Coast Guard Station Maui RB-M crew rescues boater off Kahoolawe

A Coast Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew with a rescued boater arrive safely at Coast Guard Station Maui, USCG rescues boater Kahoolawe
A Coast Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew with a rescued boater arrive safely at Coast Guard Station Maui, Oct. 27, 2019. The boater abandoned ship after his vessel began taking on water off Kahoolawe and was rescued by the RB-M crew.
U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Shaun Farroll.

HONOLULU — The USCG rescued a 75-year-old boater who abandoned ship after his sailing vessel began taking on water 500 yards off Kahoolawe, Sunday.

“We are always happy at the end of the day when we know someone who was in danger is now safe and sound,” said Lt. j.g. Brad McNell, a Sector Honolulu command duty officer. “This case is a great example of why we recommend waterway users have multiple forms of communication. The boater had abandoned his vessel into his dinghy and fortunately had a second radio aboard allowing him to contact our assets once they arrived on scene and recover him quickly.”

Coast Guard Station Maui’s 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew, USCG rescues boater Kahoolawe
Archive image: a Coast Guard Station Maui’s 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew conduct search patterns by water during a search and rescue exercise (SAREX) near Kapalua, Maui, the past Oct. 24, 2019. The training brought a wide range of services together including the Coast Guard, Maui County Fire Department, Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Services, American Medical Response, and Maui County Police Department.
U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Jim Connor.

A Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew brought the boater back to Coast Guard Station Maui. There are no reports of injuries.

At 8:02 a.m., Sector Honolulu watchstanders received a report from the boater’s friend stating he had called her and said his boat was sinking. He told his friend he was abandoning ship.

Sector Honolulu watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast notice to mariners and deployed the RB-M crew and crews from Air Station Barbers Point aboard a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and HC-130 Hercules airplane to search the area.

The crew aboard U.S. Coast Guard USCGC Bertholf (WMSL 750) refuels in hot an MH-65 Dolphin from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, Hawaii.  USCG rescues boater Kahoolawe
Archive image: The crew aboard U.S. Coast Guard USCGC Bertholf (WMSL 750) refuels in hot an MH-65 Dolphin from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, Hawaii.
U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class David Weydert.

At 11:01 a.m., the crews located the boater’s vessel on shore and began searching the surrounding waters. The Hercules and RB-M crews heard the boater’s calls over the radio, made contact, and we’re able to locate his dinghy at 11:31 a.m. The RB-M then successfully recovered him.

“One of the most important aspects of search and rescue operations is the notification process,” said McNell. “We always recommend waterway users err on the side of caution and tell someone when they think they are in danger. Something as simple as a phone call to a friend can make a world of difference and as always we are standing by on VHF channel 16 should you need help.”

HC-130 Hercules aircraft from Air Station Barbers Point,
Archive image: a Coast Guard Cutter Midgett (WMSL 757), right, meets Coast Guard Cutter Kimball (WMSL 756) off Diamond Head while a HC-130 Hercules aircraft from Air Station Barbers Point flies between them.
U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer John Masson.

The boater had been traveling from Lanai to the Big Island when he began taking on water. His vessel washed ashore on Kahoolawe and pollution responders are investigating.

The weather on scene at the time of the rescue was 8 mph winds and seas up to one foot.

-USCG-

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