Coast Guard rescues 3 boaters near Pulaski, NY

CLEVELAND – The U.S. Coast Guard rescued three people after their 19-foot vessel capsized near the mouth of the Salmon River in Pulaski, N.Y., at about 9:15 this morning.

Rescue crews aboard a 47-foot Motor Life Boat (MLB) and a 25-foot Response Boat-Small (RB-S) from Coast Guard Station Oswego, N.Y., an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Detroit, and two aircraft from the Canadian coast guard responded after the boaters made a distress call via VHF-FM Channel 16 at about 8:25 a.m.

Crewmembers aboard the RB-S located and safely rescued all three people and transported them to the Port Ontario Pier, where they were taken by EMS to a local hospital.

All three people were wearing lifejackets and were showing signs of hypothermia at the time of rescue.

The owner of the vessel had a handheld, waterproof VHF radio, which facilitated communication with the Coast Guard after the vessel had capsized.

“What saved their lives today were their life jackets and radio,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Jadon Sprague, executive petty officer at Station Oswego. “If they didn’t have their life jackets on and a radio to call us, who knows what could have happened?”

The Coast Guard recommends that all people recreating on the water wear a lifejacket at all times and encourages mariners to invest in a VHF-FM marine-band radio as their primary means of communication on the water.

VHF-FM Channel 16, the international hailing and distress channel, is monitored by the Coast Guard and state marine patrols around the clock. In addition, unlike cellular phones, distress calls broadcast over VHF-FM Channel 16 will be heard by all mariners in the vicinity. Urgent safety information and weather reports for boaters are also broadcast over marine band radio channels.

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