Coast Guard medevacs child 250 miles east of Bermuda

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. – Coast Guard crews medically evacuated a 5-year-old boy and his parents Monday afternoon from an oil tanker approximately 250 nautical miles east of Bermuda.

The crew of the tank ship Axel Spirit called Rescue Coordination Center Bermuda Sunday and reported that a boy onboard was experiencing symptoms of appendicitis and needed help. After coordinating with Rescue Coordination Center Norfolk, Va., a Coast Guard flight surgeon determined that his symptoms were severe enough to require immediate medical attention.

The RCC Norfolk watchstanders looked for vessels participating in the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System, or AMVER vessels, but there were no ships in the area that could provide the appropriate care. Due to the tanker's distance from land, an Air Station Elizabeth City MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter crew had to be pre-staged in Bermuda Sunday in order to rescue the boy Monday when the ship was within range. One of Elizabeth City's HC-130J Hercules aircraft crews flew over the helicopter as they hoisted the people aboard to provide oversight and communications at such a far distance from land.

They were met by local EMS in Bermuda and the boy was taken to King Edward VII Memorial Hospital there.

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