Coast Guard Tows Sailboat After Rescueing 4 off N.C. coast

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – The Coast Guard along with assistance from TowBoatUS moored the Wind Song II, a 52-foot sailboat at the Morehead City Yacht Basin in Morehead City, N.C., at approximately 6 p.m., Thursday.

The Coast Guard Cutter Cochito, an 87-foot Coastal Patrol Boat homeported in Norfolk, Va., took the Wind Song II in tow at approximately 8 a.m., 113 miles southeast of Cape Lookout, N.C.

TowBoatUS, met the Cochito near the mouth of the Beaufort Inlet Channel at approximately 4:30 p.m., where it took the sailboat in tow and moored it at the Morehead City Yacht Basin.

There were no reports of injuries.

“What ended up being a big help from the Wind Song II, was that they had a satelite phone on board and were able to relay their location to the Coast Guard so that the we could locate them,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Sam Pollard, the executive petty officer of the Cochito. “The two members that stayed aboard knew what they were doing semanship wise. We made an initial approach with the line throwing gun that was unsuccessful, but we were able to make a successful approach with our heaving line. It was a long tow and a pretty phenominal effort on everyone’s part here, especially considering the sea conditions.”

At 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, TowBoatUS, notified Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center Norfolk watchstanders in Portsmouth, reporting that the Wind Song II was in distress with four people aboard.

An HC-130J Hercules aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., was deployed and arrived on scene at 10:30 a.m. The aircrew was able to establish communications with the crew of the disabled vessel, who reported that their boat had suffered a mast and rudder casualty.

A MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter rescue crew from Air Station Elizabeth City was dispatched to the scene and arrived at 6:51 p.m. The helicopter rescue crew hoisted two people from the vessel and transported them back to Elizabeth City where they were met by the owner of the sailboat. The two remaining people on the disabled sailboat denied Coast Guard assistance.

U.S. Coast Guard video by Seaman Chandler Murry.

If you have any problems viewing this article, please report it here.