Coast Guard rescues 2 missing divers off Sebastian Inlet, Fla.

7th Coast Guard District NewsMIAMI — The Coast Guard rescued two missing divers Friday afternoon approximately 10 miles east of Sebastian Inlet, Fla.

The divers became separated from their boat and were drifting for more than five hours before being located by a helicopter crew from Coast Guard  Air Station Clearwater, Fla.

The Coast Guard received notification at 12:30 p.m. Friday from the dive vessel Bangstick that two divers who went down at 9:40 a.m. were overdue in their resurfacing by about an hour. The Coast Guard immediately launched multiple assets to search by sea and air.

The divers were spearfishing when they became separated from their vessel, and drifted approximately four miles south of the dive boat’s location.

A Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater helicopter crew spotted the two missing divers, deployed their rescue swimmer, and vectored in a boatcrew from Coast Guard Station Fort Pierce, Fla., to retrieve the divers from the water.

Once medically cleared, the divers were transported back to the dive vessel Bangstick.

Also assisting in the case were:

  • A Coast Guard Air Station Miami airplane crew
  • A Coast Guard Station Port Canaveral, Fla., boatcrew
  • Two boatcrews from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  • A boatcrew from Indian River County
  • A Brevard County helicopter crew

 

“The Coast Guard cannot stress enough the importance of safety at sea,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Stefan Overton, search and rescue controller, Coast Guard Sector Miami. “The precautions taken by these divers to equip themselves with an inflatable device, as well as a signaling device, significantly increased their chances for survival and for being spotted by rescue crews. We worked closely with our state and local partner agencies during this search and rescue case, and we are extremely pleased to have found these individuals alive and well.”

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