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67-year old sailor's life saved after box ship rescue off Aleutian Islands

THE US-flagged 7,500-TEU President Eisenhower, enroute to Yokohama from Oakland, rescued a 67-year-old man from a disabled sailboat 500 nautical miles southwest of Dutch Harbor in Alaska's Aleutian Island chain, reported Fort Lauderdale's Maritime Executive

08 June 2020 - 19:06

THE US-flagged 7,500-TEU President Eisenhower, enroute to Yokohama from Oakland, rescued a 67-year-old man from a disabled sailboat 500 nautical miles southwest of Dutch Harbor in Alaska's Aleutian Island chain, reported Fort Lauderdale's Maritime Executive.

The President Eisenhower's intervention may have saved the sailor's life, said he US Coast Guard. All of the boat's sails were ripped, the engine was inoperable and the electronics all failed except for the EPIRB (emergency position-indicating radio beacon).



'The sailing vessel Miss Lilly was so far away from our assets it would have taken much longer for us to arrive on scene to assist,' said Adam DeRocher, the District 17 Senior Search and Rescue Controller.



At about 0900 hours, Coast Guard District 17 received an EPIRB distress alert from the sailing vessel Miss Lilly. The man aboard reported that the vessel was disabled and adrift, and he was in need of Coast Guard assistance.



Due to the long distance to the position, the District 17 command centre requested help from nearby commercial vessels using the AMVER (Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System) system, along with an urgent GMDSS (Global Maritime Distress and Safety System) broadcast.



The centre also diverted the Coast Guard cutter Mellon and launched an Air Station Kodiak C-130J Hercules aircraft to assist with the search and provide a communications platform.



The crew of the President Eisenhower responded to the alert and diverted 30 nautical miles to assist the Miss Lilly. The President Eisenhower arrived on-scene and established verbal communications with the man who wanted to abandon his vessel and come on board, reporting that the sailboat was no longer safe or seaworthy.



Luckily, the weather was exceptionally calm, with 10-mile visibility, calm winds, two-foot seas and an air temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit. The crew of the President Eisenhower launched one of their small boats, retrieved the distressed sailor and brought him aboard.


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