Coast Guard Cutter Bluefin rescues 2 people who abandoned sinking boat

MIAMI — Two local mariners were rescued Tuesday afternoon after they abandoned their 38-foot boat 13 nautical miles east of Boca Raton, Florida.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Miami received a call via VHF radio from one of the passengers aboard the pleasure craft Doctors Orders stating their vessel was taking on water rapidly and they required assistance. The men then embarked their life raft prior to the vessel sinking.

Sector Miami issued a Urgent Marine Information Broadcast and immediately launched a Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew, diverted the Coast Guard Cutter Bluefin, and diverted a U.S. Navy MH-60 aircraft that was patrolling nearby. The Navy MH-60 was first to arrive on scene and reported two individuals in a grey life raft.

The Coast Guard Cutter Bluefin arrived on scene and embarked the two men who were later transferred onto a Coast Guard 45-foot Response Boat-Medium. The pair was transported to Silver Palms Marina in Boca Raton where emergency medical services awaited for evaluation.

“This case highlights the importance of having proper life saving and communication equipment aboard for emergencies,” said Lt. cmdr. Gabe Somma, Coast Guard Seventh District public affairs officer. “This incident could have ended tragically had these boaters not been properly prepared.”

Recently released statistics from 2012 show that Florida tops the list of states for recreational boating accidents at 662 and boating related deaths at 50.

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