Coast Guard rescues 6 boaters stranded on Chichigof Island near Sitka, Alaska

JUNEAU, Alaska — A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka, Alaska, MH-60 Jayhawk aircrew rescued six boaters who were stranded on Chichigof Island near Sitka,, Tuesday.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau watchstanders received a report that the boaters had not returned to Pelican after their day trip to a cabin on Chichigof Island, Monday. Watchstanders requested the launch of a Jayhawk crew to search for the overdue boaters.

The boaters were located in the cabin by the aircrew. After engine problems and inclement weather, the boaters were unable to make the return trip to Pelican. The air crew transported five of the boaters back to Pelican. The boat’s owner chose to remain at the cabin until the weather improves. The aircrew provided the owner with additional food and water before departing.

“Alaska’s ever-changing weather can quickly turn a day trip into an overnighter,” said Lt. Cmdr. John M. Leach, a pilot at the air station. “No matter how short your voyage, it is always a good idea to pack extra food and water and communication devices.”

Weather on scene consisted of 13-foot seas and 28-mph winds.

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