Coast Guard, Sitka Fire Department assists vessel taking on water near Sitka, Alaska

Coast Guard Alaska News
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard assisted a mariner aboard the 43-foot fishing vessel Stardust, which was taking on water southeast of Japonski Island in Sitka, Wednesday evening.

A Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team 38-foot Training Boat Special Purpose Craft crew and a Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew along with a team from the Sitka Fire Department transferred dewatering pumps to the Stardust and escorted the vessel to Sitka Harbor.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau watchstanders received a call from the operator of the Stardust who reported his vessel was taking on water. The watchstanders diverted the SPC-TB and Jayhawk helicopter crews who were in the area conducting hoist training. Alaska State Troopers were notified and a crew from the Sitka Fire Department advised they were getting underway to assist.

Once on scene, the fire department crew transferred the dewatering pump from the SPC-TB and delivered it to the distressed vessel. A second dewatering pump was transferred from the Jayhawk helicopter to the SPC-TB crew and delivered to the Stardust. The operator was able to control the flooding with one of the pumps and had a friend tow him back to Sitka as the SPC-TB crew provided an escort.

“Our assets are always ready to respond to any situation, even when the crews are conducting training evolutions,” said Lt. Jason Condon, Jayhawk pilot, Air Station Sitka. “This case was a good demonstration of the collective effort between the Coast Guard and Sitka Fire and Rescue to effectively combine our skills and assets in order to render assistance to this mariner.”

Weather on scene was reported as 15 to 20-mph winds, cloudy and a temperature of 41 degrees.

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