Coast Guard responds to capsized vessel on Copper River Delta near Cordova, Alaska

Coast Guard Alaska NewsVALDEZ, Alaska – The Coast Guard responded to a 24-foot fishing vessel capsized on the Copper River Delta, near Cordova, Thursday.

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage received a report at approximately noon that the bow picker Bad Boy capsized with one person on board while engaged in fishing activities. The individual was safely rescued by a nearby good Samaritan, aboard the fishing vessel Crown Royal. No injuries were reported.

Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Valdez is coordinating with federal and state agencies to oversee salvage of the vessel and ensure the safety and protection of the marine environment.

As fishing activity surges due to the opening of commercial salmon fishing last week, this capsizing serves as a reminder to the industry and public at large that the Alaskan maritime environment can be dangerous and unforgiving. The Coast Guard urges mariners to check their vessels’ safety equipment and remain vigilant during this fishing season.

“It is tremendously important to make the necessary safety preparations prior to each trip such as filing a float plan, reviewing the boating rules of the road, evaluating the forecasted weather to determine your vessel’s capability to operate in adverse conditions and taking time to plan for things that could take a bad turn on the water,” said Lt. Cmdr. Walner Alvarez, prevention department head at MSU Valdez. “Commercial fishing vessel operators often tend to work long hours during the extended daylight experienced in the Alaskan summer and can neglect to get a good night’s sleep. Many studies have directly linked fatigue to increased human error and poor performance.”

The Coast Guard is also sending a team of commercial fishing vessel safety examiners to Cordova to conduct safety examinations of fishing vessels June 30th through July 3rd. These exams are conducted free of charge and mariners are highly encouraged to obtain one. Exams can be scheduled with the Coast Guard MSU Valdez examiners at 907-255-8724.

The fishing vessel Bad Boy is home ported in Cordova, Alaska. The cause of the incident is currently under investigation.

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