Coast Guard Rescues 2 Boaters Stranded on Desecheo Island

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – A Coast Guard helicopter rescue crew from Air Station Borinquen hoisted two boaters to safety today who were stranded on Desecheo Island, Puerto Rico.

Dany Candelara, 29, and Omar Nicholas Morales, 24, residents of Rincon, Puerto Rico, were located by the crew of an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter, who rescued them from the uninhabited island at approximately 8:50 a.m. today.

The U.S. Coast Guard Joint Rescue Sub-Center, San Juan, received an initial report from a 911 operator who reported the boater’s vessel was taking on water, approximately one and a half nautical miles north of Desecheo Island. A second call from the 911 operator revealed that the boaters were forced to swim to Desecheo, after their vessel sank approximately 10 yards from shore. Candelara and Morales were turned over to local police at Air Station Borinquen, Aguadilla, who transported them back to Rincon.

The rescued men were reported traveling aboard a 22-foot white vessel with green interior. The men were carrying marine safety gear which included personal flotation devices, however, the boat was not equipped with a marine radio and they only relied on cellular phone communications.

A Puerto Rico Police Joint Forces of Rapid Action F.U.R.A. Cobra marine unit and fixed-wing aircraft also responded and assisted the Coast Guard to search for the stranded boaters.

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