Coast Guard responding to report of 40 people abandoning ship south of Hawaii

130 Barbers PointHONOLULU – The Coast Guard is responding to a report of 40 people abandoning ship after their fishing vessel American Eagle caught fire approximately 1,800 miles south of the Hawaiian Islands, Wednesday.

The Coast Guard issued an urgent marine information broadcast and launched an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point. They are expected to arrive on scene approximately 5 p.m. (HST) today.

Fong Seong 888, a Tuvalu-flagged oil tanker, is en route transiting more than 90 miles to the vessel’s location and is expected to arrive on scene approximately 8 p.m. (HST)

The 40 crewmembers aboard 258-foot U.S.-flagged fishing vessel abandoned ship at 10 a.m. (HST) into two life rafts, three work boats and one skiff. An emergency position-indicating radio beacon was activated and is transmitting information.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Honolulu received notification from the vessel’s company American Eagle Fishing LLC at 8:38 a.m. (HST) of a fire aboard the vessel.

No injuries have been reported.

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