Coast Guard rescues 1 mariner aboard disabled vessel in Bellingham Bay

A 27-foot crab boat sits disabled and adrift in the shoals of Bellingham Bay, December 31, 2016. A Coast Guard Station Bellingham rescue boat crew aboard a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium responded to the incident and safely removed the mariner from his vessel. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Station Bellingham.)

A 27-foot crab boat sits disabled and adrift in the shoals of Bellingham Bay, December 31, 2016.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Station Bellingham.)

SEATTLE — The Coast Guard rescued one mariner aboard a disabled vessel after he become disoriented in Bellingham Bay, Saturday.

Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound command center received a report from Station Bellingham of the disabled and adrift 27-foot crab in the shoals of Bellingham Bay with one person aboard at 3:05 p.m.

The mariner was unable to give his exact position but was quickly located after Sector personnel tracked his location using his cell phone GPS signal.

A Coast Guard Station Bellingham rescue boat crew aboard a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium responded to the incident and safely removed the mariner from his vessel at 4:13 p.m.

The mariner was reported to be in good condition and did not seek medical attention.

“The Coast Guard encourages mariners to carry a VHF-FM radio aboard their vessels,” said Don Knesebeck, a command duty officer at Coast Guard 13th District Command Center. “Even if cell phones have a GPS transmitter, tracking down a cell phone is an involved process. Calling 911 with a cell phone should not be ruled out in case of an emergency but using a radio for distress calls is the best possible way to get the help you need, faster.”

The weather at the time of the rescue was 4-6 foot waves and 25-knot winds.

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