Coast Guard medevacs woman from cruise ship Norwegian Breakaway off NC

A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and C-130 Hercules aircraft

Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and C-130 Hercules aircraft file photo

WILMINGTON, N.C. – A Coast Guard aircrew medevaced a 62-year-old woman suffering from gastrointestinal bleeding off of a cruise ship approximately 126 miles southeast of Cape Lookout, North Carolina, Wednesday.

A crewmember, aboard the cruise ship Norwegian Breakaway, used a satellite phone to contact watchstanders at the Fifth District Command Center in Portsmouth, Virginia, at 8:40 p.m., to request assistance for the woman.

Aircrews aboard an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City were dispatched to assist the woman. The helicopter aircrew hoisted the woman and a nurse to the rescue helicopter and transported them to New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington.

“Letting the Coast Guard know of these situations as soon as possible is vital,” said Geoffrey Pagels, the command duty officer at the command center. “Distance and environment greatly affect response time and the survivability of a person in distress. The crew did a great job of communicating with us in a timely manner.”

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