The Coast Guard received a call at 8:25 p.m. Sunday via landline that two men were stranded on a marsh after the sailing vessel Leo II became disabled due to mechanical issues.
A Coast Guard MH-65 dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City responded to the distress call.
The helicopter crew hoisted the two men and transported them to the Cape May Airport in Cape May, New Jersey with no reported injuries.
“Thankfully these mariners had both working communications and signaling devices,” said Lt. j.g. Matthew Kolb, the co-pilot on the case. “They were able to call for help on a cell phone, which ensured quick dispatch of the helicopter crew leading to a timely rescue. Using our night-vision goggles we were able to easily see their emergency flare, and expeditiously locate and recover the cold sailors.”
The Coast Guard recommends mariners to carry a working VHF radio, life jackets and signaling devices prior to beginning their voyage. VHF radios have a greater range than cell phones, and provide a direct link to Coast Guard watchstanders.
The owner of the sailing vessel stated he plans to salvage the vessel.