Coast Guard responds to downed plane off Gloucester

BOSTON — Coast Guard rescue crews responded to a pilot whose plane crashed approximately 12 nautical miles east of miles of Gloucester, Mass., Friday.

The aircraft was serving as a spot plane for tuna for the fishing vessel Christina when it went down.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Boston received notification of the crash at 4:49 p.m. and contacted Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod and Coast Guard Station Gloucester.

Air Station Cape Cod immediately launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and a HU-25 Falcon jet. Station Gloucester launched a 47-foot Motor Life Boat.

The Falcon jet arrived on scene at and located the pilot in the liferaft, which was attached to the tail of the plane. The fishing vessel Christina recovered the pilot and transported him back to Cape Ann. The Motor Life Boat from Station Gloucester escorted the Christina back to port.

“This is a classic case of why pilots file a flight plan in case something goes wrong,” said Lt. j.g. Mike Barker, the command duty officer at Sector Boston. “He logged a plan and the vessel he was fishing with knew where to look so they could find him.

As America’s maritime first responder, the Coast Guard is responsible for coordinating rescues for incidents at sea, including aircraft emergencies.

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