Coast Guard medevacs cruise ship crewmember near St. Croix

The crew of a Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen MH-65 Dolphin Helicopter assists a Filipino crewmember medevaced earlier from the Marella Explorer 2 cruise ship approximately 50 nautical miles southeast of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands Nov. 26 2019. The crewmember was transferred to Emergency Medical Services personnel in Saint Croix, who transported the patient to the Juan F. Luis Hospital for a higher level of medical care.

The crew of a Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen MH-65 Dolphin helicopter assists a cruise ship crewmember medevaced earlier from the cruise ship  Marella Explorer, approximately 50 nautical miles southeast of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands Nov. 26 2019.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – The crew of a Coast Guard helicopter medevaced a 29-year-old crewmember from the cruise ship Marella Explorer 2 Tuesday, approximately 50 nautical miles southeast of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Coast Guard watchstanders received medevac request from the Marella Explorer 2 at 10:47 p.m. Monday, after one of their crewmembers experienced a heart attack and required immediate medical attention ashore.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector San Juan dispatched a crew aboard a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen to conduct the medevac. The rescue helicopter arrived on scene and the crew deployed their rescue swimmer to assess the patient’s condition. The cruise ship crewmember was hoisted aboard the aircraft and transported to St. Croix, where they were received by awaiting Emergency Medical Services personnel, who transported the patient by ambulance to the Juan F. Luis Hospital.


“All players involved during this case performed admirably, especially during a moonless, low illumination evening on night vision goggles,” said Lt. j.g. Travis Cox, MH-65 Dolphin helicopter co-pilot for the medevac. “The training of the helicopter crew, along with the outstanding adaptability of Sector San Juan, St. Croix EMS, and the crew of Marella Explorer 2 allowed smooth execution of this medevac.”

The cruise ship was transiting from Bridegetown, Barbados to Tortola, British Virgin Islands, when the incident was reported to the Coast Guard.


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