Coast Guard assists Canadians with sinking boat

CLEVELAND – U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Detroit assisted the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary with two Canadian males aboard a 20-foot Searay taking on water approximately a half-mile offshore Port Glasgow, Ontario, Sunday at approximately 10 p.m.

“When we arrived on scene, we lowered a rescue swimmer on board the men’s boat with a pump. Having him on board made them feel comfortable,” said Lt. Cmdr. Gary Naus, Air Station Detroit, HH-65C pilot.

A Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary boat crew towed the sinking Searay with the two men, their dog and rescue swimmer, Aviation Survival Technician 3rd Class Phil Gomez, to a dock on shore in Port Glasgow.

“They were getting out of the boat with the rescue swimmer and the dog, and then the boat flipped,” said Naus.

The 31-year-old and 19-year-old men from Rodney, Ontario were able to get safely on board the Canadian Auxiliary boat, while Gomez grabbed the dog by the collar, retrieving it out of the water.

“We typically do not put people in the water to hoist them if they can be recovered by a surface asset — which is exactly what we did here,” said Naus.

The two men embarked earlier in the evening from Port Glasgow to test their new Searay, when their boat began to take on water at approximately 9:30 p.m. Sunday.

The Coast Guard worked closely with the Joint Rescue Coordination Center Trenton and the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary to tranwsport the trio safely to shore.

The men had no injuries or medical concerns.

The Coast Guard recommends all boaters wear lifejackets at all times, have a marine band radio and an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) on board to facilitate swift location in times of distress.

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