ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.— A Coast Guard Station St. Petersburg boat crew rescue an aircraft crashed pilot in the water 3 nautical miles south of MacDill Air Force Base, Tampa Bay, Friday.
The 29-foot Response Boat-Small (RB-S) boat crew transferred the aircraft pilot to Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel without medical concerns.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg were notified at 6:30 p.m. by Pinellas Fire and Rescue and diverted the Response Boat crew from training. The Coast Guard boatcrew recovered the crashed pilot from the water in Tampa Bay.
The Cherokee 180 plane is submerged and the owner will be working with commercial salvage for recovery. A hazard to navigation notice to mariners is being broadcasted on VHF radio channel 16.
«There was a lot of communication and inter-agency cooperation,» said Petty Officer 2nd Class Steven Hava, the boat crew coxswain. «The pilot was able to use the light on his cell phone to signal to us where he was, which made finding him quicker. A lot of others arrived on-scene about the same time as us.»
The cause of the crash is under investigation. A MH-60T Jayhawk Medium-Range Recovery Helicopter (MRR) aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater also responded.
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