A Coast Guard aircrew rescued a man after his vessel ran aground near Cape Fairweather, 10 miles northwest of Lituya Bay on Thursday.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Juneau received a call at 6:50 a.m. from the captain of the West Bank that his vessel was aground and listing on a rocky beach, according to the Coast Guard.
An MH-60 Jayhawk sortied from Coast Guard Air Station Sitka, landing at the vessel at 10:19 a.m. and transporting the man to Sitka, according to the news release. No injuries were reported.
Watchstanders were able to keep in communication with the man through the vessel Northstar, which stayed on-scene to assist until the helicopter arrived, according tothe Coast Guard.
“We are grateful to the good Samaritan vessel that stayed on scene to assist with communications with the West Bank,” said Ensign Maximilian Carfagno, command duty officer for Sector Juneau, in the news release.
The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of the grounding, according to the news release.
“It’s been busy, I tell you what. Here in Alaska, commercial traffic has increased. Cruise ship traffic has come back and actually exceeded prepandemic levels. Recreational vessel traffic has increased,” said Rear Adm. Nathan Moore, commander of District 17, of the summer so far. “We’ve been very busy on the water and across our mission set.”
Medevac at sea
An aircrew from CGAS Kodiak evacuated an injured crewman from a container ship south of Dutch Harbor on Tuesday.
D17 watchstanders received a report on Sunday from the Chinese-flagged cargo ship Xin Li Hia that a crewmember was suffering from severe abdominal pain, according to the news release. The ship was approximately 800 nautical miles southwest of Dutch Harbor at the time; many cargo ships sail near the Aluetians as the great circle route takes them through the North Pacific.
Watchstandars diverted the cutter Kimball to the scene while forward-deploying the MH-60 and a C-130 Hercules to Dutch Harbor, according to the news release. The aircrew was able to hoist the man on Tuesday afternoon, flying him to Dutch Harbor, where he took a civilian medevac flight to Anchorage.
“This case showcases the importance proficiency plays in conducting long-range medevacs in Alaska,” said Lt. Christopher McCarthy, D17 command duty officer, in the news release. “The close coordination between our command center staff, the multiple Air Station Kodiak crews and the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Kimball helped ensured this mariner was able to obtain medical treatment.”
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