Coast Guard Station New Haven rescues distressed kayaker on Long Island Sound

1st Coast Guard District News
NEW YORK – The Coast Guard rescued a distressed kayaker approximately five miles north of Roanoke, New York, today.

“At approximately 10:27 a.m., watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound received a call via channel 16 from a female voice saying, ‘Mayday, Mayday, Mayday, Kayaker in the water,”’ said Chief Petty Officer Frank St. Pierre, the command duty officer at Sector Long Island Sound.

With only a bearing of 050 off the Bethany RFF tower, the watchstanders began to make call outs to obtain additional information and attempt to minimize the search area.

The Sector watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast (UMIB) and then received another call over channel 16 from a woman who stated that she was the distressed kayaker and that she could not get back on her red kayak.

The kayaker, who was wearing a life jacket and wetsuit, had energized her personal Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB), which gave off a signal of her approximate position.

Coast Guard District One out of Boston, Massachusetts, notified Sector Long Island Sound of receiving a EPIRB distress signal with a position correlating to the distressed kayaker.

“When we first received the distress call on channel 16, our search area extended from Bethany, Connecticut out to 4NM south of Shinnecock, NY,” said St. Pierre. “Due to the kayaker being well prepared to go out on the water, we were able to minimize the search area drastically.”

A rescue boatcrew from Station New Haven was launched to the kayakers estimated position, along with a Suffolk County helicopter.

The Suffolk County helicopter crew was first on scene and was able to make contact with the kayaker via her handheld radio. Shortly after, the rescue boatcrew arrived on scene and assisted the kayaker out of the water.

Once recovered from the water, Station New Haven crewmembers assessed her condition and determined that she was in good health and not in need of medical assistance.

“Her preparedness was a major factor in us rescuing her today,” said St. Pierre. “We hope that others who are looking to go out on the water take into consideration that they should be prepared for the worst, because being prepared could help save your life.”

The Kayaker and her kayak are being brought back to Station New Haven, Connecticut.

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