Mariner rescued near Christmas Island

Hawaii-Pacific Coast Guard News
HONOLULU — A mariner in distress was rescued by a container vessel in the North Pacific at 9 p.m. Monday.

The crew aboard the container vessel Kota Wangi rescued a 58-year-old Australian mariner aboard the sailing vessel Folly II. The mariner was in good condition and was transiting from California to Christmas Island, in the Republic of Kiribati, when the vessel’s autopilot reportedly failed.

After manually navigating the vessel for four weeks, he had become too fatigued to continue.

Watchstanders in Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center Honolulu received notification of the distress from a Personal Locator Beacon at approximately 6:11 a.m. Monday.

An HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point was launched and established communications with the mariner. A second Hercules was launched at 5 p.m. Monday to provide cover during the rescue.

The Kota Wangi is registered with the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System, a network of ships whose crews volunteer to assist with rescue on the seas, helping to extend the Coast Guard’s reach in cases outside the immediate reach of response assets.

AMVER evolved into a global technology over the past century. It relies on the cooperation of commercial mariners to assist others in need. When a vessel is found to be in distress, registered AMVER vessels in the area are contacted to provide assistance. With its roots reaching back to the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, AMVER now incorporates cutting edge satellite and communication technologies as a critical lifesaving tool in the modern maritime community.

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