Coast Guard rescues 9 from overturned boat in the Cuyahoga River

25-Foot Response Boat-Small file photo by PA3 Allyson E. Taylor. USCG photo by PA3 Allyson E. Taylor

25-Foot Response Boat-Small file photo by PA3 Allyson E. Taylor.

CLEVELAND – The Coast Guard rescued nine people from a capsized rowboat in the Cuyahoga River Saturday morning.

At 9 a.m., the watchstander at Coast Guard Station Cleveland Harbor received a mayday call over marine radio emergency channel 16 from a man stating he was part of a group of rowers from a rowing school located on the river and that wake from another boat had caused the rowboat to capsize throwing the nine rowers into the water.

The man stated that he was on a small vessel following the rowers down the river and could not take all nine people to safety.

A rescue crew aboard a 25-foot response boat launched from the station and rescued all nine of the people.

All the rowers were wearing life jackets and there were no medical concerns.

“This is a perfect example of how being prepared can help you in an emergency situation,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Laura Roesch, the officer-of-the-day for Coast Guard Station Cleveland Harbor.

“They were wearing life jackets, had a way to call for help and stayed with the boat after it capsized, which are the three top things to do in this type of situation to stay alive.”

The Coast Guard rescue team took the rowers back to the school and a third boat from the school retrieved the capsized rowboat.

The Coast Guard wants to remind boaters and paddle crafter operators always wear your life jacket, have a way to call from help other than a cell phone and to be mindful of others on the water.

The Coast Guard Auxiliary 2016 Boating Statistics names operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, excessive speed and machinery failure rank as the top five primary contributing factors in accidents.

Paddlecraft, including canoes, kayaks, rowboats and stand-up-paddleboards accounted for 24% of the lives lost for 2016, second to open motorboats with 47% of deaths.

Eighty percent of boating accident victims drowned and of those, 83% were not wearing a life jacket.

Click here for a link to a paddle craft safety video from the Cuyahoga River Safety Task Force.

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