Coast Guard rescues three, 96 miles off Florida

The Coast Guard rescued three people, Sunday, after their 25-foot sailboat became disabled 96 miles offshore of Anclote Island, Florida.

Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg command center received a channel 16 distress alert via VHF-FM radio from the vessel’s owner who reported the need for assistance. The vessel had become disabled and with worsening weather conditions, a passenger was requesting rescue for herself and her 12-year-old and 3-year-old children. 

A Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter aircrew hoisted the woman and two children without medical concerns and returned them to the air station where family greeted them. 

“This successful rescue was made possible by the quick response and effective communication between our rescue crews and the vessel’s master. It is essential for all mariners to have and use a VHF-FM radio in case of an emergency,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Claudia Kearn, Sector St. Petersburg command center watchstander. “This allows rescue crews to establish a clear and direct line of communication, which can be critical in a crisis situation. Please take the time to familiarize yourself with your vessel’s safety equipment and procedures, and always be vigilant about your own safety and the safety of those around you.  

The vessel owner remained in the vessel awaiting better weather conditions to sail back to shore. 

By Tim Queeney