Coast Guard medevacs injured man 115 miles south of Kodiak, Alaska

Coast Guard Alaska News
KODIAK, Alaska — A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew medevaced an injured crewmember from the 958-foot container vessel Sea Land Charger approximately 115 miles south of Kodiak Wednesday.

The Jayhawk crew rendezvoused with the Sea Land Charger and safely hoisted the 56-year-old Filipino man aboard the helicopter and transported him to awaiting commercial medevac services in Kodiak for further transport to Anchorage to receive advanced medical care.

Coast Guard 17th District command center watchstanders received a request for assistance from the master of the Sea Land Charger, relayed by Coast Guard 13th District watchstanders, at 11:05 a.m. Tuesday, when the crewmember aboard the Virginia-based Sea Land Charger reportedly fell 10 feet incurring injuries to his head and right eye. The container vessel was approximately 550 miles from Kodiak at the time of the injury.

A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew transfers an injured man to a Kodiak City Fire ambulance crew for further transfer to commercial medevac services in Kodiak, Alaska, Nov. 27, 2013. The man injured his head and right eye during a fall aboard the cargo vessel Sea Land Charger 550 miles south of Kodiak Nov. 26. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Diana Honings.

A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew transfers an injured man to a Kodiak City Fire ambulance crew for further transfer to commercial medevac services in Kodiak, Alaska, Nov. 27, 2013. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Diana Honings.

After speaking with the medical review officer aboard Sea Land Charger, the Coast Guard 17th District duty flight surgeon determined that the crewmember required a medevac and the watchstanders directed the master to alter the ship’s course toward Kodiak to bring the vessel within range of Coast Guard helicopters. The watchstanders established a six-hour communication schedule with the vessel overnight until the Sea Land Charger reached a destination agreed upon by Air Station Kodiak personnel the next morning.

The Jayhawk crew and an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew departed Kodiak at first light, arrived on scene and safely conducted the hoist. The Hercules crew provided cover, a self –rescue capability and a communications platform for the Jayhawk crew.

“The is the third medevac of an injured cargo vessel crewman we’ve conducted in recent months and these cases illustrate the importance of having well trained Coast Guard crews and hoist capable helicopters available in Kodiak to assist injured mariners,” said Lt. John Filipowicz, a Jayhawk pilot at Air Station Kodiak who was on the case. “We are uniquely suited to reach these mariners at-sea and reduce the time it takes to get them to the care they need.”

Weather on scene at the time of the incident was reported as 17 mph winds and 8-foot seas.

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