Good Samaritans hlep to rescue 2 overdue fishermen west of Rincón, Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Good Samaritans responding to a Coast Guard Urgent Marine Information Broadcast rescued two overdue fishermen Sunday in waters approximately 12 nautical miles west of Rincón, Puerto Rico.

Rescued are Héctor Martínez, 50, and César Torres, 65, residents of Aguada, Puerto Rico, who went out from Aguada on a fishing trip to the Los Rabos fishing grounds at 4a.m. Saturday and were expected to return by 4p.m. Saturday, but they never arrived.

Coast Guard watchstanders in the Sector San Juan were initially contacted at 10:45p.m. Saturday by Puerto Rico Police Joint Forces of Rapid Action F.U.R.A. personnel, who reported incident.

Coast Guard watchstanders transmitted an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast advising mariners in the area to be on the lookout for the overdue fishermen, and they diverted the Coast Guard Guard Cutter Chincoteague and launched an Air Station Borinquen MH-65 Dolphin helicopter to search.

Coast Guard watchstanders were contacted at 10:24 a.m. Sunday via marine radio on VHF-Channel 16 by Good Samaritans, Jesus González and Eric Coseigo, aboard the fishing vessel Fuakata, who reported they had located the missing fishermen aboard their 16-foot fishing vessel disabled and adrift, approximately 12 nautical miles west of Rincón, Puerto Rico.

The overdue fishermen were found to be in good health and were safely towed by the Good Samaritan vessel Fuakata to Rincón, Puerto Rico, Sunday afternoon.

“This is a great case of mariners coming to the aid of others,” said Lt. Gerard Wenk, Sector San Juan Command Duty Officer. “The Good Samaritans in this case payed close attention and responded to the Urgent Marine Information Broadcasts being transmitted by the Coast Guard and they made proper use of VHF-Channel 16 to call in the distress.”

VHF Channel-16 marine radio transmissions have traditionally been the international maritime distress frequency, monitored by search and rescue authorities.

Coast Guard Cutter Chincoteague is a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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