3 rescued, 1 dead after boat capsizes

Coast Guard District 1 NewsBOSTON — Three people are safe and one has been pronounced dead after their 24-foot pleasure boat began taking on water and capsized about five miles east of Cape Porpoise, Maine, Friday.

At approximately 3:10 p.m., U.S. Coast Guard Sector Northern New England command center watchstanders received a mayday call via VHF-FM radio channel 16 from the master of the Job Site 2, reporting they were taking on water and could not keep up with the flooding with the hand pump they had on board.

Sector watchstanders issued an urgent marine broadcast, alerting mariners in the area and requesting their assistance. The watchstanders also dispatched a 25-foot Response Boat-Small crew from Coast Guard Station South Portland, a 47-foot Motor Lifeboat crew from Coast Guard Station Portsmouth Harbor, the 210-foot Coast Guard Cutter Dependable, and an HU-25 Falcon jet and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod.

The four boaters put on their life jackets and survival suits and told the watchstanders the boat was capsizing and they were entering the water. The watchstanders then lost all communication with the boaters.

The 48-foot yacht Lady Erica and a fishing vessel in the area heard the marine broadcast and responded. The Lady Erica recovered three people from the 63-degree water. Two of the men were mildly hypothermic and responsive, but one other was unresponsive. The yacht crew began trying to resuscitate the man.

The Dependable launched their small boat and transferred their corpsman onto the yacht to assist the yacht crew with the unresponsive boater. The man was later pronounced dead by a coroner.

“We are saddened by the loss of one of the passengers during this unfortunate incident,” said Lt. Nick Barrow, the command center supervisor at Sector Northern New England. “Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”

The fishing boat crew rescued the master of the Job Site 2 responsive from the hull of the overturned boat. The master was then transferred to the Dependable’s small boat who took him to Kennebunkport, Maine.

The yacht took the other three boaters and corpsman to Kennebunkport where they were met by waiting EMS.

“Fortunately, the boat operator was able to clearly communicate their distress, position and amount of people aboard to the Coast Guard using their marine radio before the vessel capsized and we lost contact with them,” said Barrow. “We are also grateful to the crew of the Lady Erica and another good Samaritan fishing vessel, who quickly responded after hearing the Coast Guard’s emergency broadcast, recovering the men from the cold water and transporting them ashore.”

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