Coast Guard watchstanders coordinate rescue of disabled mariner

Hawaii-Pacific Coast Guard NewsHONOLULU – The Coast Guard is coordinating the rescue of a mariner in distress approximately 287 miles northeast of Hilo, Hawaii, Friday.

Watchstanders at Joint Rescue Coordination Center Honolulu received an email report from an Amigo Net Ham radio operator that a mariner aboard the Australian-flagged sailing vessel Q-Wave was disabled and requesting assistance. The mariner had less than one liter of water and no food. The vessel’s motor was disabled, it had lost its dingy, its communications equipment was unreliable and it had sustained a tear in its mainsail.

A Coast Guard aircrew piloting an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, Oahu, was launched and located the disabled vessel. The crew dropped emergency supplies, including food, water and a VHF radio to the disabled sailboat. The Good Samaritan vessel Fifth Wife was in the area, overheard communications with the disabled vessel and responded to escort the vessel to Hilo.

The Coast Guard’s 14th District operates out of the Hawaiian Islands, the most isolated archipelago in the world, with an area of responsibility covering more than 12.2 million square miles. The Coast Guard recommends all marines ensure they are properly equipped for voyages to include provisions and safety equipment.

The Coast Guard is presently upgrading its Hercules airplanes, a process that will greatly enhance the services capabilities as America’s maritime first responder. These upgrades will increase long range capabilities, allowing rescue, law enforcement and response crews to travel further and faster.

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