Good Samaritans assist Coast Guard, rescue eight during weekend in Resurrection Bay

17th Coast Guard District News
KODIAK, Alaska – Good Samaritan crews assisted the Coast Guard in rescuing eight people in two seperate cases in Resurrection Bay Sunday.

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage command center watchstanders overheard a call on VHF-FM channel 16 from the crew of the 29-foot pleasure craft Striper reporting the vessel was taking on water through a two-foot crack in the starboard quarter with four people aboard at about 2:20 p.m. and were requesting the assistance of another vessel. They were located Cheval Passage near Harding Gateway.

“The good Samaritan pleasure craft Da Boat and crew responded to the Striper and escorted the vessel to Seward,” said Steve Garcia, a Sector Anchorage command center search and rescue operations controller. “The Striper was safely moored at about 5 p.m.”

At about 5:10 p.m. Sector Anchorage command center watchstanders received a call on VHF-FM channel 16 from the crew of the 30-foot pleasure craft Squirrel reporting they were disabled in the water due to engine problems about 10 miles south of Seward with two adults and a child aboard.

The crew of an unamed good Samaritan vessel responded to a Marine Assistance Request Broadcast issued by the watchstanders. The good Samaritan crew towed the Squirrel and crew safely to Seward. The Squirrel was moored at about 6:45 p.m.

Crews of good Samaritan vessels are often the first to arrive on scene and are critical in saving lives, especially in Alaska with its vast coastline and limited search and rescue facilities. For centuries sailors have voluntarily assisted others in distress. This maritime rescue doctrine encourages seafarers to go to the aid of life and property in distress. Federal Statute, 46 USC 2304, requires a master to render assistance if the master can do so without serious danger to master’s vessel or individuals aboard.

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