“This was a challenging rescue and time was of the essence, since it was dark and the waves were breaking so close to shore,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Timothy DaSilva, Station San Juan boatswains mate and coxswain for the case. “I am very grateful for having an experienced crew and commend them and the responding Puerto Rico Emergency Management crews for their decisive actions which helped save three lives.”
Coast Guard watchstanders in San Juan, Puerto Rico received notification from a 911 emergency operator at 6:10 p.m. Tuesday, who reported three people were clinging on to a capsized personal watercraft near “Isla de Cabras”.
Watchstanders directed the launch of a Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and 33-foot Special Purpose Craft from Station San Juan to search for and rescue any persons in the water. Puerto Rico Emergency Management watercraft units also responded to the scene.
Shortly thereafter, the Station San Juan crew arrived on scene and located the capsized watercraft and the three riders inside the wave break. The Station San Juan crew threw rescue lines that reached a female rider, who they safely recovered from the water. Two Puerto Rico Emergency Management watercraft units that also arrived on scene were able and safely recovered the two other two riders, a man and a woman.
“I feel very happy and thankful to the responding units, they arrived quickly and did a great job in rescuing and bringing me and my friends to safety,” said Daniela Viveros, watercraft rider rescued by the Coast Guard boat crew.
The rescued riders, reported to be adults, were all wearing life jackets.