Coast Guard crewmembers injured as smallboat rolls during training mission

U.S. Coast Guard file photo

CLEVELAND – Two Coast Guard 47-foot Motor Life Boats (MLB)s were underway on Lake Ontario for heavy weather training when one of the vessels rolled more than 90 degrees about a half mile north of Oswego Harbor Wednesday.

Following the accident at about 3:30 p.m., the vessel was driven back to the station, where the crewmembers were evaluated by emergency medical services.

Of the five crewmembers, two were taken to local hospitals via ambulance while the rest were evaluated and released. One crewmember sustained a head wound and was admitted to Upstate Medical University, a trauma center in Syracuse, N.Y., where he remains for observations. Another crewmember sustained a shoulder injury, was transported to Oswego Hospital and was released Wednesday evening.

The 47-foot MLB was underway on Lake Ontario with an additional Coast Guard Station Oswego MLB for heavy weather training necessary to qualify members for heavy weather responses and was underway for about 30 minutes when the accident occurred.

The weather when the vessels departed the station was reported to be 30-mph wind gusts and 12-14 foot waves, both within the MLB’s operating parameters of 30-foot waves and 57-mph winds.

The extent of the boat’s damage and the cause of the accident are under investigation.

The station has an additional 47-foot MLB and a 25-foot response boat to respond to maritime threats and emergencies.

“An accident of this nature shows the great danger that our Coast Guard men and women endure every day to safeguard the people of the Great Lakes,” said Capt. Robert Burchell, commanding officer of Coast Guard Sector Buffalo, N.Y., Station Oswego’s parent command. “We’re all praying for their speedy recovery.”

If you have any problems viewing this article, please report it here.