Kick off to summer boating season is a busy one for Coast Guard

NEW YORK- For many boaters, Memorial Day weekend acts as an official start to the boating season. This weekend has also doubled as a very busy search and rescue weekend for the Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary and maritime partner agencies in the New York and New Jersey Waterway areas.

Some of the cases Coast Guard Sector New York responded to today are:

The Coast Guard medevaced a woman who sustained an injury from a fishing hook at around 11 a.m. today. The woman was aboard the 100-foot New Jersey based charter vessel Golden Eagle. A Coast Guard Station Sandy Hook rescue crew responded within a matter of minutes to bring the woman to shore where she received emergency medical attention.

The Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary vessel Lady B, New York Fire Department and a Good Samaritan rescued seven boaters from a boat taking on water near Keyport Harbor, N.J. at around 12 p.m. The boaters contacted the Coast Guard via VHF radio channel 16 reporting their vessel was taking on water. While a 25-foot Coast Guard rescue boat crew was en route, the Good Samaritan vessel Not Normal took six of the seven passengers aboard. The owner of the distressed vessel stayed aboard while the Coast Guard rescue crew placed it in a side tow and later safely transferred the tow to a commercial tow boat.

The Coast Guard Auxiliary vessel Lady B came upon a disabled 19-foot recreational vessel near the Outer Bridge area of the Arthur Kill at around 4:30 p.m. The volunteer auxiliary crew took the vessel in tow and brought the vessel safely to the Sewaren Boat Launch, Sewaren, N.J.

“Some safety tips for boaters are to always wear a life jacket while out on the water and to never operate vessels under the influence of drugs or alcohol,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Casey Judd, a search and rescue controller at Coast Guard Sector New York. “Boaters should have a working radio that operates on VHF channel 16 and a fully charged cell phone. They should also file a float plan before they leave, letting someone who is not getting underway with them know where they will be and when they should return and provide an emergency contact number in the event they are not back when expected.”

“A type of Global Positioning System GPS onboard a vessel is also extremely helpful to aid rescuers in the event of an emergency,” Casey added.

Boaters should keep safety their top priority. Safety gear such as life jackets, radios, emergency position indicating radio beacon EPIRB, flares, and vessel integrity should all be checked prior to getting underway.

To learn more about what you can do to keep safe on the water, visit:

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