REPORT FROM THE US COAST GUARD – APRA HARBOR, Guam — A man and a young boy are safe after their 14-foot skiff was swept out to sea near an atoll in the South Pacific Sunday.
At 9:41 a.m. Monday, watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Guam Command Center received a report from Pan-Pacific Education and Communication Experiments by Satellite of a skiff that had been swept out to sea due to high tide and poor weather near Namoluk Atoll, Chuuk. They reportedly had paddles, no motor and minimal food aboard the vessel.
Sector Guam made notifications to Federated States of Micronesia Maritime Surveillance Advisor, FSM National Search and Rescue Coordinator, Chuuk Search and Rescue Liaison, U.S. Embassy in Pohnpei and the 14th Coast Guard District Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Honolulu.
Sector Guam identified and diverted two Automated-Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue System vessels in the area.
A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Air Station Barbers Point on Oahu and a Navy P-8A Poseidon fixed-wing aircraft from Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, Japan, were also launched to assist in the search.
The Ocean Pegasus, a 656-foot freight ship, and the 575-foot freight ship Verdant Island responded to the call for help and diverted at the request of the Coast Guard to assist in the search.
Tuesday morning the Ocean Pegasus located and safely rescued the 44-year-old man and nine-year-old boy. They remain aboard the Ocean Pagasus.
AMVER, sponsored by the United States Coast Guard, is a unique, computer-based, and voluntary global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea.
The 14th Coast Guard District encompasses an area of 12.2 million square miles of the Central and South Pacific. Coast Guard aircraft based in Hawaii frequently travel thousands of miles in response to search and rescue and other calls for assistance.The Hercules is scheduled to be replaced by the HC-130J, which will bring increased capabilities to Coast Guard response across the Pacific.
For more information, contact Lt. William White, Coast Guard Sector Guam public affairs officer at (671) 355-4821.