The Elizabeth City Coast Guard has rescued five people from a distressed boat early Sunday morning in rough seas at Bogue Inlet shoals off the coast of Emerald Isle, North Carolina (N.C.). The stranded crew members with “The Shisty Living” pleasure craft contacted Sector North Carolina Watchstanders by VHF radio reporting they were disabled and needed help.
Initially, the Coast Guard Station Emerald Isle and Tow Boat U.S. both launched small boats to the location of the disabled vessel. However, due to shallow water and surf conditions, neither rescue vessel was able to get close enough, according to a Coast Guard press release.
In order to reach the stranded boaters a call was made to Air Station Elizabeth City so that they could bring in the MH-60J Jayhawk helicopter crew which hoisted all five people aboard at 2:07 a.m. and transported them to Station Emerald Isle. The rescue could not have taken place so quickly if it weren’t for their VHF radio they had onboard their boat.
The U.S. Coast Guard’s 2007 Recreational Boating Statistics show:
- 685 fatalities — 3,673 injuries — 5,191 accidents — $53 million in property damage.
- 90 percent of drowning victims were not wearing life jackets.
- Alcohol was the leading contributing factor in approximately one-fifth of all boating fatalities.
- Only 14 percent of all boating fatalities occurred on boats where the operator had received boating safety instruction.
- The most reported type of accident was a collision with another vessel. However, capsizing and falls overboard are the most reported types of fatal accidents and accounted for the majority (60 percent) of all boating fatalities.
- Overall, operator inattention, carelessness/reckless operation, excessive speed and passenger/skier behavior are the leading contributing factors of all reported accidents.
Recreation boating accidents are tragic because the great majority of accidents are preventable.
Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm is based in Virginia (VA), with an office also in Elizabeth City, in Northeast North Carolina (NC), practicing primarily in the southeastern U.S. and handles only injury law, including car, truck, railroad, and medical negligence cases and more. Our Carolina injur law website is: http://carolina.hsinjurylaw.