was experiencing a medical emergency and the other boater who entered the water had not yet surfaced.
The Coast Guard immediately launched a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Forward Operating Base Point Mugu and a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew from Coast Guard Station Los Angeles-Long Beach. Members of Baywatch Avalon, Baywatch Isthmus, Baywatch Cabrillo, Los Angeles County Fire Section 2, Los Angeles County Fire Section 5, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Avalon, and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Air 5 also assisted in the search.
The Coast Guard urges mariners to always:
- Stay Informed – The public should be aware of weather conditions and monitor the progress and strength of any storms through local television, radio and Internet. Check the current and expected weather and water conditions before heading out, and be aware that weather conditions can quickly change.
- Wear life jackets while on the water.
- File a float plan with friends, family members and local marinas before heading out. The list should include the number of passengers aboard the vessel, destination and expected time of return.
- Always have a working marine-band radio on board.
- Carry marine flares on board the vessel.
- Ensure bilge pumps are operational and vessels are secure for heavy winds and rain.
For more information on boating safety, visit www.uscgboating.org.
The missing individual was reported to be last seen wearing a black sweatshirt and black pants. If anyone has information on the location of the missing boater, please contact the Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach Command Center at (310) 521-3801.