Two Maine Fishermen Rescued After Boat Sinks

BOSTON – A Coast Guard Station Southwest Harbor boat crew rescued two fishermen from a life raft after their vessel sank in Frenchman’s Bay, Maine, near Egg Rock around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday. The vessel’s master was detained after failing drug and alcohol tests.

Rescued were Malcolm Dow, vessel operator, and Tom Trip, crewmember of the fishing vessel Luke & Jodi, home ported in Jonesport, Maine.

An emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) transmitted a distress signal from the Luke & Jodi to the Coast Guard around 10:19 p.m. Tuesday. The Coast Guard contacted the vessel’s owner, who indicated the vessel was moored. After the EPIRB continued to signal, the Coast Guard determined the vessel was actually underway. Around 11 p.m., Coast Guard Sector Northern New England issued an urgent marine information broadcast alerting boaters of a possible vessel in distress as Coast Guard Station Southwest Harbor launched a 47-foot motor life boat and Air Station Cape Cod launched an HU-25 Falcon Jet.

The boat crew arrived on-scene about 11:30 p.m. as the vessel sank and found two strobe lights from the floating EPIRBs. The boat crew then rescued Dow and Trip, both in their survivals suits, from a life raft. The survivors and equipment were transported to Station Southwest Harbor. Both men, from Trenton, Maine, were evaluated by emergency medical personnel and did not require further medical care.

Alcohol and drug tests were administered by Maine Marine Patrol officers at the Bar Harbor Police Department. Dow, the boat operator, failed both tests and had a blood alcohol level above the legal limit of .04 for commercial vessel operators. Dow was arrested by the Maine Marine Patrol.

This rescue highlights the critical importance of fishing vessel safety gear. The crew’s proper use of this equipment significantly contributed to their surviving this sinking.

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