An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles hoisted the men and transported them safely to Paine Field in Snohomish County.
Dispatchers from 911 transferred a call for help to watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound at 1:25 p.m. Sector watchstanders issued a Marine Assistance Request Broadcast and contacted other local agencies to tow the vessel, but none were able to respond due to shallow water. The aircrew launched in response and arrived on scene at 8:10 p.m.
No injuries were reported, but responders were concerned about the risk of hypothermia due to cold weather. The men reportedly had no cold weather survival gear on board aside from one blanket, which was already wet from rain.
“Proper vessel maintenance and preparation are key to survival in winter weather,” said Petty Officer First Class Mario Roy, a watchstander at Sector Puget Sound who helped coordinate the case. “If anybody is going out on the water this winter, they should always be ready for the worst case scenario by taking extra food, drinks, blankets and survival gear.”
The men reportedly made the call for help using a cell phone. Smartphone users can download the Coast Guard Boating Safety Mobile App for free access to safety information and even request assistance in emergency situations. For more information,visit http://ift.tt/1G6Ne97.
The weather at the time of the hoist was reported to be raining with an air temperature of 38 degrees and 16 mph winds.