Coast Guard searching for 6 in Galveston Bay

HOUSTON – The Coast Guard is searching for six people who went missing in Galveston Bay, Texas, this evening.

A watchstander at Coast Guard Sector Houston/Galveston received a call at 7 p.m. from the Kemah Fire Department, reporting that a 21-foot boat had run aground.

Coast Guard Air Station Houston launched a HH-65C Dolphin helicopter crew and Station Galveston dispatched a rescue boat crew to search.

The boaters began the day on two separate boats but after experiencing engine troubles, all six climbed onboard one boat. One of the people was able to use a cell phone to call their son and had him relay a distress call to the fire department.

The Coast Guard strongly urges boaters to take the necessary precautions before heading out on the water. A few important safety tips are:

* Be aware of weather and water conditions.
* Carry a VHF radio – these radios allow for any boater in your vicinity to hear your call and the signal can be easily traced by the Coast Guard.
* Wear Coast Guard approved lifejackets.
* File a float plan to let others know where you are going, and make sure they know what to do and who to call in case of an emergency.

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