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Coast Guard MH-60T rescue a sailor near Smith Point, Virginia

Coast Guard MH-60T Jayhawk aircrew rescue a sailor near Smith Point, Virginia
The Coast Guard crews rescue a sailor near Smith Point, Virginia.
Archive image: An MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City lowers their rescue basket to crew members from Coast Guard Station Portsmouth during a search and rescue demonstration for the 18th Annual Steven Todd Dooley search and rescue forum in Hampton, Virginia, Feb. 29, 2024.
The SAR Forum is an annual event that continues to strengthen regional interagency partnerships, as well as improve the life-saving processes and skills of search and rescue agencies dedicated to preserving life, property, and public safety in the region.
U.S. Coast Guard Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Ryan L. Noel.

BALTIMORE — The Coast Guard crews rescue a sailor from an aground sailing vessel near Smith Point, Virginia. Thursday, May 9, 2024, at evening.

Coast Guard Sector Maryland-National Capital Region watchstanders overheard communications via VHF-FM radio channel 16 with Coast Guard Sector Virginia from the operator of the 30-foot sailing vessel Orion, stating his vessel ran aground near Smith Point in Maryland state waters. 

The watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast (UMIB), directed the launch of a Coast Guard Station St. Inigoes 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew, a Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City MH-60T Jayhawk Medium-Range Recovery Helicopter aircrew, along with local rescue crews.

The RB-M boatcrew arrived on scene near Smith Point and found a sailing vessel lodged aground in shallow water, due to the depth of water the station crew was unable to assist. 

The MH-60 Jayhawk MRR Helicopter aircrew arrived on scene and safely hoisted the mariner from the sailing vessel and transferred him to Rappahannock General Hospital, with no reported injuries.

“The quick response of our crews allowed for a smooth and effective response in this case,” said Lt. Cmdr. Erin Palmer, the search and rescue mission controller for Sector Maryland-National Capital Region. “Thankfully, the mariner had a VHF radio on board and did the right thing by hailing out for help. Channel 16 is continuously monitored by the Coast Guard, and it is imperative to have a VHF radio on board your vessel in case of an emergency.”


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