Coast Guard, sheriffs locate disabled vessel

America's Heartland Coast Guard NewsMEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Coast Guard located a disabled vessel with two persons aboard near Shelby Forest State Park on the Mississippi River, Wednesday.

Rescued were Helen Stearnes and Allyson Ellis.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Lower Mississippi River received a report at 6:25 p.m. from a friend of the stranded boaters reporting that their 21-foot deck boat became disabled. The boaters contacted their friend by cell phone after they reportedly lost engine power and became caught in an eddy on the Tennessee side of the Mississippi River. The watchstanders at Sector Lower Mississippi River command center and the Crittenden County, Ark., Sheriff’s Department located the vessel using cell phone triangulation.

A Sector Lower Mississippi River 25-foot Response Boat-Small and crew arrived on scene and towed the vessel to Mud Island Marina.

“This case is a reminder that boating safety can never be understated,” said Lt. Cmdr. David Block, chief of response for Sector Lower Mississippi River. “We recommend all mariners have marine-band radios on board and file a float plan with a friend or family. If mariners in distress call on channel 16 and file a float plan, we can locate them much faster.”

Stearnes and Ellis reported no injuries and required no medical attention.

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