At about 8 p.m., Saturday, watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles/Long Beach operations center, received a report of three people in the water after their 14-foot aluminum boat capsized 100 yards south east of Point Arguello. Two men successfully swam ashore, but a 46-year-old man was reported to still be missing.
The Coast Guard launched a 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from Coast Guard Station Morro Bay, a HH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Los Angeles, Coast Guard Cutter Blacktip, homeported in Channel Islands Harbor. A HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station San Diego along with surface assets from Santa Barbara County Fire Department also assisted in the search for the missing man.
The Coast Guard would like to remind boaters to:
Always wear a life jacket. Since there is little time to reach for stowed vests when accidents occur, wearing one at all times reduces your risk of drowning. Federal law requires you to have a personal floatation device on board for each passenger.
File a float plan. A float plan is simply letting family and friends know where you are going and your expected time of return. File a float plan with someone who is not getting underway with you and stick to the plan. If you change plans, contact the person. A float plan assists responders in the search of an overdue boater who may be in distress.
Have a signaling device to communicate distress on the water. Boaters should have a marine-band radio, signal flares and an emergency position-indicating radio beacon to alert first responders. Boaters can reach the Coast Guard on marine-band radios on VHF channel 16 24/7, and an EPIRB provides search-and-rescue coordinators with vital information such as phone numbers and the description and type of vessel, which allows the Coast Guard to respond much quicker.