Coast Guard Assists in Rescue 345 Miles off Coast

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – Coast Guard watch standers at the Rescue Coordination Center Portsmouth coordinated the rescue of a sailor 345 miles east of Cape Henry, Va., today.

Douglas W. Eaton, captain of the 20-foot sailing vessel Tyche homeported in Key West, Fla., was rescued by the crew of the cruise ship Crown Princess after the Coast Guard received an Electronic Locater Transmitter (ELT) signal from Eaton this afternoon.

The Crown Princess, a 947-foot Bahamian-flagged cruise ship, is designated as an Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue (AMVER) vessel.

“We got a great response from the AMVER vessels in the area,” said Coast Guard Lt. j.g. Scott Murphy, who said several AMVER vessels in the area also answered the Coast Guard’s call for assistance.

Eaton will stay on board the Crown Princess until its next port of call in New York City.

AMVER, sponsored by the United States Coast Guard, is a unique, computer-based and voluntary global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea. With AMVER rescue coordinators can identify participating ships in the area of distress and divert the best-suited ship or ships to respond.

AMVER’s mission is to quickly provide search and rescue authorities, on-demand, accurate information on the positions and characteristics of vessels near a reported distress.

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