Coast Guard rescues man, his dog 30 miles off Horseshoe Beach

Jim Baxter, 50, and his dog, Freddy, sit on the bow of a Coast Guard Station Yankeetown 27-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water boat 30 miles west of Horseshoe Beach, Florida, Thursday, April 27, 2017. Baxter and Freddy were rescued after their 27-foot sailboat’s rudder broke during a three-day voyage rendering the boat disabled. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Jason Andrade)

Jim Baxter, 50, and his dog, Freddy, sit on the bow of a Coast Guard Station Yankeetown 27-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water boat Thursday, April 27, 2017. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Jason Andrade)

YANKEETOWN, Fla. — The Coast Guard rescued a 50-year-old man and his dog Thursday after the man’s sailboat became disabled near Horseshoe Beach.

Rescued was Jim Baxter, 50.

At 11:25 a.m. Thursday, watch standers at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg received notification from Baxter via VHF-FM marine band radio channel 16 stating he was low on water and his 27-foot sailboat, Kittywake, was disabled. Baxter stated he was out at sea for three days.

A 27-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water boat crew from Coast Guard Station Yankeetown launched to assist.

The boat crew arrived on scene at 4 p.m and rescued Baxter and his dog, Freddy. The boat crew placed a beacon on the disabled sailboat to alert mariners transiting the area and transported Baxter and Freddy to Sea Hag Marina in Steinhatchee.

No injuries were reported.

“Mariners should always file a float plan with a responsible person and ensure they have some type of communication capability during their voyage,” said Kevin Coyne, command duty officer at Sector St. Petersburg. “When a planned voyage takes a vessel outside of cell phone coverage and VHF-FM marine band radio coverage, the captain needs to ensure they have an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon or satellite phone to alert authorities if they encounter a serious problem.”

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