Coast Guard rescuers respond to boat taking on water near Channel Islands Harbor

CHANNEL ISLANDS, Calif – Coast Guard rescuers responded to a mayday call via VHF channel 16 from a 20-foot powerboat taking on water with three persons on board yesterday.

The call came into the Coast Guard Command Center in San Pedro, Calif. at approximately 2:30 p.m. this afternoon. A 47-foot Motor Life Boat from Coast Guard Station Channel Islands and an HH-65C “Dolphin” helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Los Angeles were dispatched to scene.

Once scene, Coast Guard rescuers commenced an escort of the distressed vessel back to the harbor. During the escort the vessel ran out fuel. The vessel was then taken under tow safely back to Channel Islands Harbor.

The boaters in this case were able to contact the Coast Guard by using their VHF marine radio via channel 16 and were quickly rescued. In addition to having a VHF marine radio on board the Coast Guard offers some additional safety tips:

Wear your life jacket. The U.S. Coast Guard estimates that life jackets could have saved the lives of over 80 percent of boating fatality victims.

Register your EPIRB. Response time is the key to survival. The sooner help arrives, the better chance you have of surviving. Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBS) provide the fastest and most accurate way the Coast Guard has of locating and rescuing persons in distress.

Have a Vessel Safety Check. It’s a great way of learning about problems that might put you in violation of state, or federal laws, or worse, create danger for you or your passengers on the water. Best of all, it’s FREE! For more information, visit

Take a boating safety course.
You can learn the basics about your vessel and the “rules of the road” in America’s Boating Course, a new electronic boating course produced through a partnership between the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and the United States Power Squadrons. For more information, visit

Never boat under the influence (BUI). Intoxicated boaters can face both federal and state charges with penalties of up to one year in prison and up to $100,000 in fines.

File a float plan. There are too many facts that need to be accurately remembered and conveyed in an emergency situation. Without a float plan you are counting on someone else, a friend, neighbor, or family member to remember detailed information that rescue personnel need in order to find you. For more information, visit

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