Coast Guard rescues man stranded on sailboat in Chesapeake Bay

Members of Coast Guard Station Cape Charles approach a sailboat beset by heavy weather in the Chesapeake Bay, to return its operator to shore, March 19, 2021. The man was reportedly suffering mild hypothermia symptoms and was brought to shore where he was treated by York County emergency medical services. Coast Guard photograph courtesy of Coast Guard Station Cape Charles

Members of Coast Guard Station Cape Charles approach a sailboat beset by heavy weather in the Chesapeake Bay, to return its operator to shore, March 19, 2021. Coast Guard photograph courtesy of Coast Guard Station Cape Charles

CAPE CHARLES, Va.— The Coast Guard rescued a 57 year-old man who was reportedly suffering mild hypothermia symptoms, after his sailboat was beset by severe weather approximately three miles southwest of Wolf Trap Light in the Chesapeake Bay around noon on Friday.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Virginia Command Center received the notification of the distress from the man’s sister at approximately 9:30 a.m., and issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast to local mariners.

Sector Virginia launched a 45-foot Response Boat–Medium boat crew from Station Cape Charles. The crew navigated five to six foot seas and faced sustained winds of 25 to 30 knots within the Chesapeake Bay.

The boat crew rescued the mariner from the disabled sailing vessel after arriving on-scene, and transported him to shore where he was treated by York County emergency medical services.

“Today’s case is an example of what can happen in severe weather, but my crew and I were happy to get the mariner to safety,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Andrew Manzoline, the coxswain of the response boat that conducted the rescue. “It’s important for people to check the weather before going out and to have the proper safety equipment like life jackets and marine radios and to properly dress for cold water temperatures.

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