Rescued Boaters Flown to STX

The aircrew of an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen and a Royal Netherlands Navy helicopter rescue swimmer take a photo with the four survivors of a capsized vessel, after they were rescued earlier 45 miles south of Vieques, Puerto Rico July 14, 2019. The rescued boaters were transported to St. Croix, where they were received by Customs and Border Protection authorities. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)
The aircrew of an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen and a Royal Netherlands Navy helicopter rescue swimmer take a photo with the four survivors of a capsized vessel, after they were rescued earlier 45 miles south of Vieques, Puerto Rico July 14, 2019. The rescued boaters were transported to St. Croix, where they were received by Customs and Border Protection authorities. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

Helicopters from U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen and the Royal Netherlands Navy rescued four men from a capsized vessel Sunday, about 45 nautical miles south of Vieques, Puerto Rico.

The rescue reinforced the importance of being prepared on the water, according to Lt. Carl Luxhoj, aircraft commander of the Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin aircraft that took part in the rescue.

“The survivors had life vests on and flares to signal the helicopter,” he said. “We thank our international partners from the Royal Netherlands Navy who heard the distress call and responded. Their assistance helped expedite the rescue and reduced the time the survivors were in the water clinging on to their vessel.”

Coast Guard watchstanders in Sector San Juan received a call at 7:50 a.m. Sunday from Vieques Emergency Management personnel, who relayed a report of the distress from a friend of one of the rescued men.

Advertising (skip)
Advertising (skip)
Advertising (skip)
Advertising (skip)
Advertising (skip)

The Coast Guard launched an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and broadcasted an Urgent Marine Information broadcast notifying marine traffic in the area to be on the lookout for the boaters. A Royal Netherlands Navy helicopter, flying in the vicinity, responded to render rescue assistance.

The Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew located the capsized vessel, with two men clinging on to the boat and two others sitting on top of the vessel.

The Coast Guard aircrew deployed their rescue swimmer, who used the aircraft rescue basket to hoist three of the boaters aboard, while the Royal Netherlands Navy helicopter rescued the remaining boater and recovered the Coast Guard rescue swimmer.

The rescued boaters were transported to St. Croix, where they were received by Customs and Border Protection authorities.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Support the VI Source

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall - we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. Our sites are more popular than ever, but advertising revenues are falling - so you can see why we could use your help. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. If everybody who appreciates our reporting efforts were to help fund it for as little as $1, our future would be much more secure. Thanks in advance for your support!