Cutter Bainbridge Island tows fishing vessel South of Shinnecock

New York – The Sandy Hook, N.J., based Coast Guard Cutter Bainbridge Island crew towed the fishing vessel CindiSea toward Shinnecock, N.Y., early this morning after the CindiSea suffered an engine room fire that damaged its generator and rendered the vessel disabled about 40 miles south of Shinnecock, N.Y., Thursday night.

The Montauk based 75-foot CindiSea reported the fire and the inoperable generator at 9:15 p.m. Thursday. The three-man CindiSea crew quickly extingushed the fire, but without a generator to power the ship, it became dead in the water in seven foot seas. The CindiSea was able to operate the radio on battery power for a short time.

The 110-foot Coast Guard Cutter Bainbridge Island was immediately diverted from a routine patrol about 70 miles away and arrived on scene with CindiSea at 1:36 a.m. The Bainbridge Island crew established a tow by 4:18 a.m. and both vessels made their way to Shinnecock. The vessels met with Sea Tow about 1 mile from the Shinnecock Light at 10:45 a.m. Sea Tow assumed the tow of the CindiSea into the Shinnecock Inlet.

A Coast Guard Station Shinnecock crew is currently conducting a routine post-rescue inspection aboard the Cindi Sea in Shinnecock.

“A fire on board a ship offshore is perhaps the scariest thing that could happen to any crew, but to also lose power and having to wait for rescue must have been quite harrowing,” said John Olsen, a search and rescue control operator at Sector Long Island Sound. “Fortunately, the Coast Guard Cutter Bainbridge Island is a swift patrol boat and was able to quickly ride 70 miles to render assistance.”

The Coast Guard was able to monitor the position of the vessel using the new Rescue-21 radio system prior to the vessel losing battery power. Rescue 21 revolutionizes how the Coast Guard uses command, control, and communications for all missions within the coastal zone.

The system:

  • incorporates direction-finding equipment to improve locating mariners in distress
  • improves interoperability amongst federal, state, and local agencies
  • enhances clarity of distress calls
  • allows simultaneous channel monitoring
  • upgrades playback and recording feature of distress calls
  • reduces coverage gaps for coastal communications and along navigable rivers and waterways
  • supports Digital Selective Calling for registered users
  • provides portable towers for restoration of communications during emergencies or natural disasters

For more information on Rescue 21 visit: http://www.uscg.mil/rescue21/home/

There were no reports of injuries.

The sea state is five to seven feet with 23 miles per hour winds.

The CindiSea rendered assistance as a Good Samaritan vessel Jan. 3, 2006, in the rescue of three people from a capsized vessel.

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